Thursday, March 10, 2011

Late Winter in Charlotte

Zillions of forsythia blooms were on my mind as I enjoyed the weather last Saturday. I thought about how they had been belles at the ball, the perfect antidote for a winter gray mood, only a few short weeks (days??) ago.

But then the skies had cleared and the days had warmed and eyeball-stabbing yellow became kind of obnoxious.

Are you ready for them to calm down and leaf out already?  I know I am.

How would it be to change out a few bright yellow daffodils for white ones and yellow crocuses for purple?  These were a couple of Notes to Self for next year.

Later that same day, I picked up A Southern Garden by Elizabeth Lawrence, and was tickled to read this:
Everyone greets the first daffodil with the feeling that there cannot be too much sunlight or too much yellow in the world.  But a few weeks of jasmine, forsythia, and the narcissus King Alfred bring the conviction that there can be too much of anything.
 Don't you love that?!

Ms Lawrence goes on to say:
In this frame of mind, I began digging up the masses of forsythia and jasmine that had overgrown the shrub border, offering them to all those new enough to gardening to be willing to take anything offered, and going about from garden to garden to see if anyone was discarding pink.
I also dig up several brand new forsythia shrubs every spring -- wherever the branch tips touch the ground, they root.   A  two or three year old shrub is adorable with its earnest sprays of flowers, and I have been known to save a few for the edges of the woods.

But, really, do I want any more full grown specimens?  One look out across the neighborhood and it's "enough already!"

I've never gone from garden to garden looking for anyone "discarding pink," but it makes me nostalgic thinking about it.  Maybe I will when it gets a little warmer.

For now, these pink (-ish) trees in my neighbors' yards satisy that fresh color craving:

Redbud (Cercis canadensis) in my neighbor's woodsy yard.

Magnolia 'Jane.'

I cut out the screaming forsythia hedge in the foreground for you -- you're welcome!


  1. My Jane is blooming and though small, it is great to see the pink swirls of color opening. I bought a forsythia and found I could divide it into four small shrubs ---spreading my little bursts of yellow along the property edge. Hooray!!
    I haven't seen any redbuds as far along as the one you shared....this week I bet I will.

  2. No one's reaching for the sun glasses here... yet.

  3. Heh - there won't be blooming forsythias here for at least another month. Daffodils might start poking leaves through the ground by the end of March, but they won't bloom till April. At least the snow is melting and I can see parts of the yard. This is a drab time of year here - snow gradually disappears, but it still goes below freezing almost every night (and some days), so nothing grows. Lots of brown everywhere, but the days are longer.

  4. I feel that way about orange. Waay too much orange in the world.

    That said, I'm pretty sure there could never be enough pink (in the garden).

  5. Hello. Also I look forward to spring and on sunny forsythia bushes. I have it in your garden, but one (I have only 300 square meters). I like to look like in the parks is growing a lot and they form a yellow spot Gracious, on the background of green grass. Yours

  6. love that bright yellow... very spring.

  7. Our forsythia and daffodils are about to start, so they will be welcome. Well at least the daffodils. Entire hedges of forsythia get to be a bit much. The rosebud is a beautiful sight in the woods. George

  8. I agree, Daricia, at first the bright yellow forsythia is so welcome, but after a couple of weeks I am yearning for the pinks of the redbud! beautiful photos...

  9. And by the way, all we see is snow on the ground today! my daffodils are just poking their green tops through the cold, hard earth. can't wait for some color!