my brother, my mom, and her aubretia

When Spring comes round nowadays, it brings a family melancholy with it.  We remember my Dad in early May, celebrating his birthday and mourning his loss sixteen years ago. My brother’s birthday is sandwiched between those two days, now always a bittersweet celebration for him.  And when the Spring aubretia blooms here in the Northwest, I am always reminded of my mother’s rocky mountain garden and the family home. Her aubretia made people stop their cars to take a closer look.  Now I’m the one who will pull over the car so that I can take a closer, contemplative look at the aubretia in a stranger’s garden.  The aubretia bloom doesn’t last long, but when it blossoms, I savor all those happy and melancholy Spring memories it triggers.

13 thoughts on “Aubretia

  1. Tamara

    The picture is gorgeous – purple in front and snow capped mountains behind…. reminds me of my childhood in Canada. So far from that now, our winter is coming in downunder and the grey days of May seem much more appropriate for your melencholy. Prayers for you and your family as you remember those you love.


  2. Robin Post author

    Thanks for the hugs, Kay. Aubretia has such a lovely spring purple. I usually see it in rock gardens or hanging over rock walls, as it likes to grow in nooks and hang over walls. It’s beautiful.

    Thanks, Tamara. I hope you have lots of what I call “sunshine reading” as you move into those grey winter days. I always love immersing myself in a book that takes place in sunnier places on those grey days.


  3. Nan

    Robin, this is a word, a flower which brings the fondest of memories to me. Tom and I were in our twenties, in the Highgate area of London, and we saw this most amazing flower for the first time. We loved it, and I tried to grow some from seed I bought from a mail order British company called Thompson & Morgan. But no luck. I just don’t have the right climate for it.

    I’m sorry for the sadness this time of year brings.

    Does your mom still live in that home?


  4. Robin Post author

    Nan, thanks for your kind thought. Aubretia is a lovely flower, isn’t it? It grows beautifully around here, but not many people recognize it by name.

    Mom, it’s always a tenderhearted time for us, but we have such wonderful memories, don’t we.
    Love you.


  5. Les in NE

    The aubretia looks a bit like my creeping phlox. So delicate and pretty and such a nice splash of early spring color.

    I love those mountains!! Are they the Cascades?

    May is a very difficult time for us, too. Our daughter died on the 28th, two weeks after her college graduation. With Mother’s Day and my husband’s birthday in the earlier part of the month, we try to find some joy in the celebrations, but to be quite honest, we’d just as soon skip the whole month.

    Hugs to you and your mom. 16 years is a long time, but the absence is always felt, isn’t it?


  6. Robin Post author

    Thanks, Shelley.

    Dear Les, yes, the absence is always felt. Time softens things, but it’s still hard. Warm hugs to you, too, because I know how very difficult this time of year is for you.

    Aubretia and creeping phlox go well together and are a lot alike. There’s just something really elegant about aubretia, though. I’m sure you’d love it.

    Thanks, Susan A.

    Thanks, Lynda. The color is such a treat after our long, gray winters!



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