It's been raining here in East Tennessee. A lot. It's also been cloudy here most days and that can honestly be depressing. When I'm on campus in Knoxville and need to do homework or get some studying done, having it cloudy and rainy outside makes it easier to be inside. I feel like I'm not missing out as much...but it's also pretty draining.
When I came home this weekend, I was just craving some sunshine. Or at least some time to be outside without having to wear my winter coat and carry an umbrella. Praise the Lord, we got both a break from rain and clouds on this Saturday! After sleeping in, cuddling with the napping cats, and enjoying a slow breakfast and coffee, I wanted to do something creative. In the summer months, it would be easy to run up to the garden and grab whatever flowers I wanted and throw together a bouquet. In early March, it isn't quite that easy. However, I decided to embrace seasonality and forage the property and see if I could make my creative vision come to life.
When I walked up to the garden to take the compost out, I saw some daffodils that had broken stems due to the overwhelming rain we've had lately. I picked them and brought them inside and wondered if I could make them into something more. I knew I wanted to use the daffodils, but other than that, I didn't know what else I would find. Who knew that a walk around the property would lead to this arrangement of happiness!
I used three varieties of narcissus that were planted in the garden as well as lenten rose already planted in the yard. The rest was foraged along the property! I found bright green privet, budding crab apple and dogwood branches, and peach tree blossoms. It was such a nice temperature when I was arranging outside and I saw several glimpses of the sun and blue skies. And, of course, the cats kept me company.
After finishing the arrangement, I worked on weeding bells of Ireland while Mom planted a couple rows over. The wind picked up and the dark clouds rolled in and then I ran around the yard cleaning up before the rain came.
This arrangement is special for a lot of reasons. First of all, absolutely none of the flowers or foliage was sprayed with any kind of harmful chemicals or pesticides. Also, me putting this together had a pretty low carbon footprint. Other than having the narcissus bulbs shipped, the rest of the flowers and greenery were already here on the property growing. The only energy expended here was me running around with my clippers and getting some much-needed fresh air and vitamin D!
Most of the flowers in the US found in grocery stores and florist shops are imported from around the world, about 80% actually. This means it's not certain if the flowers were ethically grown or how many resources (water, fuel, packing materials) were used to transport the flowers from one place to another. Look in to #slowflowers and #theslowflowersmovement if you're interested in learning more about sustainable flowers!
March 20 is the first day of spring! Even though I'm super excited for the next season and all the flowers to come, I'm trying to embrace everything these winter months have to offer too. Most bulbs have to go through a period of cold in order to bloom, so we wouldn't have these beautiful daffodils if we didn't endure some cold winter days first.