Shortly after Mother’s Day, I bought a gardenia bush bearing a label that promised it not only easy to care for, but winter hardy.
I was dubious.
I don’t know about the winter hardiness yet, but I plopped the bush in the ground and we were promptly hit with hazy, hot and humid weather. Humid though it was, we missed all the pop-up thunderstorms. The poor thing roasted. It turned yellow and I was sure it was dying a gruesome death.
Eventually the rain arrived and outdid itself. When I walk in the garden there is a clearly audible squishing and sucking sound.
While surveying what is slowly turning into an unplanned pond, I was surprised to find the yellow bits were buds forming.
The gardenia is blooming. So far, just one perfect flower. Thus far the gardenia has survived scorching and drowning.
I picked that one perfect flower and the fragrance has scented this entire room to the point that it’s almost overwhelming.
The bush looks ready to burst with multiple blooms. There are at least 30 buds, some still tightly closed and other beginning to unfurl.
If the gods favor me, it will stop raining soon, my yard will cease to be a mud bog, the heatwave will break and I’ll be able to sit outside and enjoy the blooming.
I have high hopes of spending an evening in the garden drunk on one of nature’s most glorious scents.