Winterthur, Delaware on March 13, 2020
Legacy of Henry Francis du Pont, 1880-1969, American
It is not only that the flowers are ephemeral and are so called, glory-of-the-snow being the first to appear;
Also ephemeral are the changes of this time between winter and spring: the threshold of spring.
In winter, almost everything is a shade of gray and brown;
until other colours appear at the beginning of spring: interspersed, speckled, mottled among the gray-browns
A crabapple cultivar whose flowers will bloom in the red with which it is already specked
This overlay of spring on winter renders the landscape ethereal: a colour wash over winter gray-blue-browns.
Two trees are in bloom at this time of year in Winterthur: the yellow cornus florida
Cornus florida seen through the branches of a Japanese maple whose feet are in glory-of-the-snow
and star magnolia
Lichen competes with ivy to reach the tops of the trees.
and golden moss leads you into the woods
Of the bushes, the bright yellow forsythia is in bloom,
the ivory and mottled pink Pieris Japonica cultivars,
the earliest of the azaleas is also in bloom: a glowing pink hybrid from Korea.
Of the flowers, it is glory-of-the-snow (chionodoxa forbessi) which is the first of the ephemerals
in large drifts under the beeches and the poplars
blue-purple with white eyes
glory-of-the-snow beneath a Japanese red maple
Surprised to find themselves almost keeping pace for height with the peonies in their beds.
Lenten roses are in bloom
A rare floret of Spring crocus
Amur adonis is in bloom but not fully yet everywhere
And everywhere a washing away with the rain of winter shapes and colours towards spring.
But very gently. You cannot see it. You simply mark the changes. They come quickly at this time of year. Ephemeral.
Crown of a dawn redwood
Seedpod of the magnolia grandiflora which never fell after the seeds dispersed
Buds of the star magnolia
Largeflower winterhazel on the point of flowering
The hydrangea seems the only plant which has remained immobile since winter, offering no hint of a spring to come.
Hydrangea whose fragile flower heads remain intact through winter
The Hippocampus overlooking the old swimming pool is solitary. Surrounded by grays and silver-greens.
Antcipating his companions of May
All a wonder year after year after year.