First the Blossoms, then the Leaves – Queen Magnolia Makes up for Lost Time

It is Holy Week and by now it should be the dogwoods that ought to be blooming with their cruciform flowers, each petal pierced with red. It has been a strange spring, though. As the cold hung on and on, the magnolia blossoms stayed hunkered in their fuzzy husks, only finally coming out several weeks ago during a spate of warm days, fully one month late, looking a little bedraggled and forlorn. Then they miraculously unfurled, stood full, and finally flopped down, pleased with the fullness of their petals. And then another cold, cold rain and strong westerly wind and they were gone, quilting the lawn with the help of the false violets like a delicate grave blanket. It is only this last death of sorts, though, which makes way for the next resurrection, as the green, stubby buds beneath the stem where the flowers had been unfurl in their turn, and begin their journey to broad, leafy maturity, to making a green, shading canopy in the summer and one of glorious yellow in autumn.

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