Tag Archives: tulip

The Winter Is Past

“Arise, my darling,
my beautiful one, come with me.
See! The winter is past;
the rains are over and gone.
Flowers appear on the earth;
the season of singing has come,
the cooing of doves
is heard in our land.
The fig tree forms its early fruit;
the blossoming vines spread their fragrance.
Arise, come, my darling;
my beautiful one, come with me.”

Song of Solomon

First Day of Spring and First Flowers: Crocus & Snowdrops

The first day of Spring was a few days ago and it went unnoticed, I’m sad to say, on this blog.

I think today we should celebrate Snowdrops and Crocus–the earliest of bloomers; yet, almost the only types of flowers I have not had the privilege of planting. I went to a local store a few weeks ago to get bulbs, but they didn’t have Snowdrops and they had sold out of Crocus. My husband’s daughter, however, had beautiful Crocus and Snowdrops in her garden when we drove to see them yesterday.

The Crocus:

The feet of people walking home
With gayer sandals go-
The Crocus-till she rises
The Vassal of the snow-

Emily Dickinson (further reading click link to my blog post about The Crocus)

Interesting note: The Greek word “krokos” means “saffron”.

My goal: Get Crocus and Snowdrops in 2010. In fact, I’ll make a list of plants I want to acquire so that I won’t forget at the end of the growing season.

I’ve seen a lot of poems referring to crocus as the first flower of spring, but isn’t the snowdrop the first flower of spring? So, those poems should read, Ah, the crocus, second flower... Check out the weekend gardener for confirmation of this fact and a list of the earliest blooming flowers.

Now, to what is growing in my garden–the mid-Spring bloomers: tulips and daffodils.

The beginning of Columbine’s return–a good memory for me now.

I believe these are the beginnings of my chives, but at this point, I would be very much afraid to “taste” that theory.


Leopard’s Bane


What I’m getting ready to plant:

I have a very large rock planter in front of the house that I didn’t get to last year.

I’m getting ready to plant it as soon as we get the top soil brought in and mixed with the wonderful, aged cow manure we got from our neighbor the other day.

This will be a colorful assortment of flowers arranged around, what I think may be a quaking aspen. I’m not positive, though, about the tree choice. Here are some of the bulbs–peony, echinacea, lilies, clematis:

And some hollyhock seeds my dad gave me at the end of last year. I’m not sure how I’ll start them.

Maybe like my son did. These are his flowers and herbs he grew in school and gave to me a couple of weeks ago with the request: please keep them alive. So far, so good.

Any crocus in your part of the world? Snowdrops? Any plants from last year coming to life?

Happy Spring gardening adventures!

Tulips in Early March?

Remember Emily’s poem, These are the Days When Birds Come Back? Well, apparently, because of our early spring, these are also the days when the tulips push up.

Confession: I didn’t plant any crocus last year! I went back over my entries this morning (in this blog–wow, memory lane!!) and I did not plant crocus. After reading Jennifer’s blog, I was starting to seriously wonder if the voles had eaten my underground garden, but apparently, I just didn’t plant a big enough one!

I’m on a quest–I want crocus and snowdrops. I will not be deterred this year. How did I let it slip by?? How did I forget to order the bulbs?

Here is Emily’s poem about tulips as I sit and contemplate the early spring and the possibility of flowers on this foggy, 54 degree day in Zone 6. The Royal Star Magnolia is budding, the Sand Cherry is developing fine little tips, and the tulips push up from the ground:

She slept beneath a tree-
Remembered but by me.
I touched her cradle mute-
She recognized the foot-
Put on her Carmine suit
And see!

(15) The early years of Emily’s life

We Will Rise like Tulips

She slept beneath a tree
Remembered but by me.
I touched her cradle mute;
She recognized the foot,
Put on her carmine suit, —
And see!

Emily Dickinson, 15

In her letters to a friend, Emily writes, “Did you ever know that a flower, once withered & freshened again, became an immortal flower,–that is, that it rises again? I think resurrections here [in my garden] are sweeter, it may be, than the longer and lasting one – for you expect the one, & only hope for the other.”

We know that Emily loved perennials–especially bulbs–because of this quality. I must admit, I share it with her. I’ve always preferred herbs and other perennials to annuals because it is a joy to see them come year after year after year. They’re hearty–like the tulip I found in the pile of yard waste last Spring. They give you hope in something greater than living and dying.

Maybe we will continue on, just as these bulbs do.


The tulip was brought from Turkey to Europe in the 1600’s and carries some heavy symbolism. Here is a quote from the Teleflora blog site: Please check them out at http://www.teleflora.com/flowerblog/

Although different tulip colors carry distinct meanings – yellow tulips symbolizing cheerful thoughts, white conveying forgiveness and purple representing royalty – a Turkish legend may be responsible for the red tulip’s symbolism. The story goes that a prince named Farhad was love struck by a maiden named Shirin. When Farhad learned that Shirin had been killed, he was so overcome with grief that he killed himself – riding his horse over the edge of a cliff. It’s said that a scarlet tulip sprang up from each droplet of his blood, giving the red tulip the meaning “perfect love.”

The 11th wedding anniversary flower, it’s said that the tulip’s velvety black center represents a lover’s heart, darkened by the heat of passion. With the power to rival roses in their red variety and the sweet charm to express simple joy when yellow, it’s no wonder that in addition to all its other symbolism, in the language of flowers, a tulip bouquet represents elegance and grace.

My search for one of our previous Dickinson flowers–the Snowdrop–brought me to the “Snowflake.” I thought, maybe, the store had misnamed the flower–but it turns out, they are two different flowers altogether. Here is a picture of my Snowflake,


I’ll plant it, and continue to look for the Snowdrops.

I found the Snowflake in an unusual spot. I was taking the grandkids out to buy flowers for their little sister who was in the hospital, and we saw it among the others–the tulips, hydrangeas and lilies. Each child was able to pick out one flower. Two chose the hydrangea–and one the lilies. They can take their little sister home and plant their flowers and watch them come up every year to remind them of the joy they should feel that she is alive.

Bulbs are a miracle, aren’t they?

Do you have a favorite one in your garden?