Spring is arriving with reminders to bloom where we’re planted and scatter a few seeds.
The cherry blossoms in Washington, DC were a gift from a foreign county, yet they have become an iconic symbol of where they were planted. The seeds they scatter may not be allowed to grow where they fall, but the trees do seed sightseers’ dollars into the economy.
The Texas fields will soon be blanketed in bluebonnets.
Acres and acres of reflected blue sky.
In 1901, there was a very heated debate about naming a state flower. Cotton blooms and prickly pear cactus blossoms were the hot contenders. However, a very active group of determined women convinced the legislators that the Lupinus subcarnosus was much more attractive. Not only would the plants not puncture a close observer, the tiny blossoms are a nod to the bonnets pioneer women wore to shield themselves from the sun. The seeds the blossoms scatter as they fade germinate in the fall and bloom where they were planted the next spring.
Doing Double Duty
Across the country, fields and hillsides abounding in daffodils become drive-by destinations and Instagram pics. Daffodils heartily bloom where they are planted. On the other hand, what comes next for daffodils is different.
We usually think of daffodils spreading their beauty by producing new bulbs attached to the original one. The tiny new bulbs then grow to become clones, looking exactly like the original plant.
If you look closely inside the daffodil cup, however, you’ll see long stems with seedheads at the top. After they scatter and sink into the ground, those seeds take several years to flower. Only then will you really know what the outcome of the seeded newcomer will be. If the parent was a hybrid flower, the new plant may be quite different.
Double duty daffodils. They create new growth in two ways and with sometimes surprising results.
There are lessons in the Spring flowers, even in those beyond cherry trees, bluebonnets and daffodils. Bloom. Seed. Take root. Maybe do double duty with unexpected results.