Flowers in the spring garden

As we come out of a long and cold winter, there are some joyous moments in seeing that the snowdrops, which seemed to be very short and underdeveloped last week, have now become lovely and long stemmed. Together with them the leaves of the bearded irises are now beginning to show, and the combination of green lance-like leaves and nodding white flowers is really pretty.

A little further in the garden is the cyclaminum coum, which carpets the ground over time with fantastic pink petals and rounded dark green leaves. This reminds me of the wooded drive up to my family home in Tuscany, with a special cyclamen covered verge of the road as a spot to cherish in spring. Even in the rain and wet of an English winter day it is a really cheery sight in what is described in many magazines and blog posts as the most dull week in February...(second week- that is).

And finally a strange flower, but innocent, sweet and elegant, as seen in Southampton this week. A white hellebore, no leaves, but in full bloom.

It could be partnered with some low growing, carpeting plants, miniature cistus soucii, or grasses, from which it would emerge with more presence, however, it is welcome in any form....

Finally, a link to a very nice blog post by Sarah Raven on putting together flower collections for Valentine's Day... always tricky, but I agree in trying to avoid the hothoused red roses....

And here is the blog link to this story...