12 March 2011

The first buds are the sweetest...

After a couple of crazy days away doing book stuff, it was so good to get home last night, even driving in fog and rain. This morning we woke to more fog and more rain, but when I looked out the window as I drank my coffee, I spied something...

The first snowdrop.

Jubilation reigned.

The change in the yard is amazing. Although some parts are still quite buried in snow, other beds are completely emerged, and the perennials and shrubs are yawning and stretching and thinking they should wake up.
Although this is a heather and not blooming now, its blazing foliage made it worthy of inclusion in this post. I can't remember if this is 'Cuprea' or 'Con Brio' or some other cultivar, but it's glorious.
I think this is 'Springwood White' heath, but these plants have been in the conifer planting out back for years, and long since lost their names. Since the 'Springwoods' are some of the hardier cultivars, I think my guess is valid.
Yes, that is snow behind this valiant spring of heath, again unfortunately a LostLabel. This was the second flower I discovered today in slogging around the garden. It is possible that I did a little bit of a victory dance. Possible. I'm not admitting anything.
Hamamelis 'Diane' is unfurling her colourful buds. A few more mild days and we'll have those gracious, curious tassel-like flowers gleaming in the spring light. The hellebores that live at her feet are still buried in snow, but other hellebores in other beds are showing up nicely and look great.
Normally, this cement trough from Ivan Higgins of Cosby's Garden Centre gets put into the greenhouse for the winter, but between windstorms, snowstorms, and other dramatics, it got buried in 4 foot snowdrift and only emerged a couple of days ago. Everything looks fine, although I'm going to throw some evergreen boughs over it to protect it from the vagaries of temperature that are bound to still happen.
The mild weather earlier in the week triggered the snowbirds to bid farewell to us and start on their journey north to their breeding grounds in the Arctic. I haven't seen any since Monday, and while I will miss them, I'm ready for this weather respite. And it was a huge delight to look out and find a whole flock of waxwings feasting on fruit that I had tossed out for our various avian visitors. They've dined on apples, grapes, orange segments, rose hips, but they really, REALLY like Anjou pears.
There's a lot of birdsong in the air, and even more bird activity around our place than we've enjoyed all winter as our feathered friends get the urge to begin courting. This little downy woodpecker was waiting for me to go back indoors so she could get some suet and seed. Doesn't she look like she's saying, "MOVE IT, LADY!"?

Although the garden and yard are a mess from months of winter, and really look their absolute worst right now...they also look fantastic because they are telling me that spring IS coming. It was fun to rake a bit of detritus up while I wandered around this afternoon, but I'm not declaring it spring yet. We know how treacherous our weather can be....

How's spring coming along in YOUR yard?


  1. I heard the birdsong this morning...I can't tell you how wonderful that was! Glad to know you are experiencing the same joy.

    Snowdrops..oh I am envious...critters get ours..sigh..yours looks beautiful to my eyes.

  2. Jubilation indeed! How pristine and virginal and incredibly white the little snowdrop is. And how full of promise. Sweet.

  3. It's so great to see the garden coming to life. Love seeing the buds!

  4. Yes, Jodi the first buds are the sweetest. They help us appreciated the "simple" things of life. I planted my spring garden today(radishes, swiss chard, snow peas, and lettuces). It felt so good to dig in the dirt!

  5. We are well into spring here, but I still enjoy looking for new plants emerging every day. I think this is what makes spring special, the newness, the freshness, the eternal hope and optimism!

  6. I'll have to live through you for now, as it is snowing yet again, and the only patches without snow are the gravel spots on the driveway and muddy road.

    But if I squint really hard, I think I can see the lilac buds swelling ;-)

  7. I love the concrete container. I'm going out to check the sunny are against my south-facing front wall to see if anything is up.

    The bird photos are wonderful too.

    I really enjoy your Blog.


    Eastern Passage, NS

  8. I have a completely bare yard. I get to start from scratch this year.

  9. There's purple crocus in my lawn, one or two days after the snow melted there, and winter aconite in fat buds! I admit to shovelling some snow off one section of garden to speed up the process…

  10. We saw our first robins today which is unusual for our area. There is still plenty of snow here, but sighting some robins make me hope the snow will not last for long. We are a long way from seeing any green shoots in East Dalhousie. Thanks for sharing these photos!

  11. That snowdrop is a sweet sight Jodi. Great to see your Bohemian Waxwings enjoying a pear! I have had clouds of them in my Crabapple orchard. Your trough is beautiful!! Four feet of snow would have protected it. Spring is in the air but you are right that it could become bitter cold again with lots of snow. Still I am savoring these warm days and enjoying watching the snow melting away. I even have some snowdrop blades breaking the soil.

  12. What a beautiful photo of the snowdrop, Jodi! I was thrilled to find two teeny-tiny blooms in my own garden this past week along with a couple of crocus blooms. They may be small, but this time of year they send a mighty message--spring is on its way!

  13. Jodi I love that photo of the waxwings. Such sleek birds. Your snowdrop looks like it could hardly wait to bloom before it got out of the ground! Our snow is quickly depleting here and we had a such a wonderful day walking around in the sun. No signs of plants yet but it will come soon enough.

  14. It is so beautiful and special to be seeing only one snowdrop in one photo! That is your special prize!

  15. Ooh, I do so agree after all the months of snow. Spring is just glorious!

  16. Jodi, I'm amazed by the bare ground and flower buds you already have showing! The only bare ground in my Maine garden is right along the foundation and the mud in the driveway. Flower beds and buds are still buried under about 2' of slush. -Jean

  17. I love the pics of the snowdrops!


  18. Yea! It looks like Spring, Jodi! I know - there are always little Wintry reminders... but You have a good start! Snowdrops! :-)

  19. Hooray! Spring is happening in your gardens. I love your sedum container.

  20. Brrr! Your spring still looks much much chillier than our coldest winter Jodi! That little snowdrop is just pure perfection :)

  21. I'm right there with you Jodi. What a wonderful welcome home!

  22. About the bulbs and the chattering from birds, yesterday was exceptionally warm in Fredericton for this time of the year. I heard an owl hooting from a near by tree the first thing in the morning. Then I rushed to my flowerbed to find my tulips already about six inches tall!


  23. The first buds are the sweetest indeed! Your photos take me on a journey of warm memories! The snowdrop shot is magnificent and the waxwings brought forth an audible sigh! Thanks to twitter for finding you. Warm regards,


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