My much-anticipated first rose rose of the year (always 'Marie Bugnet') has begun to bloom. If you can call this wind-beaten, misshapen white thing I've pictured a bloom. No matter how unflattering I think the first bloom was, the pictured bumblebee was not put off by its lack of wholesomeness, finding and harvesting it right away. Nor was the embedded spider trying to stay hidden at the bottom of the bloom, who obviously decided, agreeing with Shakespeare, that discretion was the better part of valor, and thus sav'd his life, leaving the bumblebee alone. Who says that spiders aren't smart?
I suppose, depending on your point of view, the first bloom of 'Marie Bugnet' this year on April 30, 2011 is right on time, or a little early, or even a little late this year. She first bloomed on 4/21 in 2010 and on 4/23 in 2005 and 4/20 in 2004 so she could be considered a little late. But she bloomed later yet than this year in 2008 and 2009 (5/16 and 5/10 respectively). Just another indication that this year that I've felt is such a cold spring is probably just par for the course, and perhaps another indicator of how poorly we can predict global warming from a gardener's eye view.
I declare the rose year in Kansas officially begun!