It’s that first perfect spring day that happened to fall on a weekend and we’re all outside trying to get caught up. Our failings are so incredibly evident, but beside them, amongst them, beautiful little gems throughout the garden are calling out, hoping for some of the attention they deserve. Do we see them or are we mostly just going from one job to the next?

Pulmonaria ‘Diana Clare’ like a jewel in the low, late winter light.

Veronica ‘Georgia Blue,’ giving ‘Diana Clare’ a run for her money. I should have taken time to remove all the dead leaves and stems for these photos, but, honestly, are these plants not pretty enough to overcome a little leaf litter? All the brown around them just enables them to shine that much brighter. 

But, hey, know what? It’s still March. It might feel like spring but it’s still freaking winter! And winter is hard. It’s hard on plants and it’s hard on us and we were right to take some of it off. It’s healthy to stress about something else for a while. And so maybe we were caught off guard and might now be a wee bit behind. Nothing wrong with that. Totally okay. And that’s the grace I’d give any of my gardening friends if I saw their gardens looking like mine and them feeling like I do. So why not also give a little of that grace to myself? And you to yourself? What isn’t okay is to miss out on the very first sparkling gifts a brand new gardening season is already sharing with us. There can be no grace for that. 

Two easy, little beauties that could escape notice if you’re lost in all your efforts of the moment. Good old grape hyacinth and Chionadoxa.

So go outside and leave the tools behind. Do not miss the first round of daffodils because your eyes could only find the twigs, stems, and spent leaves strewn about their beds. Do not overlook the rockcress while on search and destroy missions against winter cress. Do not spend a gorgeous day in the basement sowing seeds because you’re already late. Nope. Go out and feel the sun. Breath the air. And witness the beauty that already is. There are things you’ve done right out there. Enjoy them. Sure, they were–in years past–probably done late, in haste, and at the expense of an enjoyable garden experience, but we can’t keep banking gardening joy for some far off time. Spend some of it today. 

Although I don’t remember it, some years ago I must have tossed some trout lily seeds in one of the back gardens. Brilliant move. All these years later, our first flower.

Two views of the same flower. Every year I transplant some of the seedling hellebores huddled beneath mother plants. It takes a minimum of three years for them to bloom. So far, all of them are good. This one better than most. Veronica ‘Georgia Blue’ in the background. 

Other seedling hellebores. Again, they’re all good. Oh, and yes, all these photos were taken today and I’m writing this now while I should be outside. As always, do as I say, not as I do. Happy gardening!