The first daffodil bloomed this week. No, I’m not making this up. I’d show you a picture, but not only do I not have a digital picture (hence nothing “instant” around here), but I also have a tradition of giving away the first daffodil. I gave it to a dear friend as a “promise of good things to come”. We are working on several community projects together and we need all the encouragement we can get!
There are three more daffodils this morning. Daffodils are my annual sign that I can survive winter. I’m NOT a winter person. My winter in Iowa was torture. The few truly cold winters we have had here have been endurance tests for me. I like the normally mild winters and occasional freezes of our area. I know our freezes are harsh when we are in the middle of them, but if we look around at other regions, they are brief annoyances by comparison. So…daffodils surviving the winter and peeking their little yellow heads up give me hope that I’ll make it. Spring is just around the corner.
I’m already looking at garden catalogs. I don’t know why. I absolutely don’t need anything. I have more plants than I can care for now. I’ll have hundreds of daffodils and irises and poppies blooming in the spring. Perennials will start poking up everywhere. I have three flower beds in town that I’m managing. All of them are full of bulbs. They just need a few bedding plants and an accent plant here and there. Stuff I can get at WalMart, the local nurseries, or Lowe’s. So why do I spend hours looking at plants in catalogs? Just in case. Just in case there is something new I could add. Just in case there is something I don’t think I could live without. Just in case I get a new garden someday.
Gardening is an addiction. It’s admired and encouraged because people like to look at pretty flowers. But it’s an addiction nevertheless. I want to see flowers everywhere! I want to convince everyone in my town to grow irises so they would all bloom at the same time and make a wonderful display. I want to plant crape myrtles along the highway. I want to landscape the local park. I want to put a garden next to the school. I want to throw poppy seeds out along the road so they would grow in the median. Sometimes I drive by a house that’s devoid of landscaping and I think “What is WRONG with those people!” Then my next thought is, “maybe I could offer to help them”. When I retire I’ll probably go around annoying people with my gardening ideas!
I’ve also begun cleaning up some of the debris of fall. Lots of dead leaves and limbs and dried flowers are scattered around the yard. Everything is brown and dry at first glance. But I have to rake and hoe gently. There are little bits of green showing here and there. I have to remember where bulbs are still hiding. I have to be careful not to disturb areas where poppies will be sprouting. People used to "clean" with fire. We drove by one of the fire areas yesterday and there is already a “green aura” over it. The new grass is appearing. It will probably flourish and be more beautiful than before. Fire is one of the natural elements of nature. It’s only because we have built homes and inhabited the plains that it has become an evil element instead of a cleansing one.
The sun is shining this afternoon so I think I’ll go fill the bird feeders and check on the daffodils. I’ll post a picture from last year just so you can see the promise of spring. I can’t wait!