First there was little green and mostly mulch. Then daffodils, snowdrops, snowflakes, hellebores, crocuses and hyacinths colored the garden. Trees leafed out and bloomed magnificently, while other spring bloomers picked up the pace. Columbines unfolded their leaves, shot up their flower spikes and bloomed with numerous flowers on each stem. Then the first clematis raced up its trellis and bloomed. Soon others followed. I walk the garden each morning and evening, marveling at new greenery at every step. Some hostas shoot out of the ground. They weren’t there in the morning, but the next day they are up and out. Others, a bit more shaded, take their time. A little nose appears; a few more noses follow, unfolding slowly, but then, low and behold, another hosta has arrived in its full splendor.
Temperatures are inching up, but they are not yet warm enough for breakfast in the gazebo before going off to work. There is no need for me yet to turn on the AC although I have heard the hum from AC units at neighboring homes on a couple of days. On a warmer day I open the windows and close the curtains; by evening the cool air outside brings the indoor temperature down again. We have barely cracked 70 degrees indoors, which is just comfortable enough for me to wear short sleeved shirts. Outdoors I manage to work up a sweat at times, only to sit down in the shade and be perfectly comfortable. Life is good in spring.
The koi have also noticed the change in seasons and have been busy spawning. By now all eight of them are big enough to get in on the act and there has been a lot of splashing around the edges of the pond. The few water lily leaves which have come up by now are promptly torn to ribbons and the spawning must have increased their appetite for greenery as well as they tear chunks off the leaves. The day after each spawning the fish eagerly look for and eat the eggs attached to the sides of the pond. This is another year I don’t have to worry about getting lots of baby fish, hiding between water lilies and other submerged plants and that suits me just fine. The three baby koi purchased in 2010 have matured into nearly two feet long fish; two of their offspring at two years old have also attained a nice size and three others purchased within the last two years are growing too. For now I have more than enough fish for my 1200 gallon pond and with any luck all of them will make the move next year to a bigger pond when we relocate to Pennsylvania, but that will be a whole new chapter in my gardening adventures….