Our daffodils are mostly finished; now comes the freesia time. Oh, they smell heavenly. And the pink jasmine has opened its stars all over the garden wall.
The butterfly garden is rebounding, now that the neighbor’s pepper trees have been hacked back to stubs. The tiny lilac and the young manzanita bush are in bloom, and the tree mallow is all pink blossoms and bees. The nasturtiums have sprung up from last year’s seeds, but the flowers seldom last long: Rilla and Huck keep eating them all.
I planted dahlias last fall, a gift from a close friend, but they haven’t yet made an appearance aboveground. Oh, but there’s a lone iris, slender leaves, rich purple-blue flower, that streak of gold down the middle. I carried irises in my wedding bouquet, so they always make me think of us.
The milkweed is just beginning to open, and all the roadsides are thick with gazanias and grape-soda lupine. Our crows are building a nest in the schoolyard fig tree just beyond our back fence. When I water the lettuces, tiny alligator lizards dart out from under the spray, indignant every time. They run up the wall and freeze in plain sight.
The front-yard tulips, those crazy gold-and-scarlet marvels, are about to drop their petals. Last week they were stunners, turning the head of every passerby. This week they’re haggard and overbright, still commanding attention in their garish decline, the Norma Desmonds of the garden.