Of pasque flowers and shooting stars

Their little faces lifting toward the sun and I think of my friend Marion and how much she would enjoy seeing the Pasque flowers (Pulsatilla vulgaris), at left, as they open. I hold that thought close, willing her to survive this stroke. At 83, she would say she’s lived a wonderful life, but I can’t quite bear the thought of her steady and encouraging presence being silenced in my life.

I let my thoughts move about the garden and look closely at the Scillas blooming with happy abandon. Their intense blue colours inspire me to pull out my paints. With the gentle wind of this morning, the flowers seem to be dancing and enjoying their brief stay in my garden.

New liverlily blooms are open today. Crouching over what is becoming a patch of them, I notice that my lone Shooting Star (Dodecatheon meadis), at right, has emerged – another adorable plant that will bloom and then disappear as the summer progresses.

These spring-blooming and summer-vanishing plants, glorious for their brief spell in the garden, remind me that this is how I want to live my life … in the moment savouring my life just as it is.

When I discovered the Shooting Star this morning, a memory flitted through my mind of my San Diego trip. Sitting on the balcony of my friend’s place enjoying sometimes lively, sometimes quieter and more contemplative conversations, I hoped for a shooting star streaking across the night sky as they often do there.

And how can they not bring a grin to my face, the Striped Squills (Puschkinia scilloides var libanotica)? They have a cheeky quality to them, as if they are mischievously plotting while I’m not looking. Their nodding white and blue-striped blooms bring more cheer alongside and in the midst of the Scilla. There is something inspiring about the way they increase year-upon-year with little work on my part.

Besides having a definite thing for flowers in blue, mauve and purple shades, I also love plant shoots in this particular pinkish-red shade. These shoots, at right, are of the summer-blooming Burnet (Sanguisorba officinalis). It is such a majestic plant in the garden, subtly complementing my beloved Meadowrues. Long stems of flowers, in a deep-maroon colour, sway softly in a gentle mid-summer’s breeze and resemble, to my mind, mini-bottlebrushes.

As I move the day, Marion will be much in my mind as I send many healing thoughts her way …

13 thoughts on “Of pasque flowers and shooting stars

  1. What a dear gentle healing soul you have, Kate. I lend my thoughts and flowers to Marion’s healing too. jodi

  2. Oh, Kate. Your words flow like nothing else. So heartfelt. There is something about blue flowers that I admire also.I wish for Marion to see the blue, too…I love your blog and your words. Just wonderful!

  3. lots of my plants have memorys, a cutting from here and a plant from there, and I am quite unable at the moment to lift the very last leek, my friend Billy gave me half a tray last year. and he died suddenly at christmas.

  4. Kate, I hope your friend, Marion will be ok. I will hold healing thoughts for her.Your post was beautiful today…and so were the photos. xoxo

  5. Thanks to all of you for your good thoughts and kind words … I agree, Claire, that plants do bring us memories of people who are dear to us.

  6. I wish your friend well, Kate. Your posts always make me think, and the way you appreciate all the details in nature really inspires me.

  7. I’m so sorry about your friend Marion — I hope she recovers soon. The blue Scillas took my breath away — they are stunning. And I really was touched when you wrote “These spring-blooming and summer-vanishing plants, glorious for their brief spell in the garden, remind me that this is how I want to live my life … in the moment savouring my life just as it is.” So beautifully said — thank you!

  8. Sandy & Clare – I love visiting both of your blogs because they are so cheering. Your pictures are always beautiful and leave me feeling a sense of peace.

  9. Oh, I have so many plants that remind me of people. But I don’t write about them nearly so beautifully as you do. I can’t decide what color flower I like the best. Or even what flower is my favorite, any more. I’m with my mother here, who, when asked what her favorite flower is, responds, “Whichever one I am looking at.”

  10. I beg to differ, HMHands! You write wonderfully about your plants and every other subject that I have read of yours. Plus, you take great pictures… It was a recent post of yours about mildewed clothing that sent me back into memory land.

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