Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Lack of Blooms A Sign of a Late Spring

It has been a nasty winter. It has been long and drawn out too. Its effects are at high elevations and here in the valleys too. Even I am beginning to look for the colors of spring.

Sometime over the winter, I wandered into Woodland and followed the signs to the Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens. On a cold wet, February day, I said “self, I will return to see the blooming lilacs“.

On a recent Sunday, my boys and I drove to Vancouver on an unrelated adventure, but part of the bargain struck entitled me a chance to stop at the Woodland Tulip Festival and photograph a little spring color. Chief among my curiosities was the Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens.

Hulda Klager was 13 when she purchased a farm. Around 1903, she began experimenting with cross breeding apples. By 1910, she was working with lilacs in much the same fashion. She hand pollinated a number of cross-breeds and developed unique refinements in lilacs. In 1948, the gardens were nearly destroyed by a flood of the Columbia River, but people that had purchased some of her most unique samples returned them so that the demonstration garden would continue. Currently, the garden covers 4.5 acres and the house has been turned into a museum.

Getting to the gardens is fairly easy for there is fairly consistent signage from Interstate 5. An admission price of $2.00 is required at the front gate.

So, in late-April, we fully expected to see scenes like the colorful photos on the website. But as we continue to have frosts and just 24 hours earlier, experienced a late-season snowfall, flowers of just about every kind were reluctant to bloom; and frankly could you blame them? I walked the garden grounds and only marveled at the potential.

The grounds of the Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens showed potential, but little color.

We also stopped at the center of the Woodland Tulip Festival and walked through some of the tulips that were on display (albeit grudgingly I am sure). We also listened to a band playing music as exhibitors broke down their displays on the last afternoon of the celebration. My son and I couldn’t help purchasing a few tulips of our own to give some additional color to our own expanding flower garden that itself is hesitant to show its colors.

Regardless, spring will come. It has fooled those that schedule the flower blooms and related celebrations, but predictions for a gradual warming trend between now and July 15th, simply can’t be ignored .


Anonymous said...

you all suck

Gregg P said...

Well, thank you for your well planned expression. Do come back by again some time, but be sure to bring your brain!

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