Over the last few days with the unusual warming trend we've had here
in upper Eastern Tennessee, I've noticed quite an active indication
that we're moving deffinately towards true Spring. The creeking
sounds of Spring are fast approaching, and it's choruses of sounds,
smells and visual images are wrapping themselves around me and giving
me comfort that once again, with or without us, Father Winter is fast
losing his grip around us.
James and I were traveling down a winding country road and as he
slowed down for a rather sharp curve at a particularly muddy spot, I
heard it. PEEPERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! My heart swelled to
almost bursting as I let the window down on my side and listened and
relished it. I have been grieving over that magic since losing Faerie
Holler. He slowed down for me so that I could enjoy it better, and we
pulled out of the curve and the moist area on either side and
continued on our way.
Now I was in high alert, and I started noticing more closely that I
could see little tight buds on some trees, and I'd see a subtle flash
of dusty pirkle (pink/purple) as someone's older clump of spring phlox
was sending out reconnaissance for hopeful true Spring sign. I would
see glimpses of clear yellow as ancient Forsythia's were popping
blossoms along old twigs. I started looking for tell-tale green
tongues of daffs tucked against houses, and started seeing clumps of
them in pastures and knew some plantings were from forgotten houses
that were long gone but the daffodils still returned to tribute their
previous housewife from ages past me.
The warmth that arrived like a taste of Summer was enough to fool the
silly Bradford pears, and everywhere I saw that at least for here,
someone had done a hard sell of the brittle things. Perfectly shaped
trees were flowering everywere I looked. But occasionally I'd see a
true older wild pear unfurling it's soft white flowers in a ditch or
along a fence line where everyone was crowding to clutter up the
property and creek lines better.
Pops of yellow started to really crank up, and nowhere did I see some
old standby hardies, the flowering Quinces, showing off their limbs.
So yesterday as James and I rode the country roads around here again,
I started seeing trees that had their hair hanging down and the limbs
like threads of green pearls blowing in the winds of the too warm,
record breaking day we had (78°!!). Willows!! WOW, I didnt' think you
could fool those standby's. But I saw more than five decking out
their hair in tight green leaf buds.
In a walk yesterday from the court house downtown (I live just off the
main road in town) I took my time returning to the house before our
road trip, and since I haven't many signs of Spring myself, I started
looking closer to what WAS showing up along the sidewalks where the
old houses are. I was quickly rewarded by just at the curve, bright
pink hyacinths, and got on my knees and sniffed their heady perfumes.
Next to them, an emerging clump of muscari were forming the first
heads of the little blue soldiers. Right next to that, Te' Te'
narcissus were blooming their little teeny perfect heads off.
Thoroughly encouraged, I walked past after my pause, and crossed the
street to further head homewards, and saw to my utter delight, the
islands of mulch around some front trees in an older brick house with
perfect grass, even in late winter, and tucked a foot apart, dinner
plate displays of deep,neon purple and eye-blinding gold crocus
underneath both trees. I crossed over the lawn and stood above them in
admiration and drank in their visible beauty. ahhhh, glorious!
The city had finally taken another neighbor's huge pile of leaves at
the end of their asphalt driveway as I approached the next cross
street where there was a most magnificent magnolia at the corner of
the yard. Noting signs of dark plum pink at the corner's of her beds,
I caught my breath as I realized her peonies were emerging from
slumber and my thoughts immediately went to the pots of my own in the
back yard who were waving flags of ferny dark plum pink hands
themselves. And above all, the Ivory Prince Hellebore that I sat in
the space next to the one tree peony for company defied me and rooted
past the openings in the quart pot and upon inspection, discovered
perfect bells formed and three blooming!
As I meandered back up the sidewalk to the house, the corner house has
a wild spot that has some scraggly Forcythia's and some vinca minor
that has little periwinkles starting to peep out. I managed I think
to salvage some vinca major for my own....Yeah, I know, I cursed it
all those years, but now that it's one of the few remaining plants, I
can tuck it in somewhere it can ramble to it's heart content.
Everywhere I see punctuations of yellow daffs scattered about like
exclamation points. Some are happy and colonies the size of dinner
plates. Others are sparce and sad with singular trying to make a stand
All in all, the Spring teaser was nice enough to get me rabid to the
upcoming season. At home, there were dark little red buds on the
Diablo, unfurling leaves on the Viburnum's I got for $1 at Lowes knows
how to bug me, teeny emerging catkins on the twisted filbert that
Ethyl refused to keep but returned to me. And all the tight fisted
sedums are opening and showing return as well. Only one loss and I
will replace it with a whole plant from the dead return to Ho-me
thanks for letting me ramble. it's good to be back. hopefully sooner
than later I will be talking about replanting and making our Faerie
Holler somewhere else. He wants an herb bed. I want veggies (he does
too) I want honey berries, raspberries, boysenberries, June berries,
he wants blackberries. He also wants Cox's orange pippin apple tree,
rhubarb, I want Honey Crisp, and plums......sour cherries would be
nice too......but then, I want forsythia, Kerria japonica,
silverbells, redbuds, magnolia's, Kolkwitzia's, Beautyberries, Spirea
ballardii, button spirea, bridal spirea, variegated hydrangea's,
hostas, woodland plants to tuck here and there.....I wanna make
another textured quilt not so secret garden, and he wants to build a
pond for frogs.......and us to listen to water. we both want a place
to have morning knosch and tea outside........it will be wonderful
keeping you all up to speed.
madgardener (maddie) gardening right now in historic Greeneville zone
7a, Sunset zone 36 at the foot of the Cherokee National Forest and