Still all of March to get through before the gardening season can even be contemplated – other, that is, apart from sowing some seeds in a couple of weeks. Lots of snow on the ground.

But there are things for the gardener to appreciate for all that, amongst which are buds with potential. Beside the front door we have a very large Magnolia tree which we planted almost 25 years ago and which a glorious show of enormous flowers in early spring. Just your “basic” Magnolia but no less wonderful for all that. Round the rear of the house is a Magnolia stellata which in the years when the squirrels do not eat the buds is also eagerly awaited. Just now though, buds … there was a bit of snow falling this morning and so the M. stellata bud I chose to share has little winter tuque on its head.

Anything to keep us going until the Snowdrops and the Sanguinaria are flowering.