The Late Late April Show — The Frustrated Gardener

The Frustrated Gardener

Spring is arriving in slow motion at The Watch House. I’ve been watching a single bud of Narcissus ‘Golden Ducat’ striving to open for ten days, willing it to reveal the acid-yellow petals tightly furled within. My clematis have been held in suspended animation since early February, their tender shoots primed and raring to go. Fortunately they’ve been stalled rather than damaged by the cold, and snails are still too inactive to make a meal of them. I notice how Rosa banksiae ‘Lutea’, stripped of every last leaf by the gales, is hesitantly producing tiny flower buds along its naked stems. Each one looks like a tiny dolls’ house bouquet. In another year the tight buds would already have opened into clusters of yellow pom-poms the size of my fist. Of all the spring-flowering bulbs, only hyacinths have carried on regardless, shrugging off rain and snow to bloom as well…

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