St. Simeon, St. Bridget, and my sweet flower.

daphne-eve-of-presentation-17Today was the first time that the daphne scent got my attention all on its own, as I came back from errands and was unlocking my front door. Before today, I had to kneel down on the mulch and get my nose right up to it, but now there are more blooms, and they are more fully opened. If the weather warms up a bit that should make them even more noticeable.

This highly aromatic plant was introduced to me by a neighbor when I was in labor of childbirth with my daughter Pippin – Gayle brought me a vase of the flowers that were in bloom then, around Valentine’s Day, and the sweetness in the air highlighted the divine atmosphere that I always feel when we are waiting to meet a new baby.

I always understood that daphne is hard to grow in our area. I don’t remember why that is, but I never attempted it. Then last summer Landscape Lady suggested it for this spot in my front garden, and I was thrilled at the possibility. Originally we thought to have a whole row of them under the living room window, but her fellow designer cautioned against that much investment in a risky business, so I just have the one. And it is healthy and making lots of flowers so far!

I’m posting it here in honor of Saint Bridget of Ireland, whose feast this is, but also for the Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple, which is tonight/tomorrow — and also for dear Saint Simeon who took Jesus in his arms and knew immediately that He was the Christ. The Lord had told Simeon that he would not die until he had seen The Lord’s Anointed, so as he was cradling his infant Savior he said, “Lord, now let Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word, for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people: a Light to enlighten the Gentiles, and the glory of Thy people Israel.”

It’s one of my favorite feast days.

11 thoughts on “St. Simeon, St. Bridget, and my sweet flower.

  1. I suspect the daphne is difficult to grow in your area because it’s not a native. I’d never heard of them, so I did some looking, and found they’re native to China. I certainly can appreciate the pleasure of its scent, though. I came upon some gardenia bushes in full bloom on Monday, and was reminded again how much I enjoy their scent. Of course, they’re not native, either. It makes me wonder if there are some pleasantly scented natives that could serve as substitutes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My area of the country is a happy home to many many non-native species. For example, plants that are native to Australia often do well in our xeriscapes. And where I am, anything “Mediterranean” will thrive. The Sunset Western Garden Book, which is like our gardening bible, says that daphnes are more “temperamental” in California than in the Northwest.

      They seem to be picky about water, and that may be part of the reason. I just read this: “…all Daphnes require well amended and fast draining soil that retains enough water to prevent it from drying out completely, semi shade and a cover of mulch over their roots. During the dry season water infrequently, as less water increases flowering next spring.”

      Mine is in a spot that will not be “semi shade” in the summer, so we’ll see how she copes. May God bless her!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I am not familiar with this plant. Its leaves look somewhat like the laurel family, but I would have to do some research that present time is not allowing. But it certainly is pretty, and I do so want to smell its sweetness.

    I marvel at the story of Simeon every single time I hear or read it!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oooh, Gretchen you remind me that I caught my first whiff of it this week, too! On Monday evening I think it was, from my scooter, and I was on the fly somewhere and caught the swiftest, but most unmistakeable delight of it. What a lovely association you make with it: your own child, the child Jesus and St Brigid – wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

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