Indoor gardeners are a hopeful bunch. We keep the blossoms and greenery of our favorite house plants alive and lovely. Whatever the season, they bring color, texture, and freshness to the home or office. A common spider plant, philodendron, or orchid never ceases to surprise a humble gardener with their resilience, even when watering is neglected or it is left on a drafty window sill.
In the last frosty weeks of winter, my hands are longing for the feel of dirt. This is when I force spring bulbs. In the fall I buy a variety that I store in a cool spot until March, then I plant them in small decorative pots. Hyacinths are easy to force in soil or water, and within a few weeks, a fragrant, long-lasting bloom sweetens the air. I also start a mix of daffodils in larger pots that will go on the porch to be activated by the bright vernal light, once the nights warm. Forcing bulbs is a heartening ritual that brings strength to my bones and a feeling of being rooted and ready for a new season of growth. Continue Reading→
A lion of winter roars no more in the Northeast as March welcomes spring. The angle of the vernal sun is at its equinox, an annular balance of day and night. With chilly temperatures and more than a few snowy Nor’easters this month, it’s hard to be feeling springy. Yet, where the sun reaches the bare Earth, she warms, rousing her fertile mud to sprout a miracle.
When wellness walking at this time of year, I look for the first spring flowers along an oak-lined path near the old town cemetery. Through layers of composting leaves and lingering patches of snow, an early blossom emerges. These tiny flowers are scilla siberica. They defy the coldest spring temperatures and still bloom in brilliant large patches, thriving in the rich organic peat. As the season of hardship ends their hardiness is a reminder that the perennials will spring forth with color and beauty. Beyond the winter blues, this little blue jewel appears as a symbol of resiliency, a gift for having survived the dormant months. Continue Reading→