Slow painting

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Looking into the heart of Spring

Two weeks early, my magnolia stellata is in bloom. Soft, velvet-covered buds one day, and then a froth of white, all of a sudden. My unscientific, highly personal yardstick for its early or late blooming is 'Turin time'. In 2006 we were in Turin from the 11th to the 18th of April. The magnolia was just coming into flower when we left, and when we returned it was over. Turin was worth missing its flowering for, but still, I remember the pang of disappointment at arriving home and realising that it would be another year before I would see my own tree in bloom. (And Turin has been much on my mind recently as I plan another, static blog about that experience. Coming shortly, probably to Wordpress.) The essence of Spring in Scotland is a counterpoint of blossom with echoes of Winter. This is the north, after all. Sunlit blooms against a background of slate-dark sky would be what I would long for if I were ever exiled to the South. And how can this be? Plum blossom, which my mental calendar places firmly in late April. Admittedly my little tree is planted against a high south-facing wall. It's an espalier that got away, going its own sweet way despite my attempts at pruning and training. I am counting the plums we might have this year. Last year we achieved three, and I am praying the gardener's prayer that frost won't smite the fragile blossom even in this precocious Spring.

11 comments:

Ali said...

Oh plums - you lucky thing. I hope you get tons!

Mark Willis said...

Wonderful photos, Linda. I'm having the same thoughts about my own fruit trees. Are they blossoming too early??? With a tree it's not like growing veg - you can't re-sow if something fails. You have to wait a whole year for the next opportunity.
I hope my Plum tree will produce as many flowers / fruit as yours. I only had TWO plums from it last year, so I have been to extra lengths to nurture it this time.

dancingbeastie said...

Plum blossom??!? [picks jaw off floor] You really are in the tropics! Isn't it beautiful, like the design on a kimono.

Your magnolia is heavenly. All white and windblown, a burst feather pillow.

ONG said...

Stunning photos and a nice change of pace from our dreary rainy morning. I need to find a way to add a magnolia somewhere next year.

Green Lane Allotments said...

Your plum blossom is out at the same time as ours and I too am hoping that the frost misses it.

Fay McKenzie said...

Oh I have serious spring envy!!!!

Enjoy how beautiful they all are - thankfully I can enjoy yours x

Peggy said...

The magnolia is absolutely beautiful I can imagine your disappointment at missing the last flowering.I have noticed lots of them down here too this year all ready to burst into bloom.

Aina said...

Amazing. So nice to see that the fruit trees bloom. I look so forward to spring, sun and heat. And the flowers start to sprout and grow. We still have a litle snow here, but it will be gone by the end of this week. Have a wonderful spring!

clairz said...

The blossoms against the slate-dark sky remind me of those times when there is a spot of sunlight against the background of a coming storm.

Beautiful. Especially when contrasted against that plastic-covered scene in the post below.

VP said...

A beautiful heart!

Far Side of Fifty said...

I came over from Larrys to see your Magnolia..it is beautiful:)