There has been such a long run of cold wet weather that it's been hard to get into the garden and inspect what is going on. At last! A few sunny days last week and all the old friends appear. What I love about this time of year is that areas which were previously completely empty and glum are suddenly brightened, as if overnight, by the arrival of some small flower.
|Witch Hazel/Hamamelis, I think|
First, the terribly large, apparently boring bush at the side of the patio suddenly bursts into tiny delicate white blossoms that have a beautiful smell. Hello, Witch Hazel.
Then the darkest dampest corner of the garden has it's moment. Apparently nothing in the world likes to grow there - apart from Hellebores!! - there are huge clumps of the lush white and purple flowers there are the moment (they're not called Lenten Roses for nothing). The rest of the year the bed is a bit yawny with nothing but great sprays of dark green hellebore leaves, but right now it's a knockout.
My favourite, most tiny performer in the garden over the last month has been the little Iris. I planted lots of bulbs a few years ago, to see if I could get some more flowers going - we're a bit of a shrubbery most of the time - these are always so very pretty winking at you in the cold. How reassuring they are, the little frontrunners of another lovely gardening year?!