Sunday, July 04, 2021

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jul 4, 2021): Where a Plant Might Grow

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jul 4, 2021): Where a Plant Might Grow
Q: Think of a place where a plant might grow, in two words. Spoonerize it — that is, switch the initial consonant or consonants of the two words. The result will name another place where a plant might grow, and a plant that might grow in either place.
I'm going back to bed and counting sheep.

PHLOX sounds like FLOCKS
A: FLOWER BOX --> BOWER, PHLOX

214 comments:

  1. Here's my standard reminder... don't post the answer or any hints that could lead directly to the answer (e.g. via a chain of thought, or an internet search) before the deadline of Thursday at 3pm ET. If you know the answer, click the link and submit it to NPR, but don't give it away here.

    You may provide indirect hints to the answer to show you know it, but make sure they don't give the answer away. You can openly discuss your hints and the answer after the Thursday deadline. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've come up with a possible answer which involves either of up to 4 possible meanings of a certain word which, like RUN or JACK, has many meanings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I feel a bit uncertain about my answer.

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    2. I think I've had the answer all along, but have been misinterpreting the question, causing a pretty good hint to spring from my subconscious.

      Delete
    3. I think my answer is the same as Enya_and_WeirdAl_fan's. I knew this word, but I don't think I had ever used it myself, and I had no idea it had so many meanings.
      I'm just about certain my answer is the same as Blaine's, because I actually understand his hint!

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  3. Eponymous answer. Plants grow best outside.

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  4. I'm happy to get Blaine's clue.
    It doesn't happen often.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Slow morning. Blaine and friends slept in.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe they came up with "lake water and wake later".

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  6. I have it and it's not related to Blaine's "shed" & "bed." Read the challenge carefully: read "and" as "plus."

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  7. Replies
    1. Thence passing forth, they shortly doe arryve
      Whereas the Bowre of Blisse was situate;
      A place pickt out by choyce of best alyve,
      That Natures worke by art can imitate:
      In which what ever in this worldly state
      Is sweete, and pleasing unto living sense,
      Or that may dayntest fantasy aggrate,
      Was poured forth with plentifull dispence,
      And made there to abound with lavish affluence.

      Delete
    2. Veronica, see my Thu 12:00 p.m. post, final ¶.

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    3. Ah, I see! I hope my clue wasn't TMI...perhaps I should just have said that I'm putting my best "guy on" the job?

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  8. You’ll start off with a two-word phrase
    In common usage nowadays,
    But what you get by Spoonerizing
    Is a little more surprising:

    First a not-so-common word,
    It houses an exotic bird;
    The plant goes by a curious name
    That brings to mind an ancient flame...

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  9. Cute one, Scott McClary! Not quite straightforward, but no need for unconventional thinking.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Apologies to Todd McClary for the misnomer. The spelling of PHLOX was not quite straightforward, but there was no need to "think outside the box" to come up with FLOWERBOX.

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  10. As Blaine's clue suggests, herd mentality is actually helpful in some circumstances.

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    Replies
    1. "Herd mentality" as in "flocks" of sheep, homonymous with "phlox," as in the puzzle answer, "FLOWER BOX --> BOWER, PHLOX."

      Delete
  11. No matter how hard I think, grow room and row groom, just don't work.

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  12. I first considered TRUCK FARM, but quickly moved on.

    ReplyDelete
  13. There is a connection to last week's puzzle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sacramento is the capital of California. The song "California, Here I Come" mentions "bowers of flowers".

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  14. When playing chess, it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on your pieces that are near your opponent’s attack workhorses.

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  15. Are we moving the consonants or the sounds? On air I think he said sounds.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. How was camping? For the time, I'm being a dud on this puzzle

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    3. Didn't John le Carré write The Consonant Gardener?

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    4. I once saw an American Indian in my office who said he kept dreaming of too teepees. He had no idea why it was bothering him...I told him that he was two tents. I can't believe posted this...but so did you! And I'm still no closer to the answer of this puzzle.

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    5. We're getting sidetracked. I'm assuming you haven't answered the puzzle as yet.

      Delete
  16. Replies
    1. Nice! Or switch leading consonants for a gardening tool and another canid.

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    2. Or an athlete and a journalist.

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    3. okay, the above-mentioned anagrams DO work with my answer, so maybe I do indeed have the correct one...

      Delete
  17. Would WS define Maple Leafs as a plant?

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  18. Perplexed here.

    I am guessing it has nothing to do with plantar fasciitis.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Do Canadians have a fourth of July?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes , they squeeze it in between the 3rd and the 5th

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    2. So they really are patriotic then?

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    3. Yes, they celebrate not being part of the US.

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    4. We really done want it do we? I say leave it to beaver.

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    5. When is Dependants Day this year?

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    6. That was Income Tax Day. It came and went already.
      pjb'sBirthdayFellOnTheSameDay,OfCourse

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    7. Hate to ruin a perfectly good humor thread but Canadians used to frequent s
      Sand Bar St. Park (on US 2 just S of the islands) on July 1, Dominion Day

      Delete
  20. Well, after a day of boating and swimming on the lake, back to the puzzle. I have a wild answer that I'm sure WS did not intend, but I like it so much I may send it in anyway (no clue here).

    sdb, Of course they do. I lived there for 6 years, and I can attest to the fact that their calendars do not jump from July 3 to July 5.

    Happy Fourth, everyone!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dr. K,
      Does that indicate they also celebrate Cinco de Mayo?

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    3. sdb,
      Yes, they do, though perhaps not to the same extent as here. You currently live closer to the border than we do, but my bettter half, Canadian by birth, is fond of saying Americans are benevolently ignorant about Canadians, and Canadians are malevolently well-informed about Americans.

      Delete
    4. I know all that. I used to do business up there and they always tried to embarrass me by asking me who their PM was. I always disappointed them. As I have posted here before I have run into several who were visiting down here and could not tell me who their PM was. I am not joking. Of course they know more about here than they may about their own country because we are the top dog and they are jealous. They were talking to the wrong person though, because I am not at all a fan of my country. I wish I did not have to live here now. Not that I want to live in Canada, but Europe is so very much better than living here.

      Delete
  21. If my answer is the intended one, it deals more in the initial consonant SOUND than the consonant(s) itself(themselves).
    pjbHopesHisParenthesesDon'tProvideTMI(OMG!)

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  22. There is one place where plants are guaranteed to grow: Criveway Drax.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Much like the tacos and ramen, I found this dish less than satisfying.

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  24. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    Replies
    1. bpb clue sms lik it might b implying blladonna but ven so no answr

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    2. I saw clue burning bush. Then fire. Oh well.

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    3. even more mysterious as I have no idea what the ans was

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    4. GRR, I give up, let's call the hole thing off

      Delete
  25. Some of us, including me, have failed to find an answer.
    Some who have don't seem very satisfied.
    First, WS gives an abbreviated (and inadequate) definition of Spoonerism.
    Then he gives an ambiguous direction about the words in the second half of his solution: A two word place and a two word plant or one for each?
    As he has admitted before, he never tries to solve the puzzler before foisting it on his public and has no assistant to do so. Many challenges have been flawed as a result.

    Of course this one might have an elegant, unambiguous solution and I'll have black feathers on my bib.

    Maybe his answer is a trick played on his intellectual audience: Brow gag.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The two word place spoonerizes to two words. The first of those two words is another place for a plant to grow. The second word is a plant.

      Delete
  26. Well, I am sending in an answer, which I'm sure is wrong, but at least it puts an end to my frustration.

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  27. It's interesting that many Blainesvillains are having trouble with this one. I found it to be approximately medium strength; Blaine apparently got the answer in just minutes.

    I'm wondering what explains the extra difficulty for some -- did they coast past the answer? Or maybe, for some people getting certain "near misses" points straight to the actual answer, and for others it doesn't?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are some near miss clues that are too close for comfort.

      Delete
  28. By the way, I think the proper definition of 'Spoonerism' makes it phonetic, not a matter of swapping *letters*. E.g., an actual Spoonerism, produced by Spooner himself: "The weight of rages will press hard upon the employer."

    ReplyDelete
  29. Meh. I believe I have the intended answer. I am underwhelmed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The two-word place where a plant might grow is very familiar. The other place where a plant might grow, and a plant that might grow in either place are much less so.

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    2. jan: If it is not TMI, is the "other place" one or two words?
      Likewise the plant?
      As I said above, I think WS is ambiguous.

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    3. ^^^ I wrote the above before I had the actual intended answer.

      Now that I do, I'd give this puzzle a solid B.

      Delete
  30. I looked again at Blaine's clue and changed one letter. I got something to Spoonerize, but is it the intended answer?????

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    Replies
    1. I rather doubt Blaine would post: "I'm going back to bed and mounting sheep."

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    2. If Blaine is indeed "Mounting Sheep," he's never put it in any of his family video year-end wrap-ups.

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    3. It might cause a shearing hearing.

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    4. Blaine is the Mayor here. He would get a cardin' pardon.

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    5. Might that not cause a sheep dip in the polls?

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  31. Replies
    1. Ben, The letter wasn't an M. Shame on you and your kinky thoughts. I hope you know I'm not being critical of your "M"

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    2. Hey! What about my kinky thoughts?

      Delete
  32. So, I have an answer, but I'm really not convinced. In my answer, the plant is one I am quite familiar with, as I have this plant on my property. However, the original two-word place a plant can grow is not terribly familiar to me. I have heard and used different wording when naming this place, so I'm just not sure my answer is the intended one.

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  33. I bet all those people who didn’t pick up the phone are beating themselves up.

    ReplyDelete
  34. To clarify Spoonerizing:

    The statement of the puzzle on the NPR puzzle site states: ”Spoonerize it - that is, switch the initial consonant or consonants of the two words.”

    However, in the actual transcript of the program what Will says on the air is: “Spoonerize it - that is, switch the initial consonant sounds of the two words.”

    Hope this helps.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No worries if you don't have enough spoons for this today. . .

      Delete
  35. The answer came to me this evening as I was chatting with the family. I had written down a bunch of places where plants can grow, and played around with ways they could possibly be spoonerized into a plant, and got nowhere with it.

    Then tonight, the plant name popped into my head, and I was able to back into the answer. I was not as familiar with the second place for a plant to grow, and looked it up to confirm.

    For an obscure hint, the plant is also the name of a cottage somewhere on Cape Cod.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jaws,
      I think I got the same answer you did and although it worked, didn't feel secure with the answer. Sent it in anyway.

      Delete
    2. I found the cottage you mentioned , there is a bit of triskaidekaphobia involved there.

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    3. I found it too, but I suspect there will be a debate here, come Thursday, as to the veracity of these posts.

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    4. JAWS, I have been to this Cape Cod cottage!

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  36. Kind of obscure on the back end.

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  37. I finally figured out what the intended answer is, but I am not happy with it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are reminding me of three friends I had who recovered pool tables. They never hid how they felt. (Is that a bit of a stretch?)

      Delete
  38. I really think this is a neat puzzle, and I can only suspect that a little bit of horticultural savvy is all that's keeping Blainesvillians from appreciating it more. On a more cheerful note, Dorothy Parker once said that you can lead a horticulture, but you can't make her think.

    ReplyDelete
  39. I'd call this a 48 hour challenge, with solvers thinking of the intended answer about five minutes after hearing the clue and dismissing it for two days before finally giving in.
    Spoonerisms are not really puzzles and should make you smile, not groan, think clever, not pointless.
    Will seems to pay less attention each week.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I smiled. The clever part is "a plant that might grow in either place." It is, and it does.

      Delete
    2. Me too -- I liked (a) the unusual word in the answer, and (b) EMBARGOED UNTIL THURSDAY.

      Kudos to Todd McClary (from the National Puzzlers' League).

      Delete
  40. You can grow almost anything up on Brokeback Mountain.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. POT PLOT(a piece of land where pot could be grown) → PLOT (a piece of land where anything could be grown) POT (a plant that could be "potted" anywhere.)

      Delete
    2. I wonder if all of us gave Pot Plot a thought. I did.
      Sure makes switching initial sounds easy.

      Delete
  41. I hear rumors the Pope is getting old and losing tract.

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  42. One day Mr.Spooner
    Set off in a two word schooner
    And sailed the C
    Phonetically
    He should have told us sooner

    ReplyDelete
  43. I guess I solved it. The cottage hint helped, and the canine tip confirmed. I had this answer about 5 minutes into hearing the puzzle initially, and dismissed it because of the spelling. I blame the heat.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I thought jan's hint was totally appropriate because as I know somewhat less than zero about horticulture I was only able to solve this one through dogged determination.

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    2. Of course we know what Dorothy Parker said about horticulture. (No hint here, just some recycled wit.)

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    3. Dorothy Parker also said, "Men don't make passes at girls who wear glasses," but she was wrong.

      It depends on their frames.

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    4. Italo Svevo, yes this quote has already been noted above (recycled recycled wit?). I don't find it all that witty, though, but rather obnoxious.

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    5. like a noxious weed among us?

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    6. Yes, PS, I chose my above words very carefully. I usually do.

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    7. weed " A plant whose virtues are yet to be discovered" R.Emerson

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    8. Here where i am staying -Silk trees- Mimosa- are considered a weed and even sprout at will in lawns. In Seattle they are a rare item and considered a specimen tree. Though i have seen a couple at the Ballard Locks arboretum.

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    9. Apologies for the offensive post. I always thought that Parker's quip was remarkable because she came up with it on the spot when another member of the Round Table challenged her to use "horticulture" in a sentence. But what passed for wit in the 20s or 30s doesn't today.

      Delete
    10. What is there to apologize for? This is one of the funniest and most clever quotes ever, and demonstrates creative genius. It also is not off color or obscene. I have the greatest admiration for Dorothy Parker and her wit.

      Delete
  44. Finally! Three days of frustration, and then....

    Now, I have a smile on my face as I remember a wedding nearly a half century ago.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Who remembers Amy? Or Eddie, for that matter?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amy Lowell's poem "The Garden By Moonlight" starts with the lines
      "A black cat among roses,
      Phlox, lilac-misted under a first-quarter moon"
      and ends with the questions
      "Ah, Beloved, do you see those orange lilies?
      They knew my mother,
      But who belonging to me will they know
      When I am gone."
      Eddie is Eddie Bauer.

      Delete
  46. Mallow grows in marshes, but I discourage attempting to grow a plant in a marshmallow as that would be a waste of a perfectly good marshmallow because all marshmallows by their nature are perfect and good. Plus, exchanging identical consonants does not a Spoonerism make. However, some Marshmallow Fluff and peanut butter do a Fluffernutter make and that, my friends, is one delicious sandwich.

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    Replies
    1. Indeed. I didn't bother with Somerville's virtual What The Fluff Festival last year, but I was there in 2019, and look forward to its live return this fall.

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    2. Fluffernutter-yum! Hope you can you use all the spoons to get Nufferflutter this fall.

      Delete
    3. I'm not a little obsessed with Marshmallow Fluff. Fluff's history is kind of fascinating. I highly recommend Mimi Graney's book Fluff: The Sticky Sweet Story of an American Icon.

      My ode to the Fluffernutter, written in the style of Joel Barlow's poem The Hasty Pudding...


      Fluff Piece

      Red plastic lid so carefully I pull,
      Up to the brim so pearly smooth and full;
      My knife I plunge; a hearty schmear I take
      And thus begins a Fluffernutter make;
      On Wondrous bread sponge-white I spread you thick;
      Knife remnants delicately off I lick;
      Rinse, wipe, and set some peanut butter free
      For second slice, complete the symmetry;
      Conjoin the sides! Unite! The work is done;
      From North and South, the dark and light now one.

      Let crust protect thee in thy perfect square.
      Let marshy mallow scent suffuse the air.
      Let milk accompany or, yea, a frappe.
      Such sugary delight 'round me enwrap,
      Because I'm hot (hot), say what, sticky sweet,
      From my head (head), my head, down to my feet.

      May jelly in its Concord grape remain.
      Bananas stay in tropical domain.
      Leave honey be in apiary comb.
      So Fluff and nutter, only, grace this home.
      Sweet teeth across New-England cried and ached
      And in response the Gods did Fluff confect;
      With peanut butter'd bread none could object.
      And don't forget infallible Fluff fudge!
      I lift and oozes out some creamy sludge,
      Retrieved in haste by my deft fingertips;
      All sandwiches does this no doubt eclipse;
      First bite such joy enveloping my tongue,
      Through time I travel back to mouths then young,
      That spoke so simply, honestly, and pure;
      Thank heav'n not all those taste buds did mature;
      E'er welcome are the crème, legume, and grain;
      Once finished I reach for the knife again.

      Delete
    4. Also, credit to Def Leppard for the two lines I borrowed from their song Pour Some Sugar on Me.

      Delete
    5. jsulbyrne, you truly are fluffernutty! Thanks for sharing your ode.

      Delete
  47. One warning--a flaming marshmallow thrown from the end of a stick has the same qualities as napalm when it lands on unprotected skin.

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    Replies
    1. That's why I always cover my skin with graham crackers and Hershey bars during flaming marshmallow fights.

      Delete
  48. Phew, this one took me a while! Not familiar territory to me…literally or figuratively. I guess I slept through certain classes in junior high school. Anyway, from the clues posted here (beginning with Blaine's clue), I think I finally have the intended answer. 😎

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Then again, if my answer is the intended answer, you'd think Blaine would have removed something that was posted on Tuesday. 🤔

      Delete
  49. holy mutha Alonzo church- by George I think i've got it.an old office mate of mine came up with the right plant but was trying to spoonerize with the same consonant sound 6 am and I resurrected big mike's attempt and gamboled my way to a tentative solution using some of the last hints provided hear. it was a half grand solution I still don't know why my earlier comment was removed as it wasn't even close but maybe this one will as well

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you don't know why your previous post was deleted you probably don't have the correct answer.

      Delete
    2. Your deleted post had "bower" in it. That's why it was deleted.

      Delete
    3. my deleted had dark pitch and park ditch post had which i added parenthetically soccer( ~pitch) succor sucker

      Delete
    4. This was your removed post that had both flower and bower:

      def. not the answer
      park ditch & dark pitch
      succor for soccer suckers
      neithr is flower bed and bowr fld (my "ee" key sticks)

      Delete
  50. FLOWER BOX, BOWER, PHLOX

    "A & P" >>>The Phlox genus has 67 species of both Annuals & Perennials.

    The Day Family Cottages in N Truro, MA, have been around since 1931, including PHLOX, #2. I have walked along the beach by the sweet cottages, a favorite trek from Brewster to the Outer Cape.

    Thank you, Northeast, for the tip-off to triskadeckaphobia. The lack of a #13 cottage confirmed I was in the right place. PHLOX flowed soon after.

    "Solid B" >>> Native bees are attracted to PHLOX.

    "I don't find it all that witty, though, but rather obnoxious." There are some forms of PHLOX that are considered noxious weeds, like Phlox divaricata in Colorado.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When you mentioned spoons i thought you meant or were pointing to Comfrey- as in comfrey tea. Alas.And thee is also a Cape Cod Comfrey cottage also with the Phlox one>>>??

      Delete
  51. FLOWER BOX—>BOWER + PHLOX

    But here’s my first, so-called “wild answer that I’m sure WS did not intend” (perhaps not so “wild” after all, but one that, despite my initial enthusiasm for it, I did not send in):
    FLOWERY BOWER—>BOWERY + FLOWER

    Admittedly, as a puzzle solution this answer does have some shortcomings—e.g., “flowery bower” is not a common phrase like “flower box”; “flowery” and “flower” are repetitive; and “flower” is only a part, not the whole, of a plant—but I will say this in its defense: “bowery” has a puzzle-appropriate, if less familiar, common-noun definition, “a colonial Dutch plantation or farm,” so, presumably, a flower could grow there. An alternate answer? Best guess: a bit of a stretch, so probably not. But it was fun while it lasted.

    Once I got Will’s intended answer, I considered clues that hinted at the Bower of Bliss from Spenser’s The Faerie Queene but thought they might be tmi, especially for unreconstructed Blainesvillian English majors like myself.

    ReplyDelete
  52. FLOWER BOX >>> BOWER FLOX (Phlox)

    My Hint:
    "You can grow almost anything up on Brokeback Mountain." Like the flock of sheep near the beginning of the movie.

    I found this puzzle to be invalid because there is no such word FLOX. It is not even listed in Scrabble dictionaries, let alone Merriam-Webster and all the others I checked including my New Oxford American edition. If the puzzle had stated that the plant was a homophone then it would have been legit. I am surprised I was able to solve it as I know nothing about gardening and plants. I did know BOWER though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I would have considered this puzzle excellent if Will had not incorrectly, as he always does, defined Spoonerisms as switching the initial consonants rather than the sounds. I think I fell into this trap because I am not knowledgeable about plants.

      Delete
  53. Flower Box/Bower, Phlox

    Years ago, I attended a garden wedding. The chuppah (wedding canopy) was a wooden frame, covered on two sides and the top with chicken wire. The top of the chuppah was covered in ferns; cut flowers were draped over the front edge and woven into the sides. Not truly a bower, but this puzzle brought it back to mind.

    ReplyDelete
  54. FLOWER BOXBOWER (A shaded, leafy recess; an arbor) + PHLOX.

    Anagrams to two canines: WOLF & BOXER.

    Reverse the initial letters: BLOWER & FOX.

    I solved this early last Sunday morning...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or anagrams to an athlete and a journalist: BOXER & WOLF (Blitzer)

      Delete
  55. FLOWER BOX -> BOWER, PHLOX

    > Anagram to two canines.

    BOXER, WOLF

    > Fire.

    PHLOX comes from the Greek for flame, because of the colors of the flowers. So does phlogiston, the theoretical (before the discovery of oxygen, produced by plants) substance released during combustion.

    > A river runs through it.

    I like ambiguous crossword clues, like "sewer" for "seamstress", or "FLOWER" for "river".

    > A very polite greeter.

    A BOWER.

    ReplyDelete
  56. Flower box <=> bower phlox.

    My clue in verse:

    “First a not-so-common word,
    It houses an exotic bird;”

    The Bowerbird, who builds his own bower (and decorates it with brightly colored things to attract a mate). But this is ‘bower’ in a different sense from the ‘where a plant might grow’ sense.

    “The plant goes by a curious name
    That brings to mind an ancient flame...”

    I think Jan hinted at the same etymological fact: ‘phlox’ is derived from the ancient Greek for ‘flame’.

    ReplyDelete
  57. My answer: FOLD MOUNTAIN – MOLD, FOUNTAIN,
    where mold is a plant that can grow on a (fold) mountain as well as in a fountain.

    I guess I slept through certain classes in junior high school.
    That would have been the geography class(es) covering fold mountains. At some point “fountain” did occur to me, “mountain” invited itself from there, and eventually I more or less stumbled upon “fold.” That’s how I got Blaine’s “sheep” clue (sheep can be in a fold), and Paul’s “spring” clue (another word for “fountain”).

    You’d think Blaine would have removed something that was posted on Tuesday.
    That was SDB’s reference to Brokeback Mountain (!). A colossal, once-in-a-century oversight on Blaine’s part? Or was my answer off-target after all? (Especially since nobody cried “TMI!”) I tried words no one had used in their posts—“field,” “meadow,” and “yard”—but to no avail. Anyway, intended or not, I am satisfied with my answer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is really ingenious.
      At first I thought, "no, mold isn't a plant!"
      But now I'm thinking, well, in everyday life we do consider mushrooms to be plants. Molds are in the fungus kingdom with mushrooms, so I think you're okay! (Imagine someone objecting, "Your menu says all dishes are plant-based, but these mushrooms are fungi!")

      Delete
    2. Wolfgang, as a championer of fold mountains, I applaud your effort!

      And, of course, plate tectonic enthusiasts are quite interested in all the orogenous zones.

      Delete
    3. And isn't it intriguing how the "sheep" and "spring" clues are compatible with my answer…! I wonder if WS will give it an "honorable mention." 😉

      Delete
    4. But still no call from WS! 😩
      That's why your words are all the more appreciated. Thank you, all! (+ Nice puns, WW!)

      Delete
  58. Our friend Ken Pratt (screen name: geofan) has concocted a quartet of delectable puzzles for tomorrow's Puzzleria!
    They appear in his "Worldplay" feature, and are titled:
    1. "Mushrooms in finance,"
    2. "Pre posit ion,"
    3. "University of XX State University," and
    4. "Confusion at the Olympics?"

    We upload Puzzleria! in the wee hours of Friday morning, Midnight PDT.
    Other items on this week's menus are:
    * a Schpuzzle of the Week that asks the question: "What do folks from three European nations have to do with three Hollywood words often accompanied by clapping?"
    * a Puzzle Slice that combines mnemonics, numbers and animals,
    * a Dessert Puzzle that explores the nexus between a long-running TV series and a mathematical term,
    * eight riff-off puzzles of this week's NPR puzzle (including one involving a person most all of us here in Blainesville believe we know well!)
    After you've folded up Old Glory, why not take a whirl at some of geofan's "Unfurled Worldplay!"

    LegoSpanningTheGlobeForTheBestWorldPlayPuzzles...AndDeliveringThem(AllWithoutCrashingOnASkiRun!)

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  59. The first possible answer that came to me:

    WET SEEDS ==> SET (Wiktionary - English, Etymology 2,
    Meaning 3: Alternative form of sett: a hole made and lived in by a badger. -- or --
    Meaning 6: (horticulture) A small tuber or bulb used instead of seed, particularly onion sets and potato sets. -- or --
    Etymology 4,
    Meaning 1: A young plant fit for setting out; a slip; shoot.
    Meaning 2: A rudimentary fruit.)

    and WEEDS

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  60. flower box, bower flox (phlox)

    Last Sunday I said, “When playing chess, it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on your pieces that are near your opponent’s attack workhorses,” like watching your flocks by knights.

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  61. Can phlox grow like ivy? "A phlox on both your houses!"

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    1. jan, I like it! Although the original Shakespeare is "A plague on both your houses," this small(pox) change works for me.

      Or, in an historic district, we could certainly put plaques on both your houses. ��

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  62. Sorry to be a wet blanket. I was underwhelmed by this week's puzzle.

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  63. "Flower bed" occurred to me rather quickly, but "bower fled" made no sense. However, I thought "bower" had something to do with garden-like areas, so I scouted around for a substitute b-word and came up with FLOWER BOX. I recognized PHLOX as a plant, but I was laboring under the misapprehension that BOWER PHLOX would somehow have to name both a plant and a place. A bower phlox could conceivably grow in a phlox bower, I suppose, but that would be a step beyond spoonerizing.
    So, I turned my attention to the puzzle on the radio. I honestly was unable to think of IDEA, and I was just playing around with SAN D.A.-GO / SAN D-EGGO and "objection overruled". When Dr. K responded to my comment, I decided to keep the joke going and went back and forth between "shadow of a doubt" and "reasonable doubt" before settling on the former for some reason beyond my rational understanding.
    Back to the flower box. I wondered how "bower phlox" could possibly work, but when I saw Blaine's "sheep" hint, I figured it had to. Finally, I realized what ron so clearly pointed out: "read "and" as "plus.""
    At that point, I decided to look up a definition of "bower" and found that it IS related to SHADE, so "shadow of a doubt" was actually an inadvertent clue, which I described, at first, as "creeping" out of my subconscious. But after looking up the attributes of PHLOX, I decided "springing" would be a safer image.
    Wolfgang's taking "spring" as a clue for "fountain" just makes it all even more mysterious.

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    1. I feel your pain. Sunday morning I had Flower Bed and Window Box as places, but it wasn't until Wednesday, during an attack of insomnia, that I merged the two and got Flower Box....

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  64. I too, came up with flower box and bower flox(phlox). I was really convinced the answer had floral, coral, yarrow, narrow, bright, light, row, grow, etc. I think I spoonerized every possible combo before going back to the first few words I tried.

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    1. I spent way too much time trying to make POT be the plant. I suspected it might be something like PLANT'S PLOT >>> PANTS POT. I have heard of things growing in pants, but not plants. Anyway I have had enough of all this flowery talk.

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  65. I searched in vain for a place called "Grampa's Pass" to make "pampas grass" ... no luck this week

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  66. I actually found something something called a sheet bed, a bed covered with a sheet during the winter, to protect its plants.
    So I got:
    SHEET BED and BEET SHED. Oh well, no cigar this time!

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    1. That is a good alternate solution. I wonder if Will even got to see it.

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    2. Agreed—a creative approach. I, for one, was patently unfamiliar with "phlox," so I wouldn't have gotten there. Good to see there are at least two alternate ways (mine posted above, and yours) to meet the T&C of the puzzle.

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  67. I am about to lose my power in a few minutes for about 5 hours. So don't post anything I would want to see for a bit. Unfortunately they are taking a pole and this time it is not a political pole, but my power pole for replacement. I hope they make it polar expeditious.

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    1. It would have been appropriate to leave them both.

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    2. I went for a bike ride and got back a bit ago and they were already done and gone. They left most of the old pole which will be removed later on.

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  68. Your last sentence sounds like the Freudian symbol for an old man! I hit 83 yesterday and I ain't ready to be removed!

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    1. C a p, here's to a luminescent trip around the sun! You share a birthday with the Dalai Lama and my beloved sister-in-law.

      Many happy returns (not remains) of the day!

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    2. Happy Birthday Cap!

      Don't forget this great quote from a guy who died in a plane crash:

      “When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.”

      ― Will Rogers

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    3. WW and SBD,

      Thanks a lot for your good wishes.

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