Friday, February 08, 2013

Tra la

Today we had no commitments and it was sunny so we went to the Botanic Gardens. We found some tree stumps on which mirrors had been mounted. They looked strange, like tiny pools of water reflecting the surrounding trees; but rather effective in the bare ground.

We inspected the new, unfinished Alpine house, which is also a bit odd, as if it could take off in the breeze and fly away to Switzerland.

The current Alpine house is just next door... though there are no doors... and as usual at this time of year has a wonderful display of spring flowers.

The colours do good to the winter-frozen heart.

They have a roof but no other shelter because they like it cold but dry.

Aconites: little balls of zing.

Outside in the open there wasn't a lot flowering yet, but these primula are bright against the brown earth.

These are the earliest blooms on one of the first of the rhododendrons. We must remember to come back and visit the bush in a week or two. It'll be glorious.

Snowdrops: not showy but always cheering.

They seem to multiply much better in what I assume is the poor soil under the trees than they do in my garden.

Home again, I admired this amaryllis. People have given me quite a few of these over the years and I can never bear to throw them away after they flower. They're rather unbeautiful when not flowering and the window shelf half way up the stair is crammed with their jungly foliage. I look at them balefully from time to time and feel I should dispose of them but then - whoosh! - one of them becomes a swan. All the normal instructions say you should let them die down after they flower and then take the bulb out of the compost for six weeks or whatever, but I never bother to do this. I just keep watering them and feed them in the summer and they flower every year. True, they're stunning for a couple of weeks and inconvenient for the next fifty. Still, when I look at that photo, I feel it's worth it.


  1. Absolutely worth it, never tried them. Thank you so much for the trip to the Botanic. Sunny here and thawing but will be a couple of months before we see bu,bs flowering except in the shops!

  2. Thanks for this post. Everything under 3 ft. of snow here. Needed the flower power!

  3. On this snowy, wintry day these flowers wre a delight to see.
    I have an easter lily that does the same thing, except I ignore it completely, then suddenly it is alive!

  4. yeah, I couldn't decide between 'are ' and 'were'......

  5. Thank you for that reminder of spring. I haven't checked for the snowdrops lately. But considering how warm it was here in January, I suspect that they are well advanced. I will have to go and remove some snow.---Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA

  6. Thank you for taking us on your stroll around the Botanic Gardens. I will put that place on my list of places to be sure to visit whenever I get to Edinburgh -

    And I may end up with stumps in my yard one day - the idea of using mirrors to decorate stumps is really heartening.