THE ARRIVAL OF SPRING
Spring has arrived in this part of the world, and it is a beautiful day here on Norfolk Island. Although a little of the winter crispness lingers in the air, especially in the evenings, there is no doubt that we are entering the time of year when nature responds joyfully to the lengthening days and the warmer air.
There are new calves on the Common and in the paddocks, and the shrubs in the garden are full of buds and new shoots. They are showing the benefit of our lovely winter rains.
The bees are busy, too.
Funny thing about bees. Whenever I see them buzzing around the blossoms...they just love the lavender and pineapple sage in the bed in front of our house....I always get the feeling "all's right with the world."
Living in a sub-tropical zone, perhaps we are not so conscious of the seasonal variations here on Norfolk Island as in the temperate and cooler zones. Many of your lovely bulbs and cottage garden plants yearn for a colder winter, so they can bury themselves and go to sleep while the frost covers the ground. We are compensated by the rich foliage colours and showy flowers of the tropical plants around us
But that does not stop us trying to emulate our gardening friends from Europe and North America!
Take these daffodils, grown and arranged by our friend Edie Mack. When Edie planted her bulbs some years ago, we told her that she could only expect to get a year or two out of them here in this climate.
But we forgot to tell the daffodils, and year by year, not only have they emerged in their glorious gold formation each year in Edie's garden, but they have multiplied magnificently. I don't know if it is the care and loving attention, or if Edie is talking to them in just the right way, but they are always magnificent at this time of year. This particular arrangement was the prize for the lucky winner of the raffle at the White Oak Club last week.
I have just a few of Edie's bulbs in my garden. I see that several of the green spikes have poked through the ground without me even noticing. They are partly hidden among the untidy cluster of opium poppy seedlings that faithfully appear each year and provide me with a brief, but very welcome show of pink blooms each Spring.
Any day now, I hope I will be able to pick my own little bunch of daffodils. Then I will know that Spring has truly arrived here at Devon.