The Earth gives us sanctuary and sustains us in all things. Aside from being a provider, she is also a designer, inventor and teacher among many other things. She is kind but can never be tamed. That last is quite likely what saves us all from ourselves in the end.
We came back from our vacation to a sharp drop in temperature. Our friends told us that while we were gone the temperature had gone up to the 60°F for a couple of days and mostly hovered above 50°F for the rest of that period. I can see the result of warm temperatures in our garden. Roses, hydrangeas, tree peonies started to bud. The silver maple in the front yard has blossomed. The crocuses and snowdrops are blooming.
Then two days after we came back, the temperature dropped again, combined with a high wind that resulted in a wind chill below 0°F. Last night the temperature was in a teens and today it is barely above freezing. It’s de ja vu of last spring. Plants started budding only to get frost burn. We didn’t have any hydrangeas last year for this reason and the first round of roses looked awful.
I don’t even know how the honeybees are. They’ve been so quiet, no sign of dead bees in front of the hives. We weren’t here when the temperature soared up to see if they were out cleansing. They’ve been too quiet for my liking and I have no way of checking on them. It’s either too cold or too windy to open the hives up for inspection. To be on the safe side, I have ordered one more package of bees to be delivered in May.
Though it will not be a promising spring, I still look forward to it. It’s time for me to start tomato, pepper, and eggplant seedlings and prep tropical plants in the basement for a warm and less seesaw temperature outside. In a little bit over a month the seedlings should be able to set their roots in the garden and tropical plants will enjoy real sunlight. And, hopefully, the hives will have survived another winter.
I’ve been looking for flowers that bloom in autumn when nothing else will bloom. I’m just trying to give our garden some color and the bees a late snack on any day that is warm enough for them to come out of their hives. Not that many plants bloom at this time of year even the Goldenrod have already faded.
After some searching, I found Waterlily Colchicum and Fall White Crocus and planted them in late September. Saffron also blooms in autumn but somehow they have not produced flowers this year. I harvested some Saffron last year but this year there are plenty of leaves but no flowers. Hopefully some will produce some flowers before it gets too cold.
I actually encountered the Waterlily Colchicum for the first time a couple of years ago at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden when I attended the Chili Festival. It was a love at first sight. There was a large patch of them blooming but I didn’t know what they were until I found them in a plant catalog. Here they are, a beautiful pink water lily look alike on dry land.
It’s nice to see colors in autumn that are not orange, yellow or red. Hopefully there will be more of them next autumn.