Crocus – Heralds of Spring
Holy Moly, I was out in the garden center this afternoon and it was almost 63 degrees. What the heck. And they are calling for 12 inches of snow tomorrow. Crazy season and weather to say the least. As I was strolling through the beds my eyes kept looking down for a small shoot because there is one thing you can count on and it won’t be long until they start peeping out of the cold, winter’s earth seeking the warmth of the sun.
When the crocuses bloom, spring is here. Gardeners know this in their hearts, even though the calendar may say otherwise. There is something about this beguiling springtime flower that sets the emotions astir and reassures those who have been waiting through the long winter that the new season has arrived. This kind of response is especially noteworthy when the crocus brave late winter snow and poke through the white blanket anyway.
Two important things to remember about growing crocus anywhere: The first year is usually glorious with bloom, because the corm has all the food supply and nutrients needed to nourish, push up and support the flower that is formed. For the future, however, this nutrient supply must be provided either by fertilizer applications in the late fall and again in quite early spring, as the snow melts. Also, the foliage must remain to support the corm underneath the ground. The leaves will eventually yellow and die down, and then they can be pulled away or allowed to wither naturally. If the crocus corms have been naturalized in the lawn, be careful to cut around this area until the foliage matures.
The crocus foliage is stiff and grasslike with white stripes. The flowers, with their six shiny petals, are often described as having the shape of a chalice or a vase. Three or more crocus flowers are rewarding to see, but a mass display of hundreds of them in bloom is an inspiration for the poets.
and with that being said; here’s a bit of warmth for any gardener’s heart on a winter’s day
HERALDS OF SPRING – by Anne E. Kachline
Crocus herald of the spring
What glad tidings do you bring
Glorious wonder welcome sight
Your joyous brilliant blossoms bright
You raise your head in days so drear
To brave the cold wind’s blast each year
Undaunted by the snow and frost
A sign of hope when all seems lost
First fragrant flower we behold
Adorned in purple white and gold
Emblems of authority
Robes of majestic purity
In victorious triumph bursting forth
From seeds long buried in the earth
Regal crocus herald of spring
Nature’s messenger of resurrection
through heaven’s risen King
Planted in large massings and frequent bouquets, spring bulbs are cheerful and charming additions to your garden. The earliest blooming bulbs – Snowdrops, Chionodoxa (Glory-of-the-Snow), Scilla, and Crocus – herald the end of winter and the beginning of spring. These small and delicate blooms are the perfect accompaniment for any garden transitioning from winter into spring and onto summer. Not only are they suitable for edging along walkways and planting beds, but they can also be planted into somewhat shadier locations since they bloom before trees leaf out and their fine-texture leaves don’t become intrusive as they fade and mid and late-spring bulbs take their place.
Following the site of Snowdrops and other early bloomers, you can expect to see Daffodils, Tulips, Hyacinths, and Alliums gracing your gardens. These flowers make bold statements with their bright colors and larger sizes, making them ideal for back borders where smaller bulbs are harder to notice. Their vibrant colors aside, Daffodils are our most popular species of bulbs due to their ability to naturalize in an area and last for many years, as well as being an excellent selection for woodland edge plantings. With so many varieties to choose from, your garden can be awash with color for months.
Shop Goffle Brook Farms for all your spring flowering bulb fertilizer and soil amendment needs. We have a diverse and large selection of “premium” garden products at the garden center – farmer’s market. Stop in and see for yourself what Bergen County already knows.