Sunday, April 7, 2013

Daffodils are a sign of Spring by Barbara Edwards

 In fifth grade, the teacher insisted we memorize a poem every week. At the time I thought Mrs. Robinson was very demanding, but she had the right idea. All these years later I remember what became one of my favorite poems.

          I WANDERED lonely as a cloud
          That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
          When all at once I saw a crowd,
          A host, of golden daffodils;
          Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
          Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

          Continuous as the stars that shine
          And twinkle on the milky way,
          They stretched in never-ending line
          Along the margin of a bay:                                  10
          Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
          Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

          The waves beside them danced; but they
          Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
          A poet could not but be gay,
          In such a jocund company:
          I gazed--and gazed--but little thought
          What wealth the show to me had brought:

          For oft, when on my couch I lie
          In vacant or in pensive mood,                               20
          They flash upon that inward eye
          Which is the bliss of solitude;
          And then my heart with pleasure fills,
          And dances with the daffodils.
                                      Wordsworth       1804.

Symbolizing rebirth and new beginnings, the daffodil, or narcissus, as it is also called, is virtually synonymous with spring. It is also the March flower.

Daffodils are popular in New England  and there are naturalized plantings along field-stone walls, in highway buffers, and yards everywhere.
I’ve wanted to plant them for years, but we’re usually still in Florida when they bloom so my husband wasn’t encouraging.
Finally, three years ago, I decided what the heck. We won’t always be traveling and the bulbs will only multiply.
I went to the store and bought four bags of bulbs. There is a weird tool that looks like an apple corer to plant the bulbs.  I found it difficult to use and after three bulbs got a shovel. I had over two hundred bulbs to plant. (I tend to go overboard.) I actually dug a trench fourteen inches wide and six inches deep. It stretched across the garden in front of the porch.
I missed them when we returned in the end of April, but this year we’ll be home in time because of all the snow. I'm taking lots of photos and
I’m looking forward to them.

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Margo Hoornstra said...

Spring should be coming, right? The nice thing about Daffodils, and we have loads too, is once you plant them they keep coming up year after year. Something to look forward to!

Barbara Edwards said...

this year I'm going to plant tulips alongside the daffodils. I think by the time we stop traveling they'll cover the ground.

Jannine Gallant said...

Sounds very pretty, Barbara. I planted daffodils about 15 years ago and then ignored them for - 15 years. FYI, they stopped blooming after about 10, so apparently some attention is required. LOL

Barbara Edwards said...

Hi Jannine,
They do need to be separated if they get crowded, although I've seen patches that are decades old.