Our California daughter emailed at 1:47 a.m. this morning while my husband and I slept. “Just wanted to let you know we arrived safely in Uganda late last night. It’s the middle of the night there, so I will wait to call. I enjoyed some of the finest passion fruit juice on the planet with breakfast this morning.”

Kelly knows I’m fond of Uganda’s passion fruit juice from the month of December 2010 I spent with her new family of three along the Nile. Twelve years later, in celebration of his high school graduation, Jinja Town, Uganda, is their first destination while visiting their adopted son’s family.

I opened another transcontinental email received at 4:30 a.m. “I am in Australia right now visiting family and making new friends as you can see by the photo I’ve attached.” My friend Marilyn B posed with a kangaroo.

Our group of fellow art lovers named her Marilyn B for “Battiste” so we won’t confuse her with Marilyn Smith. We also know Marilyn B as Smiley because she always is.

Pondering Kelly’s and Marilyn’s wanderlust, I rolled back my writing chair, gazed out my study window and thought, “So, what’s my breaking news?”

On cue, the first foxglove to bloom in my gardens waved three feet from my nose. Every day this spring I’ve watched the tall, slim stem grow, the buds develop and pink petals open their black speckled upside-down blossoms.

Eleven months after my friend Connie placed four Styrofoam cups containing a foxglove seedlings into my care, I witnessed a hummingbird flit from flower to flower.

Alas, winter claimed two of Connie’s gifts, and the other survivor languishes under the crabapple tree on the south end of the perennial island. The seedling grew tall and lush last summer and fall, so I’m perplexed. I’ll keep weeding and feeding her and see what happens.

These challenges make my one blooming Digitalis purpurea more precious, even though I sighted more robust clusters of her kind on the fabulous 22nd Annual Rochester Garden Walk two days ago.

I confess, my one foxglove paled compared to the thick stems and layers of blossoms full of themselves and growing in a mat of thick mulch. Yet, every gardener deserves their success and praise for their labor. Akin to raising daughters, it’s vain to compare one’s foxglove to another’s.

As this is my first and only foxglove, I will leave her be. I’ve plenty perennials to cut for my tables and hostess gifts.

For larkspur is blooming! Imagine her blue with the native yellow lanceleaf coreopsis from our west wildflower field where lavender once grew.

When Marilyn B and our companions arrive in July for another garden potluck, I hope there’s enough daylilies and Asian lilies left for bouquets. And the hibiscus should be beautiful when Kelly, our son-in-law, and grandson visit us in August.

Dear Reader, perhaps the shoot emerging from the blooming foxglove will flourish to welcome home our West Coast family.

Now, that’s breaking news.

Contact Iris at irisfarmletters@gmail.com.