Time may be a social construct, but Spring arrives reliably year after year. Paper calendars are optional.
The first bulbs emerge in February, a little pre-season treat. In our garden, that means hyacinth and once-upon-a-time, crocus. I haven’t noticed the crocus in recent years, but given their small size, they may simply be growing out of view.
Soon the narcissus follows, bright and showy and strong.
Freesias are my new favorite. They multiply year after year, adorning the garden with an assortment of color and an intoxicating scent. I planted one assorted packet several years ago, and have reaped the reward of purples, reds, pale yellows, and the prolific whites. They dazzle our passersby from the curb garden and along the curving ramp to our front door.
As the flashy bulbs finish for the season, perennials carry on with the show. Bright pinks, lavenders, and yellows contrast against the ever-present greens.
Shiny new growth emerges on all the plants like a chick from an egg, small and tender at first, then vital and strong.
It’s not all fun and games. The weeds emerge, even with our meager rain, opportunistically growing beneath the established ground cover. They grow parallel to the lacy foliage of the California poppy, perhaps thinking I won’t notice.
They’re no match for this gardener.
As I hobbled to and from the car earlier this year, I would bend down and pluck one or two weeds. Now that I’m fairly mobile, I’m methodically clearing them from the garden.
The worst of the weeds gather near the curb, so I sat on the pavement there and got to work.
Over a few weeks, I worked my way down both sides of the drive, around the raised bed known as the curb garden, and then finally into the main garden.
Getting lost in thought as I pull weeds and tidy the beds is wonderfully therapeutic. It helps keep the worrying thoughts at bay. I hear bird song from the trees. I try to count bees, smiling to myself when I lose track. An abundance of bees is essential for our survival. My garden is content to do its part.
Occasionally a lizard darts out of its hiding place and they always give me a start. They too are a gift to the garden, so as my nervous system relaxes, I count my many blessings and carry on with my day.
To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow. – Audrey Hepburn