Spring


Quotations for Gardeners, Walkers, and Lovers of the Green Way
Poems, Folklore, Myths, Customs, Holidays, Traditions, Lore, Quotes, Sayings
Celebrations, Gardening Chores, Poetry, Quips, Links, Reading, Weather 

Compiled by Karen and Mike Garofalo
Green Way Research,  Red Bluff, California

Spring     March     April     May     June     Summer     Months    

Walking     Flowers     Trees     Blog     Gardening     Home

 


 

 

Springtime

April, May, June
Poetry, Quotations, Sayings, Facts, Wisdom, Quips, Aphorisms, Lore

 

"The wood is decked in light green leaf.
The swallow twitters in delight.
The lonely vine sheds joyous tears
Of interwoven dew and light.

Spring weaves a gown of green to clad
The mountain height and wide-spread field.
O when wilt thou, my native land,
In all thy glory stand revealed?"
-  Ilia Chavchavadze, Spring

 

"Come, gentle Spring!  Ethereal Mildness!  Come."
-  James Thomson 

 

"When April scatters charms of primrose gold
Among the copper leaves in thickets old,
And singing skylarks from the meadows rise,
To twinkle like black stars in sunny skies;

When I can hear the small woodpecker ring
Time on a tree for all the birds that sing;
And hear the pleasant cuckoo, loud and long --
The simple bird that thinks two notes a song."
-  William Henry Davies, April's Charms 

 

"Spring comes: the flowers learn their colored shapes."
-  Maria Konopnicka

 

"How many million Aprils came
before I ever knew
how white a cherry bough could be,
a bed of squills, how blue
And many a dancing April
when life is done with me,
will lift the blue flame of the flower
and the white flame of the tree
Oh burn me with your beauty then,
oh hurt me tree and flower,
lest in the end death try to take
even this glistening hour..."
Sara Teasdale, Blue Squills, 1920 

 

"In April, we cannot see sunflowers in France, so we might say the sunflowers do not exist. But the local farmers have already planted thousands of seeds, and when they look at the bare hills, they may be able to see the sunflowers already. The sunflowers are there. They lack only the conditions of sun, heat, rain and July. Just because we cannot see them does not mean that they do not exist."
-  Thich Nhat Hanh 

 

"What is one to say about June, the time of perfect young summer, the fulfillment of the promise of the earlier months, and with as yet no sign to remind one that its fresh young beauty will ever fade."
-  Gertrude Jekyll, On Gardening 

 

"Come, fill the Cup, and in the Fire of Spring
The Winter Garment of Repentance fling:
The Bird of Time has but a little way
To fly--and Lo! the Bird is on the Wing."
-  Omar Khayyám  

 

"Hark, I hear a robin calling!
List, the wind is from the south!
And the orchard-bloom is falling
Sweet as kisses on the mouth.

In the dreamy vale of beeches
Fair and faint is woven mist,
And the river's orient reaches
Are the palest amethyst.

Every limpid brook is singing
Of the lure of April days;
Every piney glen is ringing
With the maddest roundelays.

Come and let us seek together
Springtime lore of daffodils,
Giving to the golden weather
Greeting on the sun-warm hills."
-  Lucy Maud Montgomery, Spring Song 

 

"An altered look about the hills;
A Tyrian light the village fills;
A wider sunrise in the dawn;
A deeper twilight on the lawn;
A print of a vermilion foot;
A purple finger on the slope;
A flippant fly upon the pane;
A spider at his trade again;
An added strut in chanticleer;
A flower expected everywhere ..."
-  Emily Dickinson, Nature: April

 

"I gazed upon the glorious sky
And the green mountains round,
And thought that when I came to lie
At rest within the ground,
'Twere pleasant, that in flowery June
When brooks send up a cheerful tune,
And groves a joyous sound,
The sexton's hand, my grave to make,
The rich, green mountain-turf should break."
-  William Cullen Bryant, June 

 

"The year's at the spring,
And day's at the morn;
Morning's at seven;
The hill-side's dew-pearled;
The lark's on the wing;
The snail's on the thorn;
God's in his Heaven—
All's right with the world!"
-  Robert Browning, The Year's at the Spring 

 

"It is the month of June,
The month of leaves and roses,
When pleasant sights salute the eyes
And pleasant scents the noses."
-  Nathaniel Parker Willis, The Month of June

 

Perennials for Every Purpose: Choose the Right Plants for Your Conditions, Your Garden, and Your Taste by Larry Hodgson
Grasses: Versatile Partners for Uncommon Garden Design Nancy J. Ondra
Designer Plant Combinations: 105 Stunning Gardens Using Six Plants or Fewer by Scott Calhoun
The Perennial Care Manual: A Plant-by-Plant Guide: What to Do and When to Do It by Nancy J. Ondra
Perennial Combinations: Stunning Combinations That Make Your Garden Look Fantastic Right from the Start by C. Colston Burrell
Perennials for Every Purpose: Choose the Right Plants for Your Conditions, Your Garden, and Your Taste by Larry Hodgson 

 

"Spring makes its own statement, so loud and clear that the gardener seems to be only one of the instruments, not the composer."
-  Geoffrey B. Charlesworth 

 

"When the April wind wakes the call for the soil, I hold the plough as my only hold upon the earth, and, as I follow through the fresh and fragrant furrow, I am planted with every foot-step, growing, budding, blooming into a spirit of spring."
-  Dallas Lore Sharp 

 

"After her came jolly June, arrayed
All in green leaves, as he a player were;
Yet in his time he wrought as well as played,
That by his plough-irons mote right well appear.
Upon a crab he rode, that did him bear,
With crooked crawling steps, an uncouth pace,
And backward rode, as bargemen wont to fare,
Bending their force contrary to their face;
Like that ungracious crew which feigns demurest grace."
-  Edmund Spenser  

 

"Here the white-ray'd anemone is born,
Wood-sorrel, and the varnish'd buttercup;
And primrose in its purfled green swathed up,
Pallid and sweet round every budding thorn,
Gray ash, and beech with rusty leaves outworn.
Here, too the darting linnet hath her nest
In the blue-lustred holly, never shorn,
Whose partner cheers her little brooding breast,
Piping from some near bough. O simple song!
O cistern deep of that harmonious rillet,
And these fair juicy stems that climb and throng
The vernal world, and unexhausted seas
Of flowing life, and soul that asks to fill it,
Each and all of these,--and more, and more than these!"
-  William Allingham, In a Spring Grove

 

"There is no season such delight can bring,
As summer, autumn, winter and the spring."
-  William Browne, Variety, 1630  

 

"From you have I been absent in the spring,
When proud-pied April dress'd in all his trim
Hath put a spirit of youth in every thing,
That heavy Saturn laugh'd and leap'd with him.
Yet nor the lays of birds nor the sweet smell
Of different flowers in odour and in hue
Could make me any summer's story tell,
Or from their proud lap pluck them where they grew;
Nor did I wonder at the lily's white,
Nor praise the deep vermilion in the rose;
They were but sweet, but figures of delight,
Drawn after you, you pattern of all those.
Yet seem'd it winter still, and, you away,
As with your shadow I with these did play."
-  William Shakespeare, Sonnet 98  

 

"The young May moon is beaming, love.
The glow-worm's lamp is gleaming, love.
How sweet to rove,
Through Morna's grove,
When the drowsy world is dreaming, love!
Then awake! -- the heavens look bright, my dear,
'Tis never too late for delight, my dear,
And the best of all ways
To lengthen our days
Is to steal a few hours from the night, my dear!"
-  Thomas Moore, The Young May Moon 

 

"It's May! It's May! 
The lusty month of May!
Those dreary vows that ev'ryone makes, 
Ev'ryone breaks. 
Ev'ryone makes divine mistakes! 
The lusty month of May!"
-  Lerner and Lowe 

 

"It is dry, hazy June weather.  We are more of the earth, farther from heaven these days."
-  Henry David Thoreau

 

"What is now the foliage moving?
Air is still, and hush'd the breeze,
Sultriness, this fullness loving,
Through the thicket, from the trees.
Now the eye at once gleams brightly,
See! the infant band with mirth
Moves and dances nimbly, lightly,
As the morning gave it birth,
Flutt'ring two and two o'er earth."
-  Goethe 

 

"No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow."
-  Proverb from Guinea

 

"The first day of spring is one thing, and the first spring day is another.  The difference between them is sometimes as great as a month."
-  Henry Van Dyke, Fisherman's Luck

 

"The air and the earth interpenetrated in the warm gusts of spring; the soil was full of sunlight, and the sunlight full of red dust.  The air one breathed was saturated with earthy smells, and the grass under foot had a reflection of the blue sky in it."
-  Willa Cather

 

"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."
-  William Wordsworth

 

"Late April and you are three; today 
We dug your garden in the yard. 
To curb the damage of your play, 
Strange dogs at night and the moles tunneling, 
Four slender sticks of lath stand guard 
Uplifting their thin string. 
So you were the first to tramp it down. 
And after the earth was sifted close 
You brought your watering can to drown 
All earth and us.  But these mixed seeds are pressed 
With light loam in their steadfast rows. 
Child, we've done our best."
-  W. D. Snodgrass

 

"I think that no matter how old or infirm I may become, I will always plant a large garden in the spring.  Who can resist the feelings of hope and joy that one gets from participating in nature's rebirth?"
-  Edward Giobbi 

 

"I sowed the seeds of love,
It was all in the spring,
In April, May, and June, likwise,
When small birds they do sing."
-  Fleetwood Habergham, The Seeds of Love, 1690

 

"May and June.  Soft syllables, gentle names for the two best months in the garden year:  cool, misty mornings gently burned away with a warming spring sun, followed by breezy afternoons and chilly nights.  The discussion of philosophy is over; it's time for work to begin."
-  Peter Loewer

 

"O the green things growing, the green things growing,
The faint sweet smell of the green things growing!
I should like to live, whether I smile or grieve,
Just to watch the happy life of my green things growing."
-  Dinah Maria Mulock Craik, Green Things Growing

 

"To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter; to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird’s nest or a wildflower in spring — these are some of the rewards of the simple life." 
–  John Burroughs

 

“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive - to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.”
-  Marcus Aurelius 

 

"The force of Spring -
mysterious,
fecund,
powerful beyond measure."
-  Michael Garofalo, Cuttings

 

“Waking up in the morning, I vow with all beings to be ready for sparks of the Dharma from flowers or children or birds.”
-  Robert Aitken 

 

"Spring is when you feel like whistling even with a shoe full of slush."
-  Doug Larson 

 

"O thou with dewy locks, who lookest down
Thro' the clear windows of the morning, turn
Thine angel eyes upon our western isle,
Which in full choir hails thy approach, O Spring!

The hills tell each other, and the listening
Valleys hear; all our longing eyes are turned
Up to thy bright pavilions: issue forth,
And let thy holy feet visit our clime.

Come o'er the eastern hills, and let our winds
Kiss thy perfumed garments; let us taste
Thy morn and evening breath; scatter thy pearls
Upon our love-sick land that mourns for thee."
-  William Blake, To Spring, 1820 

 

"The spring sea rising
and falling, rising
and falling all day."
-  Yosa Buson 

 

"There is an appointed time for everything. 
And there is a time for every event under heaven -
A time to give birth, and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted."
-  Ecclesiastes, 3:1-2

 

"I love spring anywhere, but if I could choose I would always greet it in a garden."
-  Ruth Stout

"If Spring came but once in a century, instead of once a year, or burst forth with the sound of an earthquake, and not in silence, what wonder and expectation there would be in all hearts to behold the miraculous change!  But now the silent succession suggests nothing but necessity.  To most men only the cessation of the miracle would be miraculous and the perpetual exercise of God's power seems less wonderful than its withdrawal would be."
-  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

 

"This I saw on an April day: 
Warm rain spilt from a sun-lined cloud, 
A sky-flung wave of gold at evening, 
And a cock pheasant treading a dusty path 
Shy and proud. 
And this I found in an April field: 
A new white calf in the sun at noon, 
A flash of blue in a cool moss bank, 
And tips of tulips promising flowers 
To a blue-winged loon."
-  James Hearst 

 

"Sweetly breathing , vernal air,
That with kind warmth doth repair
Winter's ruins; from whose breast
All the gums and spice of the East
Borrow their perfumes; whose eye
Gilds the morn, and clears the sky."
-  Thomas Carew, 1595 - 1645

 

"Sitting quietly, doing nothing,
Spring comes, and the grass grows by itself."
The Gospel According To Zen

 

"The cuckoo comes in April,
Sings a song in May:
Then in June another tune,
And then she flies away."
-  English Rhyme

 

"In the scenery of spring,
nothing is better, nothing worse;
The flowering branches are
of themselves, some short, some long."
-  Ryokan

 

"Happiness?  The color of it must be spring green, impossible to describe until I see a just-hatched lizard sunning on a stone.  That color, the glowing green lizard skin, repeats in every new leaf.   ...  The regenerative power of nature explodes in every weed, stalk, branch.  Working in the mild sun, I feel the green fuse of my body, too. Surges of energy, kaleidoscopic sunlight through the leaves, the soft breeze that makes me want to say the word "zephyr" - this mindless simplicity can be called happiness."
-  Frances, Mayes, Bella Tuscany: The Sweet Life in Italy, 1999 

 

"When the time is ripe for certain things, these things appear in different places in the manner of violets coming to light in the early spring."
-  Farkas Bolyai

 

 

 

 

"April hath put a spirit of youth in everything."
-  William Shakespeare

 

"April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain."
-  T. S. Eliot, The Waste Land, 1922

 

"Only in dreams of spring
Shall I ever see again
The flowering of my cherry trees."
-  Frances Hodgson Burnett

 

"I don't believe the half I hear,
Nor the quarter of what I see!
But I have one faith, sublime and true,
That nothing can shake or slay;
Each spring I firmly believe anew
All the seed catalogues say!"
-  Carolyn Wells

 

"Mine is the time of foliage,
When hills and valleys teem
With buds and vines sweet scented,
All clothed in glowing green.

My nights are bright and starry,
My days are long and clear
And truly I'm the fairest,
Of all months in the year."
-  Mary Fordham, June 

 

"A Light exists in Spring
Not present on the Year
At any other period --
When March is scarcely here
A Color stands abroad
On Solitary Fields
That Science cannot overtake
But Human Nature feels.

It waits upon the Lawn,
It shows the furthest Tree
Upon the furthest Slope you know
It almost speaks to you.

Then as Horizons step
Or Noons report away
Without the Formula of sound
It passes and we stay --

A quality of loss
Affecting our Content
As Trade had suddenly encroached
Upon a Sacrament."
-  Emily Dickinson, A Light Exists in Spring

 

"So Spring comes merry towards me here, but earns
No answering smile from me, whose life is twin'd
With the dead boughs that winter still must bind,
And whom today the Spring no more concerns.
Behold, this crocus is a withering flame;
This snowdrop, snow; this apple-blossom's part
To breed the fruit that breeds the serpent's art.
Nay, for these Spring-flowers, turn thy face from them,
Nor stay till on the year's last lily-stem
The white cup shrivels round the golden heart."
-  Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Barren Spring, 1870 

 

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Hydrofarm Jump Start Indoor Grow Light System 
Plant Propagation A to Z: Growing Plants for Free  
Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners  
Hydrofarm Germination Station with Heat Mat  
American Horticultural Society Plant Propagation: The Fully Illustrated Plant-by-Plant Manual    
Burpee Seed Starter: A Guide to Growing Flower, Vegetable, and Herb Seeds Indoors and Outdoors
Plant Propagator's Bible
The New Seed Starter's Handbook
RION MLT3 Mini Lean-To Greenhouse
Seed Sowing and Saving: Step-by-Step Techniques for Collecting and Growing  

 

"Now summer is in flower and natures hum 
Is never silent round her sultry bloom 
Insects as small as dust are never done 
Wi' glittering dance and reeling in the sun 
And green wood fly and blossom haunting bee 
Are never weary of their melody 
Round field hedge now flowers in full glory twine 
Large bindweed bells wild hop and streakd woodbine 
That lift athirst their slender throated flowers 
Agape for dew falls and for honey showers 
These round each bush in sweet disorder run 
And spread their wild hues to the sultry sun."
-  John Clare, June

 

"In Roman mythology, Flora was a goddess of flowers and the season of spring.  While she was otherwise a relatively minor figure in Roman mythology, being one among several fertility goddesses, her association with the spring gave her particular importance at the coming of springtime. Her festival, the Floralia, was held in April or early May and symbolized the renewal of the cycle of life, marked with dancing, drinking, and flowers.  Her Greek equivalent was Chloris.  Flora was married to Favonius, the wind god, and her companion was Hercules.  Due to her association with plants, her name in modern English also means plant life.  Flora achieved more prominence in the neo-pagan revival of Antiquity among Renaissance humanists than she had ever enjoyed in ancient Rome."
Flora (Mythology) - Wikipedia 

 

 



Detail of Flora from Primavera by Botticelli, c. 1482

 

"When the clouds shake their hyssops, and the rain
Like holy water falls upon the plain,
'Tis sweet to gaze upon the springing grain
And see your harvest born.
And sweet the little breeze of melody
The blackbord puffs upon the budding tree,
While the wild poppy lights upon the lea
And blazes 'mid the corn."
-  Francis Ledwidge, A Rainy Day in April 

 

"Science has never drummed up quite as effective a tranquilizing agent as a sunny spring day."
-  W. Earl Hall

 

"One week later ...
Six Directions of Green
Billions of leaf-buds."
-  Mike Garofalo, Cuttings 

 

"The country habit has me by the heart,
For he's bewitched forever who has seen,
Not with his eyes but with his vision, Spring
Flow down the woods and stipple leaves with sun."
-  Vita Sackville-West

 

"Again rejoicing Nature sees
Her robe assume its vernal hues
Her leafy locks wave in the breeze,
All freshly steep'd in the morning dews."
-  Robert Burns 

 

"It is one of the first days of Spring, and I sit once more in the old garden where I hear no faintest echo of the obscene rumbling of London streets which are yet so little away.  Here the only movement I am conscious of is that of the trees shooting forth their first sprays of bright green, and of the tulips expanding the radiant beauty of their flaming globes, and the only sound I hear is the blackbird's song -- the liquid softly gurgling notes that seem to well up spontaneously from an infinite joy, an infinite peace, at the heart of nature and bring a message not from some remote Heaven of the Sky or Future, but the Heaven that is Here, beneath our feet, even beneath the exquisite texture of our own skins, the joy, the peace, at the Heart of the Mystery which is Man.  For man alone can hear the Revelation that lies in the blackbird's song.
-  Havelock Ellis, Impressions and Comments, 1918

 

 

Green Way Blog

 

 

"If I had my life to live over, I would start barefoot earlier in the spring and stay that way later in the fall."
-  Nadine Stair

 

"Earth, my dearest, I will.  Oh believe me, you no longer need your springtimes to win me over - one of them, ah, even one, is already too much for my blood.  Unspeakably, I have belonged to you, from the first."
-  Rainer Maria Rilke, Duino Elegies, 9th, 1923

 

"This spring as it comes bursts up in bonfires green,
Wild puffing of emerald trees, and flame-filled bushes,
Thorn-blossom lifting in wreaths of smoke between
Where the wood fumes up and the watery, flickering rushes.
I am amazed at this spring, this conflagration
Of green fires lit on the soil of the earth, this blaze
Of growing, and sparks that puff in wild gyration,
Faces of people streaming across my gaze."
-  D. H. Lawrence, The Enkindled Spring

 

"The year's at the spring
And day's at the morn;
Morning's at seven;
The hill-side's dew-pearled;
The lark's on the wing;
The snail's on the thorn:
God's in his heaven,
All's right with the world!"
-  Robert Browning 

 

"In June as many as a dozen species may burst their buds on a single day.  No man can heed all of these anniversaries; no man can ignore all of them."
-  Aldo Leopold

 

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Keeping a Nature Journal: Discover a Whole New Way of Seeing the World Around You
Journal to the Self: Twenty-Two Paths to Personal Growth    
How to Keep a Naturalist's Notebook  
Visual Journaling: Going Deeper than Words  
Nature Journaling: Learning to Observe and Connect with the World Around You
Writing Down Your Soul: How to Activate and Listen to the Extraordinary Voice Within  
Mixed-Media Nature Journals: New Techniques for Exploring Nature, Life, and Memories
Creative Wildfire: An Introduction to Art Journaling - Basics and Beyond  
Inner Journeying Through Art-Journaling: Learning to See And Record Your Life As a Work of Art  

 

"Autumn arrives in the early morning, but spring at the close of a winter day."
-  Elizabeth Bowen 

 

"In the same way, you were happy in spring,
With the half colors of quarter-things,
The slightly brighter sky, the melting clouds,
The single bird, the obscure moon- The obscure moon lighting an obscure world
Of thing that would never be quite expressed,
Where you yourself were never quite yourself
And did not want nor have to be ..."
-  Wallace Stevens, The Motive for Metaphor  

 

"Gardener’s , like everyone else, live second by second and minute by minute.  What we see at one particular moment is then and there before us. But there is a second way of seeing.  Seeing with the eye of memory, not the eye of our anatomy, calls up days and seasons past and years gone by."
-  Allen Lacy, The Gardener’s Eye, 1992

 

"Hoe while it is spring, and enjoy the best anticipations.  It is not much matter if things do not turn out well."
-  Charles Dudley Warner

 

"The tree is stripped,
All color, fragrance gone,
Yet already on the bough,
Uncaring spring!"
-  Ikkyu, Zen Poems of China and Japan

 

"Mine is the Month of Roses; yes, and mine
The Month of Marriages! All pleasant sights
And scents, the fragrance of the blossoming vine,
The foliage of the valleys and the heights.
Mine are the longest days, the loveliest nights;
The mower's scythe makes music to my ear;
I am the mother of all dear delights;
I am the fairest daughter of the year."
-  Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

 

 

"Summer makes me drowsy,
Autumn makes me sing,
Winter’s pretty lousy,
but I hate Spring."
-  Dorothy Parker

 

"Spring shows what God can do with a drab and dirty world."
-  Virgil A. Kraft 

 

"Will it always be like this until I am dead, 
Every spring must I bear it all again 
With the first red haze of the budding maple boughs, 
And the first sweet-smelling rain? 
Oh I am like a rock in the rising river 
Where the flooded water breaks with a low call -- 
Like a rock that knows the cry of the waters 
And cannot answer at all."
-  Sara, Spring Torrents

 

"Certain miracles that I beheld there have haunted my memory ever since: a gray April morning of sirocco, when the almond blossoms, the flaming tulips, the young green of the vines, hung as if painted on the motionless air; a summer night when the roses had an unearthly pallor under a half-eaten moon, whose ghostliness was somehow one with their perfume and with the phosphorescence of dew tipping their petals; a day when the trees stood part submerged in fog, into which leaves dropped slowly, slowly, one after another, and sank out of sight.
-  H. G. Dwight, Gardens and Gardening, Atlantic Monthly, 1912

 

"The naked earth is warm with Spring,
And with green grass and bursting trees
Leans to the sun's kiss glorying,
And quivers in the sunny breeze."
-  Julian Grenfell 

 

"The oak tree:
not interested
in cherry blossoms."
-  Basho

 

"For winter's rains and ruins are over,
And all the season of snows and sins;
The days dividing lover and lover,
The light that loses, the night that wins;
And time remembered is grief forgotten,
And frosts are slain and flowers begotten,
And in green underwood and cover
Blossom by blossom the spring begins."
-  Algernon Charles Swinburne, Atalanta in Calydon

 

"No days such honored days as these! While yet
Fair Aphrodite reigned, men seeking wide
For some fair thing which should forever bide
On earth, her beauteous memory to set
In fitting frame that no age could forget,
Her name in lovely April's name did hide,
And leave it there, eternally allied
To all the fairest flowers Spring did beget."
-  Helen Hunt Jackson, Calendar of Sonnets - April, 1875 

 

"From all these trees,
in the salads, the soup, everywhere,
cherry blossoms fall."
-  Basho

 

"Now Nature hangs her mantle green
On every blooming tree,
And spreads her sheets o'daisies white
Out o'er the grassy lea."
-  Robert Burns

 

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"The sun was warm but the wind was chill.
You know how it is with an April day.
When the sun is out and the wind is still,
You're one month on in the middle of May.
But if you so much as dare to speak,
a cloud come over the sunlit arch,
And wind comes off a frozen peak,
And you're two months back in the middle of March."
-  Robert Frost

 

"A swarm of bees in May
Is worth a load of hay;
A swarm of bees in June
Is worth a silver spoon;
A swarm of bees in July
Is not worth a fly."
-  Rhyme from England

 

"Sun, my relative
Be good coming out
Do something good for us.
Make me work.
I can do anything in the garden;
I hoe, I plant corn, I irrigate."
-  Havasupai prayer

 

"In the Spring a livelier iris changes on the burnish'd dove;
In the Spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.”
-  Alfred Lord Tennyson

 

"Let us dance in the sun, wearing wild flowers in our hair
and let us huddle together as darkness takes over
We are at home amidst the birds and the trees, for we are children of nature.
-  Susan Polis Shutz

 

"Winter is on my head, but eternal spring is in my heart."
-  Victor Hugo 

 

"On this June day the buds in my garden are almost as enchanting as the open flowers.  Things in bud bring, in the heat of a June noontide, the recollection of the loveliest days of the year - those days of May when all is suggested, nothing yet fulfilled."
-  Francis King

 

"The true harbinger of spring is not crocuses or swallows returning to Capistrano, but the sound of the bat on the ball."
-  Bill Veeck 

 

"Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough."
-  A. E. Housman, A Shropshire Lad, 1896

 

"To the garden of the world anew descending,
Potent mates, daughters, sons, preluding,
The love, the life of their bodies, meaning and being,
Curious here behold my resurrection after slumber,
The revolving cycles in their wide sweep having brought me again,
amorous, mature, all beautiful to me, all wondrous,
My limbs and the quivering fire that ever plays through them, for reasons, most wondrous,
Existing I peer and penetrate still,
Content with the present, content with the past,
By my side or back of me Eve following,
Or in front, and I following her just the same." 
-  Walt Whitman, To the Garden of the World 

 

"Every spring is the only spring - a perpetual astonishment."
-  Ellis Peters

 

"Spring is sooner recognized by plants than by men."
-  Chinese Proverb

 

"Spring has come,
Loudly sing cuckoo !
Groweth seed and blooms mead
And springs the wood now.
Sing cuckoo!"
-  English Poetry from the Middle Ages

 

"That God once loved a garden we learn in Holy writ.
And seeing gardens in the Spring I well can credit it."
-  Winifred Mary Letts

 

"Spring slattern of seasons
you have soggy legs
and a muddy petticoat
drowsy

is your hair your
eyes are sticky with
dream and you have a sloppy body from

being brought to bed of crocuses
when you sing in your whisky voice
the grass rises on the head of the earth
and all the trees are put on edge

spring
of the excellent jostle of
thy hips
and the superior."
-  E. E. Cummings, Spring Onmipotent Goddess Thou

 

"One attraction in coming to the woods to live was that I should have leisure and opportunity to see the spring come in."
-  Henry David Thoreau

 

"The thorn tree just began to bud
And greening stained the sheltering hedge,
An many a violet beside the wood
Peeped blue between the withered sedge;
The sun gleamed warm the bank beside,
'Twas pleasant wandering out a while
Neath nestling bush to lonely hide,
Or bend a musings o'er a stile."
-  John Clare, 1840 

 

"The fields are snowbound no longer;
There are little blue lakes and flags of tenderest green.
The snow has been caught up into the sky--
So many white clouds--and the blue of the sky is cold.
Now the sun walks in the forest,
He touches the bows and stems with his golden fingers;
They shiver, and wake from slumber.
Over the barren branches he shakes his yellow curls.
Yet is the forest full of the sound of tears....
A wind dances over the fields.
Shrill and clear the sound of her waking laughter,
Yet the little blue lakes tremble
And the flags of tenderest green bend and quiver."
-  Katherine Mansifield, Very Early Spring

 

The Dry Gardening Handbook: Plants and Practices for a Changing Climate by Oliver Flippi
Drought Resistant Planting by Beth Chatto 
Xeriscape Handbook: A How-to Guide to Natural Resource-Wise Gardening by Gale Weinstein
The Low-Water Flower Gardener by Eric Johnson
Western Landscaping Book by Kathleen Bresnel
All About Dry Climate Gardening by Ortho 
Plants For Dry Climates: How To Select, Grow, And Enjoy  by Mary Duffield 
Landscape Plants For Dry Regions: More Than 600 Species From Around The World by Warren Jones 

 

"The spring is fresh and fearless
And every leaf is new,
The world is brimmed with moonlight,
The lilac brimmed with dew.

Here in the moving shadows
I catch my breath and sing --
My heart is fresh and fearless
And over-brimmed with spring."
-  Sara Teasdale, May Night, 1920

 

"See what delights in sylvan scenes appear!
Descending Gods have found Elysium here.
In woods bright Venus with Adonis stray'd,
And chaste Diana haunts the forest shade.
Come lovely nymph, and bless the silent hours,
When swains from shearing seek their nightly bow'rs;
When weary reapers quit the sultry field,
And crown'd with corn, their thanks to Ceres yield.
This harmless grove no lurking viper hides,
But in my breast the serpent Love abides.
Here bees from blossoms sip the rosy dew,
But your Alexis knows no sweets but you.
Oh deign to visit our forsaken seats,
The mossy fountains, and the green retreats!
Where-e'er you walk, cool gales shall fan the glade,
Trees, where you sit, shall crowd into a shade,
Where-e'er you tread, the blushing flow'rs shall rise,
And all things flourish where you turn your eyes."
-  Alexander Pope, Summer

 

"Spring has again returned. 
The Earth is like a child that knows many poems.
Many, O so many.  For the hardship
of such long learning she receives the prize.

Strict was her teacher. 
The white in the old man's beard pleases us.
Now, what to call green, to call blue,
we dare to ask: She knows, She knows!"
-  Rainer Marie Rilke, Sonnets to Orpheus, XXI

 

"Spring everywhere -
cottonwood seed fluff
under each foot."
-  Michael Garofalo, Cuttings 

 

"Spring makes everything look filthy."
-  Katherine Whitehorn 

 

"Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night."  
-  Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters of Rainer Maria Rilke 

 

"Spring passes and one remembers one's innocence. Summer passes and one remembers one's exuberance.
Autumn passes and one remembers one's reverence. Winter passes and one remembers one's perseverance."
-  Yoko Ono

 

Ostara: Customs, Spells & Rituals for the Rites of Spring By Edain McCoy
Easter, Passover, and Other Spring Festivals by Ann Morrill 
Beltane: Springtime Rituals, Lore and Celebration by Raven Grimassi
In Celebration of Spring: A Book of Seasonal Indulgences by Helen Thompson 
Spring: Recipes Inspired by Nature's Bounty (Williams-Sonoma Seasonal Celebration) by Joanne Weir
The Spring Equinox: Celebrating the Greening of the Earth by Ellen Jackson

 

"The sun is on fire
In the sky
And in its warmth
Flowers open
In the garden
And the butterfly
Flutters by."
-  Stanley Cook

 

"Now every field is clothed with grass, and every tree with leaves; now the woods put forth their blossoms, and the year assumes its gay attire."
-  Virgil

 

"For lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come
and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.
The fig tree puts forth its figs, and the vines are in blossom;
they give forth fragrance.
Arise my love, my fair one,
and come away."
-  The Song of Solomon, 2:11-13

 

"Walking around
an early spring garden--
going nowhere."
-  Kyoshi

 

"Sweet spring, full of sweet days and roses, a box where sweets compacted lie."
-  George Herbert

 

"And what is so rare as a day in June?
Then, if ever, come perfect days;
Then Heaven tries the earth if it be in tune,
And over it softly her warm ear lays."
-  James Russell Lowell

 

"Every year back spring comes, with nasty little birds, yapping their fool heads off and the ground all mucked up with plants."
-  Dorothy Parker

 

"But each spring a gardening instinct, sure as the sap rising in the trees, stirs within us.  We look about and decide to tame another little bit of ground."
-  Lewis Gantt 

 

"One swallow does not make a summer, but one skein of geese, cleaving the murk of March thaw, is the Spring."
-  Aldo Leopold  

 

"There ought to be Gardens for all Months in the year, in which, severally, things of Beauty may be then in season." 
-  Sir Francis Bacon

 

"This outward spring and garden are a reflection of the inward garden."
-  Rumi

 

"There is nothing like the first hot days of spring when the gardener stops wondering if it's too soon to plant the dahlias and starts wondering if it's too late.  Even the most beautiful weather will not allay the gardener's notion (well-founded actually) that he is somehow too late, too soon, or that he has too much stuff going on or not enough.  For the garden is the stage on which the gardener exults and agonizes out every crest and chasm of the heart."
-  Henry Mitchell, The Essential Earthman  

 

"Now is the time of the illuminated woods ... when every leaf glows like a tiny lamp."
-  J. Burroughs 

 

"I sing of brooks, of blossoms, birds, and bowers:
Of April, May, or June, and July flowers.
I sing of Maypoles, Hock-carts, wassails, wakes,
Of bridegrooms, brides, and of the bridal cakes."
-  Robert Herrick, Hesperides, 1648

 

"What joy have I in June's return?
My feet are parched--my eyeballs burn,
I scent no flowery gust;
But faint the flagging zephyr springs,
With dry Macadam on its wings,
And turns me 'dust to dust.' "
-  Thomas Hood, Town and Country

 

"One of the greatest virtues of gardening is this perpetual renewal of youth and spring, of promise of flower and fruit that can always be read in the open book of the garden, by those with an eye to see, and a mind to understand." 
-  E.A. Bowles 

 

"You can't see Canada across lake Erie, but you know it's there.  It's the same with spring.  You have to have faith, especially in Cleveland."
-  Paul Fleischman, Seedfolks 

 

"I don't know what smell of wet earth or rotting leaves brought back my childhood with a rush and all the happy days I had spent in a garden.  Shall I ever forget that day?  It was the beginning of my real life, my coming of age as it were, and entering into my kingdom.  Early March, gray, quiet skies, and brown, quiet earth; leafless and sad and lonely enough out there in the damp and silence, yet there I stood feeling the same rapture of pure delight in the first breath of spring that I used to as a child, and the five wasted years fell from me like a cloak, and the world was full of hope, and I vowed myself then andthere to nature and have been happy ever since."
-  Elizabeth von Arnim, Elizabeth & Her German Garden, 1898

 

"What potent blood hath modest May."
-  Ralph Waldo Emerson 

 

"To be interested in the changing seasons is a happier state of mind than to be hopelessly in love with spring."
-  George Santayana

 

"O the green things growing the green things growing,
The fair sweet smell of the green things growing."
-  Dinah Mulock Craik 

 

"The world's favorite season is the spring. 
All things seem possible in May."
-  Edwin Way Teale 

 

"The month of June is probably named after Juno, the wife of Jupiter, and queen of the gods [Hera in Greek mythology]. It was held sacred to her, and was thought by the Romans to be the luckiest month for marriage, since Juno was the Goddess of Marriage. Wherever the goddess went she was attended by her messenger Iris (the Rainbow), who journeyed so quickly through the air that she was seldom seen, but after she had passed there was often left in the sky the radiant trail of her highly-coloured robe.  Juno is always represented as a tall, beautiful woman, wearing a crown and bearing a sceptre in her hand, and often she is shown with a peacock at her side, since that bird was sacred to her.  A story is told of one of her servants, Argus, who had a hundred eyes, only a few of which he closed at a time. Juno set him to watch over a cow which Jupiter wished to steal, for it was really a beautiful girl named Io, whom Jupiter had transformed. Mercury was sent by Jupiter to carry off Io, and by telling long and wearisome stories to Argus at last succeeded in lulling him into so deep a sleep that he closed all his eyes. The god then seized Argus's own sword and cut off his head.  Juno was very sad at the loss of her servant, and gathering up his hundred eyes scattered them over the tail of the peacock, her favourite bird."  
-   Stories of the Months and Days   [Compare with Sarasvati, Hindu River Goddess, Patron of the Arts and Sciences, with a Peacock or Swan as her totem.] 

 

 

 

 

"O Day after day we can't help growing older.
Year after year spring can't help seeming younger.
Come let's enjoy our winecup today,
Nor pity the flowers fallen."
-  Wang Wei, On Parting with Spring  

 

"When there's new growth bursting out all over, everything fresh, green, and flourishing, the plants are little rockets of success going off every time you look at them."
-  Jacqueline Heriteau

 

"Break open
A cherry tree
And there are no flowers,
But the spring breeze
Brings forth myriad blossoms."
-  Ikkyu Sojun, 1394-1481

 

"Spring unlocks the flowers to paint the laughing soil."
-  Reginald Heber

 

"In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer quite the other way,
I have to go to bed by day.

I have to go to bed and see
The birds still hopping on the tree,
Or hear the grown-up people's feet
Still going past me in the street.

And does it not seem hard to you,
When all the sky is clear and blue,
And I should like so much to play,
To have to go to bed by day?"
-  Robert Louis Stevenson, Bed in Summer 

 
Backyard Bird Secrets for Every Season: Attract a Variety of Nesting, Feeding, and Singing Birds Year-Round
In Nature's Honor: Myths And Rituals Celebrating The Earth by Patricia Montley.  Respectful and engaging review. 
The Druidry Handbook: Spiritual Practice Rooted in the Living Earth
Reasons for the Seasons: Origins of the Christian Holidays
Creating Circles & Ceremonies: Rituals for All Seasons And Reasons  This is a valuable collection of information, poetry, rituals, songs, and craft activities for seasonal celebrations.     

 

"Thirty days hath September,
April, June, and November,
February eight-and-twenty all alone,
And all the rest have thirty-one;
Unless that leap year doth combine,
And give to February twenty-nine."
-  Richard Grafton

 

"The hum of bees is the voice of the garden." 
-  Elizabeth Lawrence

 

"The afternoon is bright,
with spring in the air,
a mild March afternoon,
with the breath of April stirring,
I am alone in the quiet patio
looking for some old untried illusion -
some shadow on the whiteness of the wall
some memory asleep
on the stone rim of the fountain,
perhaps in the air
the light swish of some trailing gown."
-  Antonio Machado

 

"Ahh, the wide almond groves in full white flower
Stunning in the morning sun.
Old naked Winter in his garb of grays and browns has run.
Forsythia blooms come and go in the blink of a yellow Eye,
Then, suddenly, mysteriously, Green erupts; and we sigh."
-  Michael P. Garofalo 

 

"One flower does not bring spring.
A good year is determined by its spring."
-  Afghan proverbs 

 

"Spring - An experience in immortality."
-  Henry D. Thoreau

 

"Swiftly the years, beyond recall,
Solemn the stillness of this fair morning,
I will clothe myself in spring-clothing,
And visit the slopes of the Eastern Hill,
By the mountain-stream a mist hovers,
Hovers a moment, then scatters,
There comes a wind blowing from the south
That brushes the fields of new corn."
-  Chinese poem, Translated by Arthur Waley

 

"The crocuses and the larch turning green every year a week before the others and the pastures red with uneaten sheep's placentas and the long summer days and the newmown hay and the wood pigeon in the morning and the cuckoo in the afternoon and the corncrake in the evening and the wasps in the jam and the smell of grose and the look of the gorse and the apples falling and the children walking in the dead leaves and the larch turning brown a week before the others and the chestnuts falling and the howling winds and the sea breaking over the pier and the first fires and the hooves on the road and the consumptive postman whistling "The Roses are Blooming in Picardy" and the standard oil-lamp and of course the snow and to be sure the sleet and bless your heart the slush and every fourth year the February debacle and the endless April showers and the crocuses and then the whole bloody business starting all over again."
-  Samuel Beckett, Watt 

 

"The country ever has a lagging Spring,
Waiting for May to call its violets forth,
And June its roses--showers and sunshine bring,
Slowly, the deepening verdure o'er the earth;
To put their foliage out, the woods are slack,
And one by one the singing-birds come back.

Within the city's bounds the time of flowers
Comes earlier. Let a mild and sunny day,
Such as full often, for a few bright hours,
Breathes through the sky of March the airs of May,
Shine on our roofs and chase the wintry gloom--
And lo! our borders glow with sudden bloom."
-  William Cullen Bryant, Spring in Town, 1850

 

"So Spring comes merry towards me here, but earns
No answering smile from me, whose life is twin'd
With the dead boughs that winter still must bind,
And whom today the Spring no more concerns.
Behold, this crocus is a withering flame;
This snowdrop, snow; this apple-blossom's part
To breed the fruit that breeds the serpent's art.
Nay, for these Spring-flowers, turn thy face from them,
Nor stay till on the year's last lily-stem
The white cup shrivels round the golden heart."
-  Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Barren Spring, 1870

 

"Now every field is clothed with grass, and every tree with leaves;
Now the woods put forth their blossoms, and the year assumes it's gay attire."
-  Virgil

 

"March in the garden -
my hostess shows me brown sticks
and speaks of flowers."
-  Sister Benedicta 

 

'Are we to look at cherry blossoms only in full bloom, the moon only when it is cloudless?  To long for the moon while looking on the rain, to lower the blinds and be unaware of the passing of the spring - these are even more deeply moving.  Branches about to blossom or gardens strewn with flowers are worthier of our admiration."
-  Yoshida Kenko

 

"Good weather all the week, but come the weekend the weather stinks. 
Springtime for birth, Summertime for growth; and all Seasons for dying.
Ripening grapes in the summer sun - reason enough to plod ahead. 
Springtime flows in our veins.  
Beauty is the Mistress, the gardener Her salve. 
A soul is colored Spring green.  
Complexity is closer to the truth. 
When the Divine knocks, don't send a prophet to the door. 
All metaphors aside - only living beings rise up in the Springtime; dead beings stay quite lie down dead. 
Winter does not turn into Summer; ash does not turn into firewood - on the chopping block of time. 
Fresh fruit from the tree - sweet summertime! 
Gardens are demanding pets. 
Shade was the first shelter. 
One spring and one summer to know life's hope; one autumn and one winter to know life's fate. 
Somehow, someway, everything gets eaten up, someday. 
Relax and be still around the bees. 
Paradise and shade are close relatives on a summer day. 
Absolutes squirm beneath realities. 
The spiders, grasshoppers, mantis, and moth larva are all back:  the summer crowd has returned!
To garden is to open your heart to the sky.
Dirty fingernails and a calloused palm precede a Green Thumb." 
-   Michael P. Garofalo, Pulling Onions 

 

"Earth is dry to the center,
But spring, a new comer,
A spring rich and strange,
Shall make the winds blow
Round and round,
Thro' and thro' ,
Here and there,
Till the air
And the ground
Shall be fill'd with life anew."
-  Alfred Tennyson, Nothing Will Die

 

"The month of May was come, when every lusty heart beginneth to blossom, and to bring forth fruit; for like as herbs and trees bring forth fruit and flourish in May, in likewise every lusty heart that is in any manner a lover, springeth and flourisheth in lusty deeds.  For it giveth unto all lovers courage, that lusty month of May."  
-  Sir Thomas Malory, Le Morte d'Arthur, 1485 

 

"My heart that was rapt away by the wild cherry blossoms - will it return to my body when they scatter?"
-  Kotomichi 

 

"Sprigs of plum by the corner of the wall
Are blooming alone in the cold;
If not for the subtle fragrance drifting over
Who could tell this from snow on the boughs."
-  Wang Anshi, Plum Blossom, 1060 

 

 

  
Months and Seasons
Quotes, Poems, Sayings, Verses, Lore, Myths, Holidays
Celebrations, Folklore, Reading, Links, Quotations
Information, Weather, Gardening Chores
 

Winter

Spring

Summer

Fall

January

April

July

October

February

May

August

November

March

June

September

December 

 

 

"Dropped off
body and mind -
weeding new cuttings."
-  Michael P. Garofalo, Cuttings

 

"Drenching the pavement,
warming the wall,
bathing the cat
in a slumbering sprawl ...

Waking the buds
that break from the tree.
Shaking out gold,
and all for free."
-  Tony Mitton, Spring Sunshine

 

Flower by Christopher Beane
Flowers and Fables: A Welsh Herbal by Jocelyne Lawton
The Flower Gardener's Bible: Time-Tested Techniques, Creative Designs, and Perfect Plants for Colorful Gardens by Nancy Hill.
The Gardener's A-Z Guide to Growing Flowers from Seed to Bloom: 576 Annuals, Perennials, and Bulbs in Full Color by Eileen Powell 

 

"January cold and desolate;
February dripping wet;
March wind ranges;
April changes;
Birds sing in tune
To flowers of May,
And sunny June
Brings longest day;
In scorched July
The storm-clouds fly,
Lightning-torn;
August bears corn,
September fruit;
In rough October
Earth must disrobe her;
Stars fall and shoot
In keen November;
And night is long
And cold is strong
In bleak December."
-  Christina Giorgina Rossetti, The Months

 

"Spring would not be spring without bird songs."
-  Francis M. Chapman

 

"Reaching for the heart
of spring--
wind from tree to tree."
-  Aro

 

"Ask of Her, the mighty Mother.
Her reply puts this other
Question: What is Spring?-
Growth in every thing -

Flesh and fleece, fur and feather,
Grass and green world all together,
Star-eyed strawberry breasted
Throstle above Her nested

Cluster of bugle blue eggs thin
Forms and warms the life within,
And bird and blossom swell
In sod or sheath or shell."
-  Gerard Manly Hopkins, The May Magnificant, 1888 

 

"The April rain, the April rain,
Comes slanting down in fitful showers,
Then from the furrow shoots the grain,
And banks are fledged with nestling flowers;
And in grey shawl and woodland bowers
The cuckoo through the April rain
Calls once again."
-  Mathilde Blind, April Rain    

 

"And Spring arose on the garden fair,
Like the Spirit of Love felt everywhere;
And each flower and herb on Earth's dark breast
rose from the dreams of its wintry rest."
-  Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Sensitive Plant, 1820

 

"Plum blossoms:
my Spring
is ecstasy"
-  Issa

 

Wild Lilies, Irises, and Grasses: Gardening with California Monocots by Nora Harlow
Joy in Your Garden: A Seasonal Guide to Gardening
Intimacy: The Sensual Essence of Flowers by Joyce Tenneson
Daylilies: The Perfect Perennial by Nancy Hill
Daylilies for the Garden by Graeme Grosvenor
Hollyhocks and Honeybees: Garden Projects for Young Children by Sara Starbuck

 

"First a howling blizzard woke us,
Then the rain came down to soak us,
And now before the eye can focus -
Crocus."
-  Lilja Rogers

 

"Blessed be the Lord for the beauty of summer and spring, for the air, the water, the verdure, and the song of birds." 
-  Carl von Linnaeus

 

"When the hounds of Spring are on winter's traces,
The mother of months in meadow or plain
Fills the shadows and windy places
With lisp of leaves and ripple of rain."
-  Swinburne

 

"A delicate fabric of bird song 
Floats in the air, 
The smell of wet wild earth 
Is everywhere. 
Oh I must pass nothing by 
Without loving it much, 
The raindrop try with my lips, 
The grass with my touch; 
For how can I be sure 
I shall see again 
The world on the first of May 
Shining after the rain?" 
-  Sara Teasdale, May Day 

 

"Nothing is so beautiful as spring—
When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;
Thrush's eggs look little low heavens, and thrush
Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring
The ear, it strikes like lightnings to hear him sing;
The glassy peartree leaves and blooms, they brush
The descending blue; that blue is all in a rush
With richness; the racing lambs too have fair their fling.
What is all this juice and all this joy?
A strain of the earth's sweet being in the beginning
In Eden garden.—Have, get, before it cloy..."
-  Gerald Manly Hopkins, Spring

 

"Now the bright morning-star, Day’s harbinger,
Comes dancing from the East, and leads with her
The flowery May, who from her green lap throws
The yellow cowslip and the pale primrose.
Hail, bounteous May, that dost inspire
Mirth, and youth, and warm desire!
Woods and groves are of thy dressing;
Hill and dale doth boast thy blessing.
Thus we salute thee with our early song,
And welcome thee, and wish thee long."
-  John Milton, Song on a May Morning, 1660 

 

Perennials for Every Purpose: Choose the Right Plants for Your Conditions, Your Garden, and Your Taste by Larry Hodgson
Grasses: Versatile Partners for Uncommon Garden Design Nancy J. Ondra
Designer Plant Combinations: 105 Stunning Gardens Using Six Plants or Fewer by Scott Calhoun
The Perennial Care Manual: A Plant-by-Plant Guide: What to Do and When to Do It by Nancy J. Ondra
Perennial Combinations: Stunning Combinations That Make Your Garden Look Fantastic Right from the Start by C. Colston Burrell
Perennials for Every Purpose: Choose the Right Plants for Your Conditions, Your Garden, and Your Taste by Larry Hodgson 

 

"Tossing his mane of snows in wildest eddies and tangles,
Lion-like March cometh in, hoarse, with tempestuous breath,
Through all the moaning chimneys, and 'thwart all the hollows and angles
Round the shuddering house, threating of winter and death.

But in my heart I feel the life of the wood and the meadow
Thrilling the pulses that own kindred with fibers that lift
Bud and blade to the sunward, within the inscrutable shadow,
Deep in the oak's chill core, under the gathering drift.

Nay, to earth's life in mine some prescience, or dream, or desire
(How shall I name it aright?) comes for a moment and goes--
Rapture of life ineffable, perfect--as if in the brier,
Leafless there by my door, trembled a sense of the rose."
-  William Dean Howell, Earliest Spring

 

"Jacaranda blue
crowns treetops in roadside show--
Springtime anew"
-  Victor Gendrano, Haiku and Senryu Harvests

 

"The seasons, like greater tides, ebb and flow across the continents.  Spring advances up the United States at the average rate of about fifteen miles a day.  It ascends mountainsides at the rate of about a hundred feet a day.  It sweeps ahead like a flood of water, racing down the long valleys, creeping up hillsides in a rising tide.  Most of us, like the man who lives on the bank of a river and watches the stream flow by, see only one phase of the movement of spring.  Each year the season advances toward us out of the south, sweeps around us, goes flooding away to the north."
-  Edwin Way Teale, North With the Spring 

 

"Through primrose tufts, in that green bower,
The periwinkle trails its wreath;
And 'tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes. The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure;
But the least motion which they made,
It seemed a thrill of pleasure. The budding twigs spread out their fan,
To catch the breezy air;
And I must think, do all I can
That there was pleasure there. If this belief from heaven be sent,
If such be Nature's holy plan,
Have I not reason to lament
What man has made of man?"
-  William Wordsworth, Lines Written in Early Spring 

 

"Mindful of you the sodden earth in spring,
And all the flowers that in the springtime grow,
And dusty roads, and thistles, and the slow
Rising of the round moon, all throats that sing
The summer through, and each departing wing,
And all the nests that the bared branches show,
And all winds that in any weather blow,
And all the storms that the four seasons bring.

You go no more on your exultant feet
Up paths that only mist and morning knew,
Or watch the wind, or listen to the beat
Of a bird's wings too high in air to view,—
But you were something more than young and sweet
And fair,—and the long year remembers you."
-  Edna St. Vincent Millay, Mindful of You the Sodden Earth in Spring

 

"In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt."
-  Margaret Atwood 

 

"Walking on willow tree roads by a river dappled
with peach blossoms,
I look for spring light, but am everywhere lost.
Birds fly up and scatter floating catkins.
A ponderous wave of flowers sags the branches."
-  Wang Wei, 699-761, Going to the Country in the Spring 

 

"A something in a summer's Day
As slow her flambeaux burn away
Which solemnizes me.

A something in a summer's noon --
A depth -- an Azure -- a perfume --
Transcending ecstasy.

And still within a summer's night
A something so transporting bright
I clap my hands to see --

Then veil my too inspecting face
Lets such a subtle -- shimmering grace
Flutter too far for me --

The wizard fingers never rest --
The purple brook within the breast
Still chafes it narrow bed --

Still rears the East her amber Flag --
Guides still the sun along the Crag
His Caravan of Red --

So looking on -- the night -- the morn
Conclude the wonder gay --
And I meet, coming thro' the dews
Another summer's Day!"
-  Emily Dickinson, A Something in a Summer's Day

 

"Maia is the Oscan Earth-Goddess, and an ancient Roman Goddess of springtime, warmth, and increase. She causes the plants to grow through Her gentle heat, and the month of May is probably named for Her. Her name means "She Who is Great", and is related to Oscan mais and Latin majus, both of which mean "more". She is also called Maia Maiestas, "Maia the Majestic", which is essentially a doubling of Her name to indicate Her power, as both "Maia" and "Maiestas" have their roots in latin magnus, "great or powerful". She was honored by the Romans on the 1st and 15th of May, and at the Volcanalia of August 23rd, the holiday of Her sometimes husband, the Fire-God Vulcan.  She seems to have been paired with Vulcan because they were both considered Deities of heat: through the increasing warmth of Maia's spring season flowers and plants sprouted and grew; while Vulcan's stronger summer heat brought the fruits to ripeness. In a later period, Maia was confused with a Greek Goddess of the same name. This Maia (whose name in Greek can take such various meanings as "midwife", "female doctor", "good mother", "foster mother", or "aunty") was a nymph and the mother of Hermes, the trickster God of merchants, travellers, and liars; She was also said to have been the eldest and most beautiful of the seven sisters who formed the constellation of the Pleiades, whose heliacal rising (meaning when the constellation is just visible in the east before the sun rises) signalled the beginning of summer. Through this association the Roman Maia became the mother of Mercury, and Her festival on the Ides of May (the 15th) coincided with the festival commemorating the date of the dedication of His temple on the Aventine."
Maia Maiestas, Goddess of Spring

 

"Gardening imparts an organic perspective on the passage of time." 
-  William Cowper 

 

"Cloud-topped and splendid, dominating all
The little lesser hills which compass thee,
Thou standest, bright with April's buoyancy,
Yet holding Winter in some shaded wall
Of stern, steep rock; and startled by the call
Of Spring, thy trees flush with expectancy
And cast a cloud of crimson, silently,
Above thy snowy crevices where fall
Pale shrivelled oak leaves, while the snow beneath
Melts at their phantom touch. Another year
Is quick with import. Such each year has been.
Unmoved thou watchest all, and all bequeath
Some jewel to thy diadem of power,
Thou pledge of greater majesty unseen."
-  Amy Lowell, Monadnock in Early Spring

 

"Flower god, god of the spring, beautiful, bountiful,
Cold-dyed shield in the sky, lover of versicles,
Here I wander in April
Cold, grey-headed; and still to my
Heart, Spring comes with a bound,
Spring the deliverer,
Spring, song-leader in woods, chorally resonant;
Spring, flower-planter in meadows,
Child-conductor in willowy
Fields deep dotted with bloom, daisies and crocuses:
Here that child from his heart drinks of eternity:
O child, happy are children!
She still smiles on their innocence,
She, dear mother in God, fostering violets,
Fills earth full of her scents, voices and violins:
Thus one cunning in music
Wakes old chords in the memory:
Thus fair earth in the Spring leads her performances.
One more touch of the bow, smell of the virginal
Green - one more, and my bosom
Feels new life with an ecstasy."
-  Robert Louis Stevenson, Flower God, God of the Spring 

 

"Now that the winter's gone, the earth hath lost
Her snow-white robes, and now no more the frost
Candies the grass, or casts an icy cream
Upon the silver lake or crystal stream;
But the warm sun thaws the benumbed earth,
And makes it tender; gives a sacred birth
To the dead swallow; wakes in hollow tree
The drowsy cuckoo and the humble-bee.
Now do a choir of chirping minstrels bring
In triumph to the world the youthful spring."
-  Thomas Carew, The Spring, 1630    

 

"Spring, the sweet Spring, is the year's pleasant king;
Then blooms each thing, then maids dance in a ring,
Cold doth not sting, the pretty birds do sing--
   Cuckoo, jug-jug, pu-we, to-witta-woo!

The palm and may make country houses gay,
Lambs frisk and play, the shepherds pipe all day,
And we hear aye birds tune this merry lay--
   Cuckoo, jug-jug, pu-we, to-witta-woo!

The fields breathe sweet, the daisies kiss our feet,
Young lovers meet, old wives a-sunning sit,
In every street these tunes our ears do greet--
   Cuckoo, jug-jug, pu-we, to-witta-woo!
   Spring, the sweet Spring!"
-  Thomas Nashe, Spring, 1590

 

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"I'm glad I am alive, to see and feel
The full deliciousness of this bright day,
That's like a heart with nothing to conceal;
The young leaves scarcely trembling; the blue-grey
Rimming the cloudless ether far away;
Brairds, hedges, shadows; mountains that reveal
Soft sapphire; this great floor of polished steel
Spread out amidst the landmarks of the bay.

I stoop in sunshine to our circling net
From the black gunwale; tend these milky kine
Up their rough path; sit by yon cottage-door
Plying the diligent thread; take wings and soar--
O hark how with the season's laureate
Joy culminates in song! If such a song were mine!"
-  William Allingham, On a Forenoon of Spring

 

Flower by Christopher Beane
Flowers and Fables: A Welsh Herbal by Jocelyne Lawton
The Flower Gardener's Bible: Time-Tested Techniques, Creative Designs, and Perfect Plants for Colorful Gardens by Nancy Hill.
The Gardener's A-Z Guide to Growing Flowers from Seed to Bloom: 576 Annuals, Perennials, and Bulbs in Full Color by Eileen Powell 

 

"What is so sweet and dear
As a prosperous morn in May,
The confident prime of the day,
And the dauntless youth of the year,
When nothing that asks for bliss,
Asking aright, is denied,
And half of the world a bridegroom is,
And half of the world a bride?"
-  William Watson, Ode in May, 1880

 

"You can always tell it's April 
By the sound of falling rain 
That mystic, mournful music 
As it trickles down the drain.  We're told we should be thankful 
For the kiss of April showers 
As it washes all the grass clean 
And prepares the soil for flowers.  There's another side to April 
Which doesn't bode us good, 
When that mini, manic maelstrom 
Turns the lawn to liquid mud." 
-  Thomas Vaughan Jones, O' To Be in April

 

"Sweet April showers
Do spring May flowers."
-  Thomas Tusser, A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry, 1557

 

 

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The Spirit of Gardening Website

Over 3,800 Quotations, Poems, Sayings, Quips, One-Liners, Clichés, Quotes, and Insights
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       From January 1, 1999 through March 1, 2011
This webpage has been online since June 1999
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