A New Hampshire Transplant Reflects on Spring in New England

Spring does not startle in New Hampshire the way it does in the Carolinas.

In March and April, my South Carolina home is set ablaze with the yellows of jasmine (and pine tree pollen) and the pinks and reds of dogwoods and azaleas across the landscape.

If you’re walking, the sweet aroma of honey suckle may cause you to stop in your tracks. If you step aside to sniff it up close, you’re likely to swoon. Spring in South Carolina is sensory overload—wisteria, dogwoods, magnolias, blackberries, cornflowers, sweet peas, irises, daisies and day lilies. Sunflowers! Morning Glory!


You’d better not stand too long in any one place or the flowers in your garden may shoot up so suddenly they slap you for getting in their way. Sometimes we forget we reside in a tropical rain forest. There is nothing slow or subtle about Spring near my home.

The bluebirds, goldfinch, cardinals, woodpeckers, bumblebees, and butterflies put on a dazzling light show that makes Disney jealous.

New Hampshire’s Spring is slower to arrive. No surprise there. The colors are muted. The landscape stays brown and grey through the April mud season, then beige begins to appear, then a soft golden color. Persevere. Be patient. Spring does not hurry here. After the gold comes pale green which contrasts handsomely on the hillsides with the dark emerald of the evergreens.

Flowers appear, but they are tiny, blue, purple and pink treasures to be relished for their rarity. I don’t know their names yet. Gradually, the greens turn darker. Lawns appear where there was mud. I passed a bush two days ago burdened with heavy purple flowers. I stopped to smell it. Heavenly. I was told it was Lilac. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen or smelled Lilac before.

The past two days outside the back window of the house where I’m living, I’ve seen tom turkeys and hens doing their courtship dance. I’ve watched a fox unsuccessfully chasing the turkeys. Any day now, I’m waiting for a fawn to step out of the woods to check out this new, lovely world.

Welcome to Spring, wherever you are.

Categories: South Carolina, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “A New Hampshire Transplant Reflects on Spring in New England

  1. Beth Zuercher


    Today in Columbia, it hit 90 degrees! However, the weather report for tomorrow is only in the 80’s! I’ll try to send some pictures of the flowers in bloom… ‘Can’t wait to get home, can you? However, we know you are supplying a great need where you are. I’m sure they will miss you!

    Take care! The Tigers will start their baseball tournament tomorrow, I think! I’ll try to send something from the game for you to see ,unless you are able to see it on T.V.!

    Beth Zuercher

  2. Mary Litzinger

    Growing up in Illinois we had a white and purple lilac bush in our front yard. I looked for them when I moved south but couldn’t find any. The oak hydrangea is the closet flower in looks but not aroma. I do miss those flowers and glad you discovered them.

  3. So happy you discovered the lilacs. They are one of my favorite spring flowers in Ohio, which I sorely miss in SC. Deep breaths, deep breaths into spring, Marion.

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