After enjoying amazing spring flowers in Greece and Sardinia it’s a good time to reflect on Spring in our own country – Holland.   The moment I most love from our Dutch spring is not the flowering of the bulbs, but the moment the wild Anthriscus sylvestris  (Cow Parsley – in Dutch Fluitenkruid) starts to flower.  The flower head is delicate as well as massive.   Roadsides as well as fields and meadows are sometimes covered with a blanket of these wonderful flowers.  This plant flowers at just about the same time as blossoms appear on the pear trees and this combination can be really breathtaking, if you make a tour into the countryside!  ‘Ravenswing’ is a dark form of this plant and is very useful in the border and gives a very subtle effect.

Other shrubs that give me the real spring feeling are Wisteria and all Viburnum species with wide umbels. Wisteria is always amazing, with those long flower clusters in blue, mauve, white and pink. You see them everywhere, in every street or lane with some facades or front gardens being almost covered. And at last but no least those wonderful Viburnums with white umbels. Viburnum plicatum is the one you must have, with smaller and larger cultivars. These plants have additional useful qualities, like berries in summer and beautiful autumn color during the fall.   If you have an opportunity, buy a few plants and you will not be disappointed! To see more of our garden tours to Holland please click here.

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