Sunday, April 24, 2011

April 24th, 2011
Easter Day

Daffodil time in the Garden

A few red tulips

Some fading Hellebores

The vibrant peony stalks

and the perennial alyssum  on the verge
of glorious yellow blooms.

Some visitors to the garden...

Still waiting for the hummingbirds and the orioles

their feeders hang in the curly willow with a welcome sign....

Everything has been watered, - the cutch grass has been engaged in a couple of skirmishes

Tomorrow the cloudy skies return
but the garden flourishes despite inclement weather
 and a late and fickle spring.

Ah, who will tell me, in these leaden days,
Why the sweet Spring delays,
And where she hides - the dear desire
Of every heart that longs
For bloom, and fragrance, and the ruby fire
of Maple buds along the misty hills
and that immortal call that fills
 the waiting woods with song?

Henry Van Dyke

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The fad is all for doing things SLOWLY, and I think that Spring has cottoned on to this idea and is applying it to her visits to the Garden.  A little here, a little there, - sip slowly and savour it all; the leisure with which the rich red peony stubs emerge from slumber and the slow ballet of leaves, opening in tiny increments their glorious greenness.

It is so very awesome that it happens at all, and the very slowness reminds us not to take Spring for granted, but to relish every gift, every bright green blade and every pregnant blossom, - yes (sigh) even the cutch grass!!

An hour in the iris and peony bed this morning, with the shovel and the trowel, digging up great lengths of cutch grass.  I can't believe how quickly it takes over, - the narrow bed along the fence line, where two years ago the sunflowers reached high for the heavens and the bees and the birds gloried in their lushness, last year became a nursery for curly willow cuttings, and somehow made great patches of cutch grass welcome as well.

The Canterbury bells I planted last year are lovely, large rosettes, but the foxgloves are a dismal failure.  I will go early to Don and Anna's greenhouse and try to get some second year plants.  The one out of a dozen that bloomed last year was so beautiful, and I can't understand why I have never been able to foster the great elegant patches of this wonderful plant that is so prevalent in English gardens.  Is it because it is so dry here, - or did I not give them adequate winter protection?  They looked so promising in the fall, and now I search in vain for any small green shoots.  I won't give up on them, - perhaps they too are luxuriating in spring's slow march into May and will surprise me as time goes on.

I brought in a dozen daffodils to put in a pitcher with some forsythia branches, - the few that weren't denuded by the mischievous blackbirds.  And some small daffodils and lenten roses to make a small bouquet for the table.

We are still under a pewter sky and as I look toward the Cawston Bench I see the tops of the hills are shrouded in what appears to be a small snow squall.

Slow indeed!!!!!