We bought our house in February 2006, just months after BigBrother was born. When Spring rolled around that year, my husband’s Mother and (paternal) Grandmother helped me get some flowers started by giving me some of their flowers to transplant. We chose to place some day lilies along our back fence row. These particular flowers were actually FireDad’s (paternal-paternal) Great-Grandmother’s and I felt honored to have them growing on our property.
They bloomed just fine in 2006, having transplanted them just before they opened. I was so proud of their blooms, their color. You know, even though I had little to do with growing them or caring for them that first year. I was still proud. Beautiful flowers! Growing! In my very own yard!
Then came 2007. We watched them spring up in early Spring and start their big, leafy growing process. We watched the stalks sprout forth and begin their climb toward the sky. We watched the buds appear, the orange not yet visible under the thick, protective green skin. And then, just as we watched them appear, we watched them start to disappear. Apparently both deer and birds find day lily buds to be a fantastically yummy treat. Eventually, on the four lilies we had in the yard at that point, we were down to one very last bud… and I watched a neighbor girl pick it off. I was so sad. Absolutely no lilies made it to bloom in 2007. I was pregnant and overemotional as it was; I just wanted some beautiful orange flowers in my backyard.
Then came 2008. While I had spoken to the offending child’s mother, that didn’t stop the deer from snacking on them in the middle of the night. The deer were very forward and not skittish last year, walking into our yard not just in the middle of the night but in the hours of dusk and twilight. Once again, I sat at our dining room table and stared at one remaining bud. That poor little soul was captured by a bird when I turned my head. And, for the second year in a row, none of my lilies made it to bloom.
I felt like a flower failure even though I faithfully watered and trimmed and cared for those plants.
And now, it’s 2009. AND I HAVE LILIES!
I haven’t seen the deer this year. I’m hoping they have moved on to another flower garden this year. The birds, despite still flying around in large number, seem to be leaving them alone. Maybe they, too, are getting their fill in a neighbor’s patch of day lilies. I don’t know. But I do know that I have lilies. And I’m thrilled beyond measure. We transplanted three more groups this year, now totaling seven large groups of lilies along our fence row. As I walked past the back door last week, rain drizzling and clouds covering, a flash of orange caught my eye. I honestly stopped in my tracks, walked backward in my dining room and squealed with delight. Lilies! In my yard! I found my camera and ran outside, ignoring the drizzle that made my hair frizz for the rest of the day. The results are lovely.
I think flowers look the best in the rain, really.
I don’t know what changed this year. I do think the absence of too-friendly deer has been beneficial to growth and blooming. When the neighbor kids moved, I’m sure that didn’t hurt their chances either. Maybe the fact that our backyard-neighbors no longer put feed in their bird feeder has limited the number of birds flying through the yards, raising the chances that one or twelve won’t each bite off a yummy lily bloom. Whatever the case, I am so happy that they bloomed this year. They should reach full bloom sometime this week (if it remains warm, unlike last week). I would expect more pictures.
Hooray for lilies! (That bloom!)