Reminders Of Home


This time of year our neighbourhood is ablaze with color. Azaleas are in bloom almost everywhere you look.


One is left in no doubt that winter is behind us.


For me, however, the sight of bluebells in our garden is a favourite indicator of how the seasons are moving along. They remind me of home.


In Britain, it is common to see woodland with bluebells growing abundantly; the ground transformed for a week or two to a sea of blue. I have fond memories of walking through such woods as a child, but have never seen anything similar in the US. In fact, I wasn’t even aware that the same type of bluebell grows here.

So, when I first saw a few British-looking bluebells growing by a sidewalk in our neighbourhood, I was intrigued. A quick search online revealed that the variety of bluebell that is abundant in Britain also grows here.

Soon I was in possession of 8 packets of bluebell seeds, and I scattered them amongst the ivy on our little hill. The following Spring I checked frequently for the first signs of growth — but saw nothing. I told myself that maybe the flowering season is later here and kept checking. Come June, I gave up looking.

Being someone that doesn’t give up easily on an idea, I came up with a Plan B. I purchased bulbs the following Autumn. Planting the bulbs was much harder than I imagined. Getting the trowel through the mesh of ivy and vinca that had developed over many years was not easy. I bought a special tool to bore holes that looked like a giant drill. The vines quickly wound around as I turned it. Back to the trowel.

My perseverance paid off. The following Spring the bluebells bloomed just as I had pictured.


Dan and I enjoyed them so much that we decided to plant a much larger swath amongst the ivy and pachysandra at the side of the house. This time we had a landscaping company plant the bulbs. The expanse of bluebells was outstanding.


In order to build new foundations for the house extension, a lot of earth had to be moved, and removed.


So, this year we had to come to terms with losing many of the bluebells.


I like to think that some of the bulbs that were carted away had an opportunity to bloom in a new location, and that someone enjoyed their beauty, and wondered how the bluebells got there.

live. enjoy. repeat.

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