OK, so "explosion" may be a rhetorical leap, and the squirrels ate at least one-fourth of the bulbs we planted last fall, but the sudden blossoming of dozens of tulips overnight amazed me. Yesterday afternoon this small garden had about six tulips, and today there are almost four dozen flowers waving back and forth in the strong southwestern winds.
Tulips are among my favorite flowers, and the brief springtime weeks that they hold center stage are a source of visual enjoyment for me bordering on the magical. This is especially refreshing now that my children are past the "ooooo, let's pick the pretty flowers" stage. Years ago the little urchins tended to pick the tulips in bunches the first day they bloomed, and I might come home to find only two or three spindly tulips after the child-harvesting.
THAT is a memory I will not miss when the last of my children leaves home in the next year or so. I fact, I think I will present gifts of tulip bulbs to each of my adult progeny with the hope that their own spring tulip enjoyment gets cut short by the excited little hands of my future grandchildren.