Not really a Garden bloggers’ bloom day …meadowrues in snow

So a few days ago, I was certain that spring had arrived and that we had seen the last of the snow. A tad optimistic, I’d say! Last evening, a blizzard passed through and left about 10 cm. of snow. It must have been my friend Kerry who brought it with her from Calgary!

When I looked out my kitchen window this morning, I was taken with the snow twinkling off the meadowrue stalks. During our long winter months, I have always loved seeing seedpods poking up through the snow. It is as if they serve as a reminder that the garden is still there, buried as it is under a metre of snow.

No doubt my eyes fastened on this particular meadowrue (Thalictrum rochebruneanum pictured here) because of my reading last night.

If you have never encountered the garden writings of Louise Beebe Wilder (d. 1938), then it is well worth a trip to the library or bookstore to discover her. The three-volume collection of Wilder, an American gardener and essayist from the 1930s, was re-published in 1996.

The volume I read last night, What happens in my garden, is made up of numerous conversational chapters detailing particular plants.

Since falling under the spell of meadowrues many years ago, I was drawn to Wilder’s chapter speaking of their ‘feathery grace’. How better to describe them? I have spent more than a few hours admiring them for they truly are “like mist in the distance.” And, as Wilder comments:

It is the mission, or perhaps we should say the destiny, of certain plants, as it is of certain persons, to make the world in which they live a pleasanter and more gracious place, not by means of conspicuous achievements or outstanding personality, but by means of more subtle, less dramatic attributes.

What is particularly appealing about meadowrues, besides their ethereal beauty, is the ease with which they grow. As long as they are planted in rich, well-drained soil and are not subjected to intense heat and sunlight, they require little in the way of tending, beyond staking (required here because of prairie winds).

I love meadowrues for their beautiful columbine-like foliage and for their height – they can grow to one or two metres in height, depending on the species, when in bloom. The mauve-flowering meadowrues are my favourite … not surprisingly.

And while I sit here writing this in the bright sunshine and nibbling on frozen blueberries, I am distracted by drifts of snow tumbling off the roof … by the weekend, the snow should be a distant memory. Let’s hope.

9 thoughts on “Not really a Garden bloggers’ bloom day …meadowrues in snow

  1. Carol says:

    For some reason I can’t get your picture to display, but I like how you have described the meadow rue. I can “see” it without a picture!

  2. Verena says:

    Hi Kate,I feel with you – now all this snow again is really horrible! And unfortunatly bad weather should come to Austria too: snow and 3-5 degrees celsius. Hopefully it won´t last to long, our second winter :-)!Greetings, Verena

  3. Abby Creek Art says:

    We’re so tired of snow here in Colorado this winter! I know we’ll be getting a least one early spring storm like you had…but at least the birds are starting to sing and the lilacs are budding.:)

  4. Sandy says:

    Hello Kate,So glad you stopped by my blog. This is my first visit to a blog from Saskatchewan. And, what a nice blog it is. I will have to look up Louise Beebe Wilder’s work.We are due to get what I hope is our last winter storm this weekend. This past week, we had finally gotten down to bare ground in the yard!

  5. Salix Tree says:

    Love your blog, it’s very poetic. Thanks for visiting my blog!I tried growing seeds of Thalictrum a few years back, and the tiny plants never made it out of the pot, no idea why they died. I must give them another try some day. They are most beautiful flowers

  6. Gotta Garden says:

    I can’t believe I don’t have any!! Your writing is so inspiring, I will have to check them out! You are going to add to my reading pile (a good thing!)…

  7. Crafty Gardener ... says:

    Your snow moved into our area of Quinte West, Ontario on Friday night and Saturday. I did have new growth peeking through the ground but now it is back under that blanket of white snow. I’ll add a link to my blog so I can come back and visit often.

  8. Molly says:

    I’m hopelessly addicted to thalictrum, myself. Everything from the tiny natives to my gigantic thalictrum ‘Elin’.

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