Seeing and smelling your honey scented bottlebrushes, Fothergilla gardenii, against the merlot hued emerging Cotinus coggygria leaves brings twinges of proud endearment from a serendipitous shrub pairing.
Welcome back Tulipa viridiflora ‘Spring Green’. Your massed planting in the knot garden quadrants promises to be one for the annals of archival record keeping here in the Fairegarden, even as Kitty steals the stage, sleeping on the zen bench just the other side of the scalloped boxwood hedge.
It is not just flowers that cause a spontaneous cheer to erupt as Spring returns in full force. Leaves of the most precious shade of green, so longed for during a colorless winter epitomize gladness. Shown above is the mostly bare but soon to be covered stems of Hydrangea paniculata ‘Grandiflora’, pruned and trained as a standard.
But let there be no mistake, one thing more exciting, more eye popping, more blood stirring than all the wonderment going on in the garden at present is the sighting, and capturing with the camera of the season’s first swallowtail.
The species Tulipa vvedenskyi ‘Tangerine Beauty’ bears witness that this is a current photo, not a summertime slip-in being passed off. The white Phlox subulata has attracted this same type of butterfly, the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail in previous years, but not as early as this.
There had been a couple of butterfly sightings previously this year, on the warmer top of the rollercoaster days, a large black one and what appeared to be a Question Mark, but there was no camera at hand and the moment had to be recorded in the cerebral folds rather than in pixels. Arriving home from a recent weekend at the beach, perusing the garden before the sun set and spotting the flying flower, pathway gravel flew as the flip flop clad feet ran for the camera. The temperture was dropping and the creature was sluggishly feasting on Phlox nectar, or there would have been no images to share of the momentous occasion. It is a good beginning, and welcome.