Wednesday, February 22, 2012

February 22, 2012 -- Pickwick crocus

Is there anything prettier or more welcome than a crocus? The minute I saw my crocuses peeking out from under the snow, I couldn't wait to display them on the windowsill. They make remarkably wonderful cut flowers (assuming you're satisfied with small things and don't need your cut flowers to be as long-lasting as carnations). This is my absolute favorite crocus, Pickwick, which has gorgeous striped petals and orange stamens.

Even as I picked it, I knew what "vase" I wanted to put my crocus in: a glass inkwell that was once my mother's. I put crocus flowers in it every year, but, alas, it has been missing for months. I keep expecting it to turn up, but it doesn't. So, after mourning my lost inkwell for the fifty-eleventh time, I went trolling for something else and found a glass glass vase Robert Llewellyn had given me. I had admired it at his house, where he used it to hold plant specimens, and he gave to me (because it had not much more value to him than any other water-holding vessel) with what seemed like perfect pleasure. Well, now I think it's better than my mother's inkwell for crocuses! Bob says it came from Monticello.

The other things in Bob's vase (combined with the Pickwick crocuses) are some daffodil and sweet box (Sarcocca hookeriana) foliage. The latter is blooming right now and making the garden swooningly fragrant.

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