Spring: It’s happening.

And it could not have come sooner. While all you left-coasters were bragging about your blooms as early as March, Chicago’s spring has been a slow one, easing out of an intense winter & waking up week by week.

It all started a little while back with this badass daffodil, which came up first *and* survived a random April snow shower.

daffodil
Next came the tulips.

tulips

And then, everything. It always surprises me how quickly it happens. The difference between the first weekend of May — which I spent uncovering the beds & mulching stuff back to life — and this past weekend’s full-on flowering, is amazing. It’s all thanks to the past month of warm days, frequent showers & cool nights.

Here’s how the hostas in the back yard looked before: barely poking through the bed of pine needles…

hostas poking

…and here’s how they look now.

hostas blooming

My peony plant was just a bundle of sprouts a few weeks back…

peony sprouts

…and now there are a half-dozen buds.

peony leaves

Perhaps the best thing to pop up are these wee sprouts from lily of the valley I transplanted last year. They’re in a less than idyllic soil situation amidst the rocky runoff of the neighbor’s foundation, so I sort of wrote ’em off, till I saw these sprouts a few weeks back…

lilie sprouts

…and now, look! They may be small, but they’re doing awesome.

lillie flowers

And, of course, the lilacs.

lilac buds

Before we know it, summer will be here, but I’m enjoying the late-spring bloom in the mean time.