Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience. –Ralph Waldo Emerson
Among my perennials, several plants worry me each spring by not showing up on time.
That is, they don’t show up when I think they should; I fret that they must have frozen during the winter and won’t be returning at all.
So when one of the tardy ones shoots up green leaves, I rejoice over finding the lost sheep of the garden.
A few days ago, on the summer solstice, I celebrated new growth–finally–of the Yellow Butterfly Vine (mascagnia macroptera), which I had planted last fall. It really looked as though the freezes of winter had killed it. It is supposed to bloom from May to September, so showing up on June 21st is arriving a bit late to the party.
Here in the Texas Hill Country, I’m pushing the northern limits of Pride of Barbados (caesalpinia pulcherrima). I’m always afraid this one won’t survive the winter; it may die in temps below 18 degrees F. Its lovely leaves started poking up through the soil on May 27th this year, a bit later than its expected mid-spring appearance.
For the same reason, I’m perennially (pun intended) concerned about the Esperanzas (tecoma stans), whose common name means “hope” in Spanish. They always arrive later than their neighbors, and I’ve gradually learned to expect this from them, much like knowing certain friends usually show up ten minutes later than an agreed-upon time.
And as I would human friends, I always forgive them their tardiness because I love their unique beauty and the name esperanza. They were late this spring, but now, as shown in the photos at top and below, they’re blooming with the vigor which illustrates the reason for their other common name of Yellow Bells.
Isn’t that the way with hope? When it seems too late for hope to bloom, that’s when its leaves show beneath our feet.
I assume it’s following the pace of nature.
Complete the following: When it seems like it’s just too late ________________.
In what ways do you have to adjust your expectations of the pace of things?