Autumn crocuses in flower

No Return

Sometimes flowers don’t survive here for long. Last year these autumn crocuses were growing in little wall-mounted pots by our front door. Really, they needed to be planted in the ground. However, because they’re very toxic, I decided that it would be best to keep them somewhere out of reach of our cats.

So this year they haven’t come back. Totally unsurprising, given that they had so little space to grow in. But that’s OK – sometimes I’m happy to have a plant that I know will just be temporary. It can be enjoyed at the time (and of course, photographed), and valued for the brief enhancement it brings to the garden.

Most of our plants do come back from year to year. Others are a fleeting glory that remains only in memories and photos. For me, they give a bit of variety to both the garden and my photography.

These autumn crocuses may be gone, but, having given me something new to photograph, their images will remain.

15 thoughts on “No Return

  1. I can’t help myself. We could say that your crocuses croaked! That’s an inelegant way of putting it, of course, but your larger point’s the important one. All beauty is ephemeral, and if these flowers were just a little more ephemeral than others — well, that’s perfectly fine. After all, we’re still enjoying them.

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    1. I don’t know about the spring crocuses but there is some toxicity in a lot of plants. Lilies are the worst because if the cat gets lily pollen on its fur and then licks it off, that’s enough to cause fatal kidney damage. I think that tulips and daffodils are pretty toxic and when one of my cats was sick, the vet asked if we had them. But cats don’t generally eat plants, so they are much less likely to be poisoned than dogs. (But some cats do eat bits off houseplants etc!) Here’s some links with good info: (good general info and a plant list)
      and probably the best list:
      I hope these are helpful – it was something I worried about a lot when my cats were very young because my Ellie would ‘catch’ and eat leaves. Now I’d worry more about things that might be irritant or things they might eat by mistake when they want to eat ordinary grass to get rid of hairballs. (I don’t use any chemicals in my garden – and I don’t use disinfectant anywhere they might get to in the house, because it can poison cats.) Enjoy life with your new cat! 🙂

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      1. Thanks for all the great links! That is very helpful. I do have some of those plants in my, especially Day Lillies. I do not foresee Sophie trekking around my front yard anytime soon, but never say never. I downloaded the PDF’s to help me out when I reorganize my yard.

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      2. The pollen from the day lilies would be a problem – might be best to put them somewhere unreachable. I’m glad the links were helpful! 🙂

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  2. I’ve tried a few times to grow lady’s slippers in our woods. They require certain fungi in the soil which were in the potted plants I bought and then put into the ground. But, alas, they were one and done. We’ve had good luck with crocuses (croci? 🙂 ) but haven’t tried them in pots. Yours was lovely and lives on. 🙂

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    1. LOL, Steve, I like the idea of croci as a plural! I have spring crocuses in a much bigger wide and shallow pot and they seem happy there. (I can see the growth coming through already on those – a bit too early!)

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