When I was a kid (middle school- high school) my mother had a couple of whiskey barrel planters at the front of our little house. I wasn't much for doing any of the actual gardening (I felt more like that was her thing). For the most part it was just an extension of my mother's house decor. I appreciated the flowers well enough, but it was wasn't my project, and I kind of saw it like "The same old thing," every spring: purple petunias and varied pansies.
It wasn't even so much that the flowers she picked were the same each year, but that everyone picked the pansies and petunias every year. They were all over the neighborhood, in all the store front planters, at the city park, by the freeway exit, and into the next town! Same old purple petunias and yellow, burgundy, and purple pansies.
The spring of my senior year of high school, my mother brought home a flat of seedlings labeled "Pansies-varied." The buds hadn't opened at all, so I expected the standard yellow and purple. Imagine my surprise when I came home a couple days later to find the whiskey barrels gushing with the most beautiful, pearly, black blossoms! Every single pansy was black, with just a hint of iridescent blue-violet toward the yellow center. I'd never seen anything like it (and frankly neither had anyone else on my block)! It was still classic in its familiarity, but suddenly elegant, even a bit playful or mischievous looking! A flower had taken my way of thinking and turned it upside down for a whole different perspective. And I was in love with it.
P.S. I can't wait to have a container garden of my own this spring.