The common colours of a Warwickshire spring are white and yellow. In our gardens, we may strive to bring in other colours: deep blues of Anemone blanda, purples of crocuses, smoky pinks of Ribes and Pulsatilla. This morning, the first scarlet flower of a Helianthemum opened in my garden. Out in the hedgerows and meadows, however, there aren’t many flowers that aren’t white and yellow: the blackthorn is still brilliant in uncut hedges. As the daffodils go over, yellow cowslips are coming into flower, the first dandelions and buttercups.
At Sun Rising, evidence is creeping in that spring is beginning to settle into the idea of summer ahead. The deep violet bells of snakeshead fritillaries are at their prime. The very first bluebells are starting to reveal tentative flowers. What takes my breath away though, and without any doubt, is the crab apple blossom.
To me it is the perfect pink. There’s no hint of artificial pink, no plastic or Disney. This is nature’s pink, an English pink: the softest touch of pink. In contrast, its quiet glows against the grey-brown bark of the tree, still leafless. Some crab apples are almost thorny, giving yet another balance to its beautiful, tender elegance.
For those who can’t visit Sun Rising at the moment, here’s a photograph of just one of the crab apples in flower. You can see the roundhouse behind it. Breathe in the peace of it, and all the fruitfulness of summer about which each little flower is whispering.