Spring Forward

Even though we have just turned the clocks back to daylight savings time and are savouring that extra hour of sleep, I am planning ahead for spring.  Every fall I ask myself why do I work outside in the freezing cold to plant bulbs?  Yes I know, it’s good exercise, there is the satisfying crunch of leaves underfoot, fresh air is good for you and you can work up an appetite for a hearty bowl of homemade soup, all of the above are correct, but the main reason is this.

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Okay, so that is not mine, it is a property along the water which has an old mansion in need of updating and a large wooded lot, but someone in the past planted daffodil bulbs among the trees and they have reseeded themselves over the years so that we could have this glorious show every spring.  

This is mine.  Certainly, reseeding has never worked for me, but maybe you need heirloom bulbs.  I bought mine at the grocery store as by the time I got around to visiting the nursery the selection was sparse, although I did have good luck with this hot pink tulip bulb last year.

 Whatever I plant looks nice the next spring, then eventually thins out and disappears, and I can’t blame the squirrels as they don’t like daffodil bulbs.  

Gathering Nuts

Squirrel Gathering Nuts – 2010

They have great fun relocating the tulip bulbs however, (and munching on my Thanksgiving squash), although this year I am going to outsmart them by throwing some human hair, courtesy of my last haircut, into the hole as a deterrent.  

    I have a few crocuses scattered here and there too, always the first sign of spring, but I don’t have much luck with them either.  Maybe the squirrels save them for desert.  

    I saw this display on one of my walks last year and loved the mix of colours – so cheerful looking on a rainy spring day.

     No matter what you think about climate change, the seasons do seem to be shifting.   It’s hard to know when to plant now that the falls are so mild and extend well into December.  If you plant too early and we have a mild spell in January the bulbs are pushing up through the ground and then are deluged with a foot of snow and two more months of cold weather.   The first week of November I still had lettuce I had planted late August, and some strawberries although they had not ripened.    

A few roses were still blooming, while the trees were changing colour. 

  Even the geraniums were putting on a late show.

I don’t do much in the garden to prepare for fall so I really can’t complain.   My thirty or so rose bushes (most of them easy care Pink Double Knock Outs) are better pruned in the spring, and I just let the lavender, hydrangeas, and hibiscus die off, as protection for the roots over the winter.   Once the patio furniture is put away and the last of the leaves mowed up, the yard looks bare, but somehow it is a nice sight.  If it’s a warm day you can sit outside and read and catch the last rays of sunlight, and not feel guilty that you should be doing something gardenwise – watering, weeding or raking. 

The garden bench and birdbath have been brought into the garage,

and the birdfeeder set out ready for the winter and the cardinals to arrive.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 To everything there is a season…..as lovely as autumn is, it will soon be the season for soup and hibernating, because one of these days we are going to wake up to this!


Song of the Day:  Turn turn turn – The Byrds  – music link