I spent much of yesterday tidying up the garden and feeling unsettled, maybe even a bit melancholy at the beginning. Like something was out of place and I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. It’s a feeling I don’t usually have here as I’m cutting, planning and imagining, but it was there nonetheless and I embraced it the way one might a porcupine or a dog who’s rolled on a dead fish. It happens. I’ve seen it.
That’s the thing about gardening. You can begin it feeling blah, and end the day in a better state. And who couldn’t use some cheer amidst the uncertainty that we all find ourselves in at the moment? If there’s anything to be grateful for it’s the fact that spring is here, a bit chilly, but it’s here and that means we can either binge watch a bunch of meaningless crap on TV, unless it’s Monty Don, or head out to the garden and find things that really give us something to anxiously anticipate. I chose the latter and this is what’s happening in late March. It’s not much, so think of it as a prelude to what’s to come.
The hellebores are in full flower right now and I can’t get enough of the double pink blooms of the one pictured at the top of this post. Isn’t it lovely? I have two other varieties, both have almost black foliage, but they don’t grow as enthusiastically as the pink one. Don’t ask me their names. I found them, tagless, at an end-of-season plant sale at a big box store a few years ago. They were healthy looking and for a buck each, they screamed “BUY ME!”
I tucked a bunch of crocus bulbs in the lawn a few years ago while my husband was at work. It was necessary since he’s very particular about “his” grass and I’m not so much. Matter of fact, I’m of the less is more ideology. Less grass, more garden. But these darling spring crocuses return every year and I must remember to add more this fall. While he’s at work, of course.
By mid-May, these reddish-pink peony eyes that remind me so much of lipstick in the dirt will look like this…
Like I said, there isn’t much happening above ground in early spring, but it’s enough to know that life is churning below and in the weeks and months ahead, this garden of mine will transform. Adding to the anticipation, I received messages from two nurseries that plants I ordered would be arriving earlier than expected due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Is this the silver lining? I’m completely unprepared.
Yesterday I finished some cleanup outside. Blah is right for today. Today I started a few more seeds, but more the problem was making newspaper seed pots. But it’s done. Next on my list, crocus! I think I might have convinced my husband to let me plant bulbs in the grass. I promised he could mow them down and it wouldn’t kill the grass. Any other early season bloomers?
Heather Blackmore says
Plant spring-blooming crocus in the fall. Muscari, Scilla, snowdrops, summer snowflake and daffodils are a few more of my favorite bulbs for fall planting. For great early blooming perennials, I love hellebores. They’re perennial and the flowers and foliage are gorgeous.