In a vase on Monday: snowdrops


for the first day of spring. . .

“Bouquet of lilies of the plain of Kosovo (snowdrops) . . . on a farm table — Lipljan, Kosovo, (in May, actually) 1913, by Auguste Léon, via Archives of the Planet Collection – Albert Kahn Museum /Départment of Hauts-de-Seine.

This autochrome is one of about 72,000 that were commissioned and then archived by Albert Kahn, a wealthy French banker who was committed to the ideal of universal peace and believed that “knowledge of foreign cultures encourages respect and peaceful relations between nations.”* He was also acutely aware that the 20th century was going to bring rapid material change to the world.

Accordingly, from 1909 to 1931, Kahn sent thirteen photographers and filmmakers to 50 countries “to fix, once and for all, aspects, practices, and modes of human activity whose fatal disappearance is no longer ‘a matter of time.'”†  The resulting collection is called Archives de la Planète and now resides in its own museum at Kahn’s old suburban estate at Boulogne-Billancourt, just west of Paris. Since June 2016, the archive has also been available for viewing online here.

I wasn’t able to make my own flower arrangement this week for the Monday meme “In a vase on Monday,”‘ but to see what other garden bloggers have created today, please visit host Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.


*Collections Albert Kahn website. Also, the above photo (A 1902) is © Collection Archives de la Planète – Musée Albert-Kahn and used under its terms, here.
†words of Albert Kahn, 1912.

GB Bloom Day: snow day

26 March 2016 Bloom Day, Stuttgart, enclos*ure

Because I haven’t really been gardening here in Stuttgart, I decided that for this year’s Bloom Days, I would make a record of the flowers of the display garden of the 18th century Spielhaus at the Exotic Garden of the University of Hohenheim, which is close to our neighborhood. 

Unfortunately, when I visited this afternoon it was snowing hard, and I didn’t take as many pictures as I would have liked. I may have to try again later this week.

Please click on any thumbnail in the gallery below to scroll through larger images. And to see what’s blooming today for other garden bloggers, visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens.

You must stand still; and then. . . you will hear the infinite march of buds faintly roaring.

Karel Capek [on the coming of spring], from The Gardener’s Year

Vintage landscape: daffodils

Middleburg, Va., flower show, 1931, Library of CongressMiddleburg Flower Show, Middleburg, Virginia, April 1931, by Frances Benjamin Johnston, via Carnegie Survey of the Architecture of the South, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Right now, here in Stuttgart, a few daffodils have poked up from our front yard. I will probably pick them. I don’t usually like Narcissus in the landscape in early spring — the bright yellow is too much, too soon.  But, like those in the photo above, they look really nice in a vase.

There are also some fat cultivated Dutch hyacinths by our front door. They’re going to get the chop too.

In the fall, for next March and early April, I want to plant snowdrops and snake’s head fritillarias.