A Good Home

A Stream, Flower Buds and Birdsong


Blog Photo - Stream Med

Not sure if this is the spring thaw or just the result of rain, but you should hear the rushing sound the stream makes as it wends its way through our small valley!

Blog Photo - Stream closest

Then there are the birds, which surprised me several days ago: their singing was so loud, I could hear it through my closed kitchen window. Bravo, birds!

On the inside ledge of that same kitchen window, is this orchid.

Blog Photo - Orchid stalk

Once again, it’s sending up a stalk (aka a “spike”) which will bear colourful pink blooms.

Don’t ask me how it does this.

The plant fell from its perch a year or so ago, and its pot, roots and leaves were all broken.

Blog Photo - Orchid roots

I shoved it into a different pot, but it’s almost bereft of potting soil and gets watered only when I remember. The roots are few and very straggly. And yet, the plant keeps blooming and its new leaves are the healthiest of any in the house (other than that damaged leaf which held on.)

If orchids could talk, this one would probably say: “You fall, you get damaged, but you get up and keep blooming — in spite of the challenges.” 

Blog Photo - Orchid pink on ledge

Meanwhile, a gift orchid from Felicity and Susan, leaders of the Spirit of the Hills Festival of the Arts last fall, has already put out one new set of blooms and now has buds again.

Blog Photo - Orchid flower and new buds

Are these all signs of an early spring?

It’s February in Ontario, Canada. I know that our spring — the real thing, not the calendar date — shows up around April. But a person can hope — right?

Meanwhile, the orchids are blooming, the stream is rushing and the birds are singing. I am thankful.


Dedicated to two bloggers who often write about streams, rivers and other living water:

Brad of Writing to Freedom and Allen of New Hampshire Garden Solutions.

56 thoughts on “A Stream, Flower Buds and Birdsong”

  1. Beautiful orchid! Our spring had been put on hold as we experience a storm tonight with freezing temperatures and snow! Not Irish weather at all!

    1. Aaargh! I meant to dedicate this post to you and Allen of New Hampshire gardens because you two love streams and rivers and bodies of water. Gonna go back and do it now! Thanks for the accidental reminder!

  2. Wonderful post Cynthia. I also have an orchid that looks a little sad. I keep checking it for a stalk but nope. It bloomed last year in April so I guess I am getting impatient. Your other orchid is gorgeous.

    1. Thank you. It is peaceful and I can hardly wait for spring! The valley has many wild dogwood and other cream-coloured blooms in May. They are a sight to behold.

  3. The orchids are beautiful, Cynthia! I was just thinking about an old friend (she passed away in January this year) this morning; she had a phalaenopsis orchid that was given to her by the owner of a commercial greenhouse she happened to be visiting. That plant had fallen to the floor some time previously, and was left there, shriveling up and dying. She took it home, nursed it back to health and it provided here with blooms for years.

    I can hear the water from the stream rushing by your valley! I love the rippling sound of water muscling its way across the land. Spring seems to have a different working calendar for different species, with some ahead and some after the official calendar date. I’m one of those who wants it to come early! 🙂

    1. Me too, Lavinia. I am truly looking forward to it, after a very snowy winter. Your friend must have had deep faith in the rebirth of plants! I’m glad it rebloomed for her.

  4. Thank you Cynthia, for the mention. That’s a beautiful orchid, and if you can get it to bloom every year then you’re doing something very right. I used to have a house with so many plants in it I used to tell visitors they should have brought a machete, but never could I get an orchid to bloom.
    Spring is coming early this year down here I think, so maybe you’ll get an early spring as well.

  5. Hope sings throughout this post, from the birds to springs to orchids to your own voice! I have two orchids that my son brought in January that are beautiful. I keep them by an east window and water them once a week with only rainwater. So far so good! I have never tried to grow them so I am impressed with the one that fell down and got up! May spring come early for you! It has arrived here as it was 83 degrees today and sunny for a change.

    1. I love the way you wrote that, Jo Nell. “Hope sings throughout this post….” I didn’t realize it till your reply came in, and you made me reread the whole thing and agree, heartily! Thanks for your lovely reply. And I suspect you knew that was me talking to myself through the orchid. A friend immediately sussed it out! (Yikes, you can’t trust friends….)

  6. I’m thrilled that I’m seeing robins all over the place.I can’ wait for spring. And I’ve been nursing an orchid for over a year now, but I’m not sure its going to bloom.Waiting for time to tell 🙂

  7. Beautiful! And yes, a person can hope. Our spring comes right around the same time as yours does.

      1. It’s not here yet, that’s for sure. A foot of snow is predicted for Wednesday. March in Maine. Sigh.

  8. Beautiful orchids indeed. We also are continually amazed that just when we think an orchid plant has bit the dust we can find a tiny new bare stem starting its march towards the light. It’s a miracle, especially in the middle of winter. Regarding an early spring, it’s probably playing with us. Nice to have the colour of the orchids to sooth our impatient souls for a while longer! 🙂

    1. Hi Jane: Well, we’re supposed to have snow tonight and tomorrow, so Nature is probably playing a prank, but the birds and I have enjoyed the spring weather.

  9. An echo goes from my heart – I too am so encouraged by the signs of spring I have seen already – so even though at the moment it’s blowing a blizzard again here – Spring is on it’s way. You made it live in this post – thank you

  10. I know what you mean about orchids! I have three and I think their patterns are almost miraculous. Once I brought one to a plant nursery because I was sure it was dead. The salesperson told me it was not dead at all, it was in a normal part of its cycle. Today,that orchid is standing tall and filled with white petals.

  11. My orchid is blooming, too, against all odds! And we’re hearing the honking of Canada geese as they head your way and the sap is running . . . spring can’t be far behind, Cynthia!

  12. Winter and Spring continue the Merry-Go-Round here, with 25F and high winds one day, and 40F to 60F the next. More bulb are blooming though. I have about half of next year’s wood cut and am preparing to replant the area which I just cleared with smaller trees. No end to gardening, even on the tree-sized level. -Oscar
    P.S. our seasonal streams are bubbling with fresh, clear water too.

  13. Spring is in the air here too, Cynthia, and more than welcome after a drab winter. It’s nice to see the snow giving way to greenery and the quiet to happy birdsong. Saturday was a gorgeous day which we spent in the garden. So good to feel the sun again…my energy is coming back, hooray 🙂

  14. The loud birds thing … over here (UK) I tend to notice them singing a lot louder in early January. It’s just another wonderful thing about January. Winter may still be with us but that’s the point when the green shoots of bulbs appear and I start to feel as if we’ve turned the corner. It isn’t always like that of course, we’ve just had some freezing weather! I was wearing skiing trousers and snow boots all last week. This week the long johns are off and the daffs seem unfazed despite their five day hibernation under the snow.

    Here’s hoping your early spring sticks or that there’s not too much of a wag in winter’s tale if it doesn’t.



  15. Hu Cynthia, the snow has melted where we are in the midlands of England now, and I smiled widely at your orchids, They are amazing plants aren’t they, I too have several of them and one has two strong shoots bursting to bud again. While the other two are not showing any signs. I love their flowers and how they brighten us up and last and last.

    Hoping Spring really is going to get going again. Its been a long winter..
    Loved your photos and nothing sweeter than the sound of running water along with birdsong .
    have a Wonderful week.
    Sue 🙂

  16. Those sounds are all spring-like to me! Can’t wait- com oooonnnnnn, spring!
    I am always amazed at the tough spirits of some plants – it’s why I tend to keep those type around. I have a running joke – they live by their wits, because it’s not thanks to my nurturing efforts! (I try, but my thumb, alas, is not green.)

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