Too early


For the past eight or ten years, we’ve gone to Francis Point at Easter to see the white fawn lilies in bloom. These are Erythronium oregonum, a flower I remember from childhood because they grew in abundance on Moss Rocks in Fairfield (a Victoria neighbourhood) and also in Beacon Hill Park where I’d ride my bike just to see the drifts of them with their beautiful flowers nodding on slender stems. We called them Easter lilies, mostly because you could count on them blooming at Easter. Emily Carr said of the fawn lily, “You will find her in tangled thickets and untilled soil in cuttings beside roadbeds. She blooms at Eastertime.” And even though Easter can come in early April, or later, or (rarely) earlier, this is when we find them. So this morning we went to Francis Point, though I had my doubts, given how cool our spring has been thus far.

Alas, they weren’t blooming, Yet. Another week or ten days of mild weather and I bet the little bluff where this picture was taken will be dense with their flowers.

It was good to be at Francis Point on such a mild calm morning. We saw three sea lions, though this photograph just shows two of them.

And a tug pulling a barge full of heavy equipment passed.

We sat in the sun at the end of the trail, under the recumbant arbutus trees and listened to ravens and the sweet song of what I think was a white-crowned sparrow.

And as we climbed back to the trail, we were delighted to see little patches of mimulus blooming against the rockface, tiny yellow trumpets flecked with red.

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