Emily's Garden
Crocus   | Trailing Arbutus   | Spring Beauty   | Hepatica   | Sweet White Violet
  Trout Lily |   Anemone |   Indian Pipe

Emily Dickinson’s quiet life in 19th century Amherst, Massachusetts was described by a friend as follows: “Her events were the coming of a bird; the bursting of a chrysalis….the wondering opening on the new world of every little flower.” Spring wildflowers that inspired Dickinson are pictured below and on pages that follow.

Crocus

Although native to southern Europe and Asia, Crocuses are nowhere more treasured than in New England. While not themselves wildflowers, the first crocuses are welcome heralds.

“Spring’s first conviction,” Emily Dickinson called them.

“A Light exists in Spring
Not present on the Year
At any other period –
When March is scarcely here

A Color stands abroad
On Solitary Fields
That Science cannot overtake
But Human Nature feels….” E.D.

Trailing Arbutus

Legend has it that flowers of the arbutus heartened the Pilgrims after their first cruel winter on the New England coast. The scientific name, Epigaea repens, means “creeping upon the earth,” which describes its trailing habit.

Emily Dickinson knew it as

“Dear to the Moss –
Known to the Knoll—
Next to the Robin
In every human Soul…” E.D.

Spring Beauty

To many, this delicate flower distills the essence of bright April mornings, when according to Emily Dickinson,

“None stir abroad without a cordial interview with God.”

 
Crocus   | Trailing Arbutus   | Spring Beauty   | Hepatica   | Sweet White Violet
  Trout Lily |   Anemone |   Indian Pipe


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