Almost all our plants are native to the area. There are several reasons for that. The obvious one is that native plants are more likely to thrive with less intensive care. Another is that we want to maintain a natural look to our yards.
We made an exception for one of my very favorite plants. I love camellias. We planted two of them knowing full well that we are on the border of their preferred regions. Both plants have done well, despite the occasional pruning by the deer. (BTW: Deer do not know they don't eat certain plants. Sometimes they come in large numbers. One deer will take a bite and decide the plant is not good. But do they communicate that to the other deer? NO...every single deer has to take a bite as well. Six deer can do a lot of damage to a plant they don't really like.)
The camellias have beautiful green foliage and that should be enough. But occasionally there is more. Every year, the camellias are loaded with huge buds promising beautiful blossoms to come. And almost every year the weather decides otherwise. Too often we see the lovely buds turn brown and fall off. We know that is always possible...in fact likely. Yet we remain hopeful that this may be the year.
Well, this is in fact the year. The camellias, so filled with promising buds are now in glorious bloom.
I stop every time I pull into the driveway and admire the camellias. What a wonderful bonus. One of my favorite plants tells me spring is definitely here. Oh, I know I will have to pull out the sweatshirts again. I'll have to close the windows and turn on the heat again. I know the weather we are enjoying is quite unseasonable. But you know what? I'm going to enjoy every single blessed day.