People often refer to them as Lenten Roses and it’s easy to see why. They tend to bloom during Lent, and their flowers look a lot like and old fashioned rose with a single layer of petals. They are also call “hellebores” and belong to a family of evergreen plants, many of which are poisonous. In fact, the name “hellebore” comes from the ancient Greek. “Helle-” which means “to injure” and “-bore” which means “food”.  Their seemingly fragile flowers tempt us into thinking Michigan’s fickle springs will break these lovely plants, but even four inches of snow that bends the hellebores to the ground can’t defeat them. 


Though snow weighed down this hellebore, it became a lovely flower just a week later.

This hellebore, a transplant from a friend and was the bud that endured four inches of wet snow.

Spring in Michigan wanders in between sunlit days and cruel frosts that injure my hopes of warmth.  Yesterday the sun warmed the garden and me.  But there were frost warnings last night and today it is cold and windy.  Still, the hellebores nod. 
They aren’t the only ones.

Often the old magnolia in the front garden doesn’t get to keep its blooms because rain, wind, or a frost can knock down or kill the flowers. So far gets to stay dressed in its porcelain-like blooms.

The old cherry tree in the lower garden stands guard over a hosta bed. When there is a late frost, this old girl doesn’t produce fruit. So far, frost hasn’t nipped her potential for cherries.

Look what is budding out, way earlier than I expected. This is a French lilac, but its name escapes me, and so does the location of the book I wrote it down..

Here’s the magnolia as seen from the street.

Every time I pass a large garden center or Lowes, I have to stop and look at their patio umbrellas. It would be nice to have some shade in this little seating area. In a month the Dutchman’s Pipe will have formed its green wall of very aggressive vines.

Looking eat in the Secret Garden. I love the Japanese maple. I love my Secret Garden. I know its name is a cliche, but it’s what I wanted to create.

I have figured out that this hosta has to be Fire Island, though I don’t remember buying it or planting it. But, what a beauty!

It is easy for me to fall in love with the deep pink hellebores, but this flower, too, is beautiful.

Every spring I would pass redbud trees in bloom and wished I’d had one. And now I do, in the Secret Garden.