Early this week I was thinking that I’ve never seen so many robins in February. It truly feels like spring is in the air on some days, but we have to remember that a cold front could easily come through at any moment. In fact, this weekend will especially be the February we all know and remember. I hope everyone has a special Valentine to keep them warm during the upcoming frigid nights. But again, at the end of the following week, we will be flirting with 60 degrees. We are all confused, and at this point, gardeners are wondering how spring might look.
We had a beautiful (and record-breaking) snowfall a few weeks ago. Because it was cold the snow was light, and because it was windy, it did not collect heavily on any of the plant material in Shofuso’s garden. Whew! I recently spoke with a Shofuso member about his home garden. He had a full display of ornamental quince flowers in January. Although that comes as a beautiful surprise that you can try to appreciate – he happened to cut the material to bring into his home to enjoy – it can retain a bit of disappointment knowing that the call of spring may have been squandered. He mentioned that his spring blooming camellias had also flowered. A few weeks ago I noticed pink peeking out of our camellia’s buds. So far so good with our camellia keeping its buds tucked. Not so with our quince though. Our quince has started to push its flowers, but as long as it stays relatively cold, it shouldn’t fully emerge. There are a few pictures below to show you the quince’s premature push. There is also a photo of the courtyard stream just after the storm.