Late Winter, or Early Spring?

It’s too early in spring (or too late in the winter) for very many plants to be blooming in the garden. In fact, the garden is sleeping and the only flowers in it right now are there mostly because our landscaping project is complete and the new plants are occasionally in bloom when delivered by the nursery.

The fruit trees are just beginning to break bud (and I have to spray the peach tree one last time as a hedge against the dreaded Peach Leaf Curl… if I don’t do it this weekend, it will be too late and the leaves will seem fine at first, only to shrivel and erupt with nasty carbuncles before they fall in twisted agony off the tree), the roses are sending out their first cane shoots, and the tiny patch of weed-infested grass we grandly call a “lawn” is a soggy yellow, matted mess.

Only the daffodils and hellebores are in full bloom. And, of course, the extravagantly gorgeous cymbidium orchids I’ve been snapping up at Costco and Trader Joe’s (at less than half the price the florists charge for plants of equal size). These orchids love our climate enough to live outdoors in protected areas in pots. Can’t decide whether the chartreuse with the flamboyant ruby center is my favorite one, or the buttery yellow with red freckled throat that screams “Spring!”

Here are a few flowers that successfully brave the frosty mornings and many rain-soaked days we’ve had over the last few weeks.

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