Musette’s Musings, Flamin’ Hot

Posse!  It’s time for Musette’s Musings, Flaming Hot edition.

The past week was a scorcher, getting up to 94F on Saturday.  Walking around the farmer’s market was like walking on Mercury (that’s the really hot one, right?) – with the sun banging off the concrete and frying everyone’s retinas.  People brought their dogs!  Luckily nearly every stand had a dog bowl.  I couldn’t bring TGirl to the Farmer’s Market under any circumstances because apex predator in the domestic world but definitely not in 90F heat.  She rarely stirs from in front of the fan on days like this (I’m not a fan of central air – yes, I know.  I live in the Midwest in July.  Eh. I do have window AC in the bedroom because I am not a danger noodle and even I cannot sleep in a 90F bed. )

As Cinnamon posted yesterday it’s been a weird year for the garden; as I’ve mentioned before I spent all last Autumn curating the garden, moving things to better spots, planting ‘stuff that makes more sense’ , etc.  This Spring and Summer were designated Observation Time.

Yah.  And then the rains came.

The whole place is awash in weeds.  I’ve got lamb’s quarters 5′ tall in some beds.  I spend an hour or so in early morning pulling weeds (the only time I can go out before it’s either Mercury-hot or BiteyfromHELL! out there).  But … you know what?  Largely I’ve left it alone.  I just don’t care – not ‘is that all there is?’ kinda don’t care – more  ‘yknow… that really looks Just FOINE’ don’t care.  The big stuff goes and I trim the beds.  Other than that, it’s good.

But!  Funny thing happened this season, the Season of Neglect:  I got peaches!!!  Here’s the backstory:  6? years ago I planted two peach trees (even with self-pollinating trees it’s a good idea to have a pollinator) and a nectarine tree.  Season 3 I got a bumper crop of stone fruit.

And that was it.

Mid-spring frosts killed the buds every year from then on and the trees just gave up even trying to poink blossoms out so I decided they were nicely placed shade trees and got on with my life. Back in mid-early Spring I was setting out my amaryllis pots under the central peach tree and saw a small, green peach sitting on the ground.  At this point you’d think I would’ve looked UP, into the tree…right?  Nah.  Not that easy.  Instead I wondered ‘hmm.. wonder what bird would drop a peach under my peach tree?’ (sweatergawd I am not making this up – my cognition is… odd… and it’s this oddness that explains why I am not an aerospace engineer)…. it wasn’t until I came upon 2 more and realized it was my own tree, right there! that was bearing the windfall fruit! sigh. Toldja it was odd. Intrigued, I walked over to the other tree in the Hill Border, casually glanced, but didn’t see any peaches, so I though ‘hmm.. okay.. we’ll see this through’ – and promptly forgot about them.


and… (again why I’m not an aerospace engineer)… these aren’t even from the ‘noted’ peach tree – these are from the Hill Border tree!  The other tree is a later variety and still ripening.  I had an impromptu Picking Party because old people should not ascend ladders unsupervised – 3 friends (one who does not even like peaches!) came over to pick and we had a blast.  I’ll do it again (with different friends because ain’t nobody needin’ 2 MORE bushel baskets of peaches) when the other tree ripens.

Btw – my No-bearing nectarine tree?  Fruited all the way up.  Alas, I’ve never topped that tree so that fruit is 35 feet in the air.  Lucky birds ’cause I am NOT going up there.

The scent of peaches is interesting.  Alluring but not really smelling of anything concrete and definable, they push their lush(but thin) floral notes through my scent receptors to become the sum of their parts on my tongue and, in doing so, transform into yet another completely different taste/smell.  I researched peach scents in perfume and at first I was surprised that I’d smelled so few of the ones listed on Fragrantica – then I realized that, unlike other fruit scents (apple/banana/pineapple), I never even considered peach as a ‘scent’ because, for me, it’s not.  Not a scent.  It’s an experience.  I’ve given this some thought and realized that I wouldn’t even know how to parse that particular experience into perfume.  Which is interesting because I have no problem parsing other ‘experiences’ (think CB’s Memory of Kindness (here’s a link to Portia’s gorgeous 2017 post on that glorious scent) and Ambra Grisea (the Brittany coast in early Autumn)

Before you jump on it no, the peach in Mitsouko doesn’t translate to ‘peach’ for me – the bitterness of the peach skin and the touch of the slight pith next to the stone, yes (so, okay – maybe it translates a little.  Bite me.  Or the peach ;-).  The lactones used in peach perfumery do not translate to the scent of actual peaches – at least not for me.  Then again, I’m still struggling to define the actual, natural scent of peach.  Hey!  it’s only been a bazillion years… right?  I’ve still got some time.

How does peach translate for you?  Can you actually smell it in perfumery?  Tell me what it’s like!  Tell me your tale and I’ll have the gorgeous TGirl poke a pawnail.  She’s thrilled to get some samples out of the Messy Armoire – and so am I!

Oh, Memory Lane!!!  So… I was looking for an archived post on Ambra Grisea (which is always a snipe hunt – honestly, if I didn’t have a bottle I’d think I’d made that damb thing up) Anyhoo, in the midst of all that, I came upon this post about TGirl’s coming to stay with us.  Honestly, the Universe must just wet its pants laughing at me.  TGirl certainly does 😉

LOL! Hold my beer…

  • tammy says:

    I do love the taste and scent of peaches, but the skin skeeves me out and I also do not enjoy picking it out of my teeth for hours after. (Yeah, I’m back, classin’ up the joint again….)

    Peach is the only fruity note I care for in perfume and I really do like it. My experience with Mitzy over the last several decades is that the peach note varies wildly by concentration and year. IMVHO, regardless of concentration, everything bottled up in the 21st century is so stuffed full of cinnamon that it’s difficult to pick out anything else, other than the general chypre-ish dryness. (Extrait generally the best for all notes overall) Vintage Femme has a lovely warm peach note to my nose, with cumin in more humane doses replacing the cinnamon OD one often finds in Herself.

    One of my favorite cheapies with a peach note is Evelyn by Crabtree and Evelyn. Barely a cut above Bath and Body Works in quality now, with quite nice albeit artificial rose and peach notes. It was much nicer when it first debuted, but I could say the same about myself!

  • Dina C. says:

    When I was a kid and could eat fresh peaches (more on that in a moment), I thought they smelled like Elmer’s glue. The white kind in a bottle. I realize that’s weird, but it was an undertone beneath the obvious fruity note everyone knows. As a teen I developed oral allergy syndrome, a weird anaphylaxis reaction to pitted fruits because of an allergy to birch trees. Can’t eat peaches, nectarines, cherries, etc. if they’re fresh. Canned is okay. As for Mitsouko, I can’t really get the peachiness. And I’ve tried. My backyard is getting all weedy too, but it’s too hot to go outside and pull weeds. Oh well!

    • Musette says:

      that’s fascinating, that allergy to stone fruits! And…. okay, you’re going to think I’m nuts but I just happen to have a bottle of Elmer’s Glue (the white stuff) here in my office… and I just cracked it open… and I can appreciate what you’re saying about the comparison. There’s an indefinable ‘something’ that yokes it to peaches. Huh. Couldn’t tell you what that is, though, anymore than I can smell the peach in Mitsouko, either.
      Life’s too short to stroke out weeding in near-triple digits.

  • Patty says:

    You know, I think the midwest has a cycle for fruit. Basically you have a shot every 6th or 7th year. And when it happens, it is amazing. So I planted my two peach trees, I’m putting in more next year because they all seem to love the spot I’ve planted them in, and then I’ll just settle in for the next six years and wait…..

    I do smell peaches. I was playing around in the indies to find peach scents because I really couldn’t find anything in the mainstream/niche arena. I’m not sure it’s a smell as much as it is a theoretical smell that you can bend to your will. I have this mossypeach scent that makes it very different than the ones that turn it more candy sweet, like when you put sugar/agave and cream on peaches, which make them something else in terms of smell.

    I love peaches, though, they are just the right amount of sweet. But I love red bananas more. 🙂 Which remindes me, I’m also playing with banana and pineapple fragrance as well – ones that are not in abundance! Stay cool, my luddite nonAC friend. 🙂

    • Musette says:

      LOL! I am sort of a Luddite!
      Omg. I haven’t had a red banana in ages! Now you have me jonesin’. I’m also now jonesin’ for plantanos. Yikes. The carbs. THE CARBS!!!
      For around here, the cycle depends upon mid spring freezes. If it happens when the buds haven’t yet emerged, you are okay. Alas, the past 4 years have hit stone fruit hard in home gardens (in orchards they can take better precautions but I am NOT filling a 55gal drum with firewood for some peaches!)

      oooh! Don’t forget Ananas Fizz. I love that stuff.


      • Patty says:

        Tropical fruit box. They have a banana box, and I had never had a red banana before. It tasted like all the bananas I had when I went to Costa Rica and better. Lord, they are good. But so were the little Apple Bananas. I just am not sure I can eat an entire banana box myself, but I do love bananas! They have plantains in the banana box, and I don’t really love plantains that much so I may just need to order some red bananas from them straight up. And more mangoes. Do they still make ananas fizz? Great stuff, I had almost forgotten!

  • grizzlesnort says:

    “Sweatergawd.” Thank you.

  • VerbenaLuvvr says:

    It is impossible to even get edible peaches–or apricots–where I live now 🙁 ~jealousy!~ I do love the scent of peach in perfumery but despite years of search, I have yet to find one that hits the right note for me and lasts. I don’t sense it in Mitsouko either

    • Musette says:

      Mitsouko is such a masterpiece that I cannot parse any one note therein (not that I’m all that great at that – but I can do it). It is seamless – at least for me it is.
      The Midwest is pretty cool as regards most stone fruit – as long as you have Winter hardy trees. Hope there are other consolations where you live 😉


  • Kathleen says:

    I read your Autumn 2015 post, the universe is laughing! Thank goodness you were a foster flunky and with divine intervention; TGirl is perfect for you and comforted you through so much loss. You and I are kindred spirits in that sense, as you said placing much importance on fulfilling our covenant with these precious creatures.
    The only perfume I’ve smelled peach in is MDCI’s Peche Cardinal. xoxo

    • Musette says:

      Lookit you with your squishy baby! Smooches to both of you lovelies.
      Yeah, LR (rescue owner/GM) was no fool – the moment I got Jane ALL communication stopped! LOL! Her breed is one that really needs to be understood and managed appropriately and she (LR) figured Jane was in a safe place and … well, I guess Jane did, too!


  • Maya says:

    I always enjoy your musings. I love peaches, the taste and the smell. I periodically go hunting for a great or even good peach fragrance. No success so far. As for eating peaches, I have to peel them first or it feels like I have a mouthful of “fur”. Awful! LOL.

    • Musette says:

      my first ex-DH and I were just laughing about that – I took him to MI for peach season eons ago – he’s decidedly urban and had no real idea where his food comes from – anyhoo, we picked peaches and gorged! He got Peach Fuzz Rash around his mouth – hysterical! It’s why I tend to peel mine, as well 😉


      • March says:

        OMG peach fuzz burn!! I should google it … why does that even happen?!?! I remember that as a kid, all around my mouth. I mostly slice and peel my peaches now, but I had no patience for that as a kid lol.

  • Cinnamon says:

    Eating loads of peaches. They sit in a basket on the kitchen table and the evening fragrance towards the back of the kitchen is jasmine and peach. Peach in perfume … Can’t think. Blank. Why do people make their dogs go out when it’s wicked hot? Poor paws. Don’t they do that ‘feel the pavement’ thing before venturing? I don’t think my apple tree is going to produce at all this year. The builders traumatised it.

    • Musette says:

      well, give it love and time and with any luck it’ll bounce back. I think people are clueless about a lot of dog things. I’m pretty observant and even with that I still have a lot of head-smacking moments. People. sigh.


  • Portia says:

    hey Musette,
    I’m one of the rare birds that doesn’t like peaches in my mouth but love its fantasy cohort in fragrance. I never smell exactly a peach but the interpretation in Mitsouko and Femme are fabulous for me.
    Good luck with the heat.
    Portia xx

    • Musette says:

      not as rare as you might think, sweetums! When we harvested all those peaches I found 3 people in my immediate circle WHO DO NOT LIKE PEACHES!
      Which Femme? The Mighty Mouse bottle or the vint? I have both and …. I will have to see if I can parse it out!


  • March says:

    OMG that old post! She’s gonna be a great dog for SOMEONE…. and you were right, she has been. <3 I definitely get peach in Mitsouko (or did when I could smell it better) which IMO is part of what makes it so weird. I know I’ve nattered on about this before, but as a kid our next door neighbor who was from Georgia used to fill her garage with bushels trucked up in the summer, which she then sold. My mother always sent me to pick out a basket. The smell of a garage full of ripe white peaches was … beyond belief, and sublime. My mouth waters, just remembering it. I ate peaches on our front stoop like I was getting paid for it.

    • Musette says:

      I wish you were here, now. The trees are LOADED! Not white, alas (they are stunningly sweet, aren’t they?) but the flavor is excellent! I thought of you yesterday am, as I snagged one off the tree and ate it right there!!!

      And yes… that post is blammo-funny! I. Was. So. Sure.

      …. and so was she 😉


      • March says:

        Hey I would LOOOOOOVE some fresh peaches off a tree, still haven’t had any “great” ones here, not for lack of trying! I always thought the white peaches were extra sweet while also being firm-fleshed, but the “extra” sweet could have just been, these peaches are perfectly ripe… man, I need to find some great peaches.

  • Heather W says:

    I am crazy about good fresh peaches, and when I’ve eaten all I can stand off my tree, I make sparkling peach wine with the rest. I didn’t think I’d noticed a peach note in perfumes, but then I remembered the opulent old Elizabeth Taylor scent Black Pearls. I don’t think I’ve worn that one in years.

  • Janet in California says:

    How does someone not like peaches? My favorite peach memory is on day 12 of a 21 day Grand Canyon rafting trip someone pulled out a flat of huge and perfectly ripe peaches. So good!
    My favorite peach perfume is White Peaches by Shay and Blue. Nice but not juicy enough for me!

    • Musette says:

      Inorite? But they do exist. Just ask Portia! 😉 I suppose it’s not any different from not loving…apricots..which I do not love, except dried (then I adore them). Or Delicious apples (I prefer a very tart apple, to match my soul).. or.. or..


      • March says:

        APRICOTS bleargh — they’re the zucchini of Santa Fe (how did I not notice this?) They are everywhere, people plant them in small yards as shade trees. I keep getting offered apricots (including by my landlord) and … uh no thanks.