If you're a gardener, you understand what I mean when I say Zone 3 is finally awake.
If you're not a gardener, Zones refer to the coldest extreme of a climate and the corresponding hardiness required by plants to survive that cold. In reference to North America, Zone 1 starts at the North Pole. Here in Zone 3, plants have to tolerate -40C (same as -40F).
I tried for many years to be a Zone 3 gardener.
I was defeated.
This sweet little harbinger of Spring is one of only a few surviving remnants of my early attempts to conquer this climate in pursuit of a lush and bountiful English Cottage garden. Among countless other ill-fated species - everything from foxglove to lavender - I planted 100 of these muscari bulbs. (See? I even remember the Latin term for "grape hyacinth".) If you drove by my house today you'd be hard pressed to believe a gardener had ever lived here, except for this one week in May when these tiny clusters of periwinkle blue pop up to say, "Congratulations, you survived another Canadian winter!"
My muscari forgive me every year for my horticultural failings. I feel like they're reassuring me that not everyone is born to garden, but they appreciate how hard I tried and continue to reward me for my efforts, however misguided they may have been.
If you garden - in any zone - you have my deepest admiration and respect.
If you have an English Cottage garden, please consider inviting me over for a cup of tea some time. ;)