The Surprise of Bulbs

One of the pleasures of growing bulbs is the feeling of surprise when they come up and bloom in places you forgot about. It’s a small miracle when you plant this little round thing that looks like an onion in the fall, all winter it lies dormant, then by some unseen signal, it begins to grow when it seems like the ground is too cold to support growth. But grow they do. The earliest bulbs grow and bloom before most other plants are even showing a hint of life. They continue to do this year after year. How great is that?

Daffodils & Tulips

Daffodils & Tulips

Another wonderful thing about bulbs is when you see one blooming in the unlikeliest of places. A couple of weeks ago, there was a single daffodil growing and blooming right through the asphalt of a driveway. That is perseverance!

I also love it when there is a single tulip or daffodil along the side of the road. I wonder how it got there. Was it dropped from a passing car or truck? Was it in a pot and thrown away? How did it manage to establish itself there and thrive? Roadsides are not a gentle place to grow.

I’ve seen daffodils blooming out of the sides of river banks and imagine a flood in the past that washed the bulb from its home and eventually the water left it on the bank to grow and flower for all who pass.

Then there are the bulbs that talk to me of history. They are growing in wooded, weed-filled lots. It makes me wonder about the house that used to be there and the person who lovingly planted that bulb. How long had it been growing? Why is the house gone now? There are stories there that beg for attention.

Flowering bulbs make me smile in delight no matter where they show up.