The colors of “Mud Season”

The colors of “Mud Season”

There is a fifth unofficial season here in Southern New England, between the melting of the last snow pile and the brilliant yellow bloom of the Forsythia, that tests the patience of a gardener. The early spring rains and winter’s runoff create a palate of blurred, soggy, squishy, earth tones, which those who speak without poetic license simply call mud. But there is color to be found for those who would look, simple pleasures that can soothe the impatient soul. Here are a few such instances, may they warm your hearts and ready your spirit for the season to come!

Early spring is an excellent time to view and enjoy the exfoliating bark of Japanese Stewartia (Stewartia pseudocamellia).


I pass by this small meadow quite often, and find myself lost in it’s simple beauty. Since last summer this grass has stood upright through wind rain and heavy snow. And even though it’s of the “Mud Season” color scheme, I find it quite beautiful here in April. And many thanks to the town maintenance department for not mowing the entire patch of land!



Korean Rhododendron (Rhododendron mucronulatum) is the earliest flowering Rhodie in this area. This specimen has had a few off years of late, but is making up for it in 2013. It’s clean pink blooms light up the landscape.



And , it would be impossible to write this post without the Crocus. This grouping has been slowly coming around. For many of our past 16 years here there has been only the dark grassy-green foliage to look at, but it appears that will change in the future!



What popping in your garden? I’d love to hear about the colors of your “Mud Season”!