Spring Comes Softly
By Gail Kittleson
And then the day came when the risk to remain tight, in a bud, became more painful than the risk it took to blossom. — Elizabeth Appell, writer
Outside our house, this leafing bud reminds me our row of lilacs harbors promise.
Inside, my Christmas cactus is up to its second-time-around Easter blooming.
I’ve never been a big fan of kalanchoes, but this particular plant blooms twice a year, and its tiny, cheery blossoms are winning my heart. I move both cactus and kalanchoe outdoors in summer.
Every day now, even if the wind’s blowing like crazy and the thermometer says otherwise, we know Spring is here . . . in spirit, at least. Something like knowing your age, but not acting like it, or feeling young in spite of your birth date.
The row of lilacs I planted about twelve years ago from my mother-in-law’s starts, originated before the turn of the century, with her grandmother. Such history, even in simple plants. Lilacs seem simple to me, embellishing Spring with their gifts, then taking a back seat the rest of the season.
Their blooms may not last as long as day lilies or petunias, spanning nearly the whole summer. But who could forget lilacs’ intoxicating, heady aroma? In a nearby alley, I slow my steps to sniff the rich dark purple flowers. Positively lush!
Obviously, the photo for this scene lives only in my head. Guess it’s clear—I’m all undone by Spring!
About the Author:
Gardener/writer Gail Kittleson has been gardening just about everywhere she and her husband have lived, including Senegal, West Africa. Her favorite thing about gardening is the survival of plants over harsh Iowa winters, the anticipation of new growth, and eating fresh salads. When she’s not gardening she’s writing memoir and women’s historical fiction novels and teaching a creative writing class. Gail writes from northern Iowa, where she and her husband enjoy gardening and grandchildren. In winter, Arizona’s Ponderosa pine forests provide relief from Midwest weather and a whole raft of new people and stories.
Gail’s memoir, Catching Up With Daylight, paved the way for fiction writing, and her debut women’s fiction novel, In This Together (Wild Rose Press/Vintage Line) was released on November 18, 2015.You can learn more about her at http://www.gailkittleson.com.
To read Gail’s other garden posts click here.
Tina Susedik, Author said:
My cactus just started it’s second round of blooming, too. Nice to see blossoms somewhere – even if it’s in the house. Nice post.
Thanks, Tina. You must live in cold country, too?
Caryl McAdoo said:
I love the Spring, too, when soft green buds appear, then break forth into joy and offer their leaves to shade us or just be beautiful. I love the early bulb flowers like hyacinths, daffodils, and tulips! I’m in Texas so we’re into bluebonnets outside now! Spring is the BEST! 🙂 Thanks for the post, Gail! Be blessed!
Thanks for stopping in, Cary. Daffodils and tulips are so cheery. Love them. I MUST visit Texas one of these days–NEED to see bluebonnets up close and for real!
Gail Pallotta said:
Hi Gail, What a neat post. I love the quote about the bud, and I love lilacs. Thanks for sharing your thoughts for spring with us.
That quote really struck me too, Gail. The whole idea of risk connected to blossoming intrigues me. Thanks for taking the time to stop by.
June Foster said:
Lovely post, Gail.
Thanks, June. Do you have lots of flowers where you live? Will it bother you to leave them when you move?
Catherine Castle said:
I have some lilacs in my garden and I love to be on the deck when they’re blooming. The sweet scent reminds me of my mother, whose favorite cologne was lilac.
Ummmm . . . seems to me lilac was a more common aroma in days gone by–at least it appears often in 1800’s novels. A topic for some research, eh? thanks again for having me this week, Catherine.
Ann Ellison said:
Love this time of year. My two roses are loaded with beautiful red and pink flowers. They small so good.
Oh, Ann – I can imagine that wonderful scent. Could you send a picture? It’ll be weeks before the roses bloom here.
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