No year is ever a carbon copy of another.   No day in the life of an animal, including the human one, is a “carbon” copy of another.   Life is filled with errors and the unexpected , for WITHOUT ERRORS OF NATURE, LIFE, WHETHER PLANT OR ANIMAL WOULD NEVER CHANGE.

I am in my 80s….. and began landscape gardening in my neighbor’s sandbox about 75 years ago.   I have many memories of my Twin City, Minnesota winters.

Winter is very long in our Northland….It is equal to all other landscape seasons combined….one half of each year.    When I was a child, adults understood that calendar of winter.   Folks lived  as farm families then when  both male and female of the household became fully aware of the demands of the seasons and  that weight of life, living and working outdoors in  the northern winter for survival.

City folk are rarely outdoors until Spring these days.   In today’s suburban Minnesota there are no alleys to garages for parking cars.   Cars, for good or bad,  are now stored ‘in’ the ‘room’  next to or close to the kitchen……where no one is ever ‘inconvenienced’ by having to go into the  out doors to get to work.   Mosquitoes begin to  bite in Minnesota around late May on the average, often ending all or most visits tiptoeing through the tulips and enjoying the  glories of the new season’s  fragrance, growth,  and color.     Yet, how could they come to  know anything about the glories of a northern spring, when only  a shrub or two and  lawn grass are their primary plants of life decorating, allegedly, ideally,   to inspire them to enter their Eden-like  outdoor world?

In my neighborhood nearly half of the Colorado Blue Spruces planted fifty years ago when the houses were built, are more than half dead… No one seems to notice.

I do believe, however, some Twin City folks nevertheless,  have actually   felt something unusual, something special about this Minnesota Spring.

It started early….in March, perhaps even mid February.  It followed a remarkably  comfortable Winter void of minus twenty something Fahrenheit and five feet of snowbanks.   No killer frosts.   No heat waves.  Not this Spring!

Life in 2016 Twin City’s Minnesota has been glorious….at least for those of us who have planted with Spring, by far the most beautiful season of our northern year,   in mind.

This year  nearly every spring plant woody or no, has been more beautiful in sight  and  form, and holding its beauty longer  than ever in memory.   In my own grounds, PJM Rhododendrons both large and dwarf, Redbuds all, Juddii Fragrant Viburnums, my thirty foot tall flowering crabapple, along with all major and minor Dutch bulbs,  perennials Lenten Rose,  colored ajuga foliage,  mats of  fresh  lily of the valley foliage, sedums,  blooms of vinca, pachysandra,  even sweet woodruff in the sun, blood root, corydalis, white  Arabis rock cress, Darmera,  and on and on….all blooming ‘at once and together’….a sight I have never seen in the four decades I have lived and planted here.

Along side such color, so beautiful yet so often unappreciated, even unnoticed  is the new growth popping out along the evergreen branches of the MOST IMPORTANT PLANTS OF THE MINNESOTA LANDSCAPE GARDEN, THE EVERGREEN CONIFERS, even those beauties the conifer  tamarack which are not evergreen.

Normally the bloom beauty of  our PJM Rhododendrons, our azaleas, any flowering plums or crabapples, black locusts, buckeyes,  magnolias or  Juddii Viburnums lasts at most a week….beginning in earnest  around the middle of May, give or take a week one direction or the other.

Our conifers, so seldom planted, so seldom appreciated for their beauty, for their “ever” green nature,  so rarely doctored when diseased, go unnoticed and so,  go unplanted.   Their  2016 spring growth on my grounds, whether spruce, pine, fir, juniper, arborvitae, hemlock, yew, or chamaecyparis, along with the deciduous larch I cherish, began their spring show almost two weeks ago……Their foliar budding increases every day and will continue to do so until the first week in June this year, not the usual  five days to a week of winsome, attractive, fresh  spring beauty of others of the garden, but  SIX WEEKS OF WINSOME, ATTRACTIVE, FRESH SPRING BEAUTY!

Yet, we in gopherland ignore their place in our Earthly garden life, for we don’t pay too much attention to anything  landscape garden beyond lawn and a ‘bush’ or two.

Note to our clients…..Do not forget our client appreciation day at our Masterpiece Landscaping  Home grounds  is Thursday,  May 26  this year.   Be sure to call us at 952-933-5777 in you have any questions….