How Hollyhocks Came to New Mexico

Publication Type
Publication Year

DISC, 2017: 253.

Rudolfo A. Anaya

How Hollyhocks Came to New Mexico is a fanciful folk tale that helps explain the beautiful flowers that can be seen in all parts of the Southwest in the summer and fall. --from book's back cover


Escaping Herod's wrath, the Holy Family accepts the offer of the angel Sueño to fly them from Bethlehem to Egypt. On the way, true to his name, Sueño falls asleep and brings them to New Mexico instead. Safe from Herod, Jesus and his parents live peacefully and happily for a time with the Native peoples of the land. When Sueño finally returns to fly them back home, Joseph leave his shepherd's staff as a gift for the people of this wonderful country, planting it firmly into the ground. Summer rains cause the staff to sprout colorful hollyhocks, which in Spanish are called Varas de San José. In the fall, the flowers' seeds spread across the land, bringing the graceful and lovely flowers to every home in New Mexico. --adapted from publisher's statement