Holidays Seasons

Easter Under Lockdown

OK, I’m not really in a cage, but sometimes I feel like I am! Photo:

This is going to be a very different Easter! Like most people, the coronavirus pandemic sees my wife and I in self-isolation, confined to our home. Other Easters, we’d have been sharing a delicious Easter brunch with the extended family, then participating in the grandkids’ Easter egg hunt. And probably overdosing on chocolate as well. This year, we’ll have to make do with seeing family members on a screen and we’ll probably just have toast and eggs for breakfast. And I don’t think there’s any chocolate anywhere in the house*.

*Stop the presses! Yesterday, after I finished writing this blog, our daughter-in-law made a surprise visit to our doorstep and dropped off two chocolate eggs, one for each of us. Easter chocolate is thus assured!

Only the first snowdrops are showing in my yard. Photo:

But is that really so bad? None of us is sick, nor is anyone in the family, thank goodness. That’s something to celebrate. And spring is here. A bit reluctantly outdoors, perhaps (where I live, snow still dominates the landscape at this season), although maybe a snowdrop or two will push through. You probably have flowers in your garden by now: at least spring bulbs, maybe cherries and forsythias and hellebores too. Do take the time to appreciate them and to soak up the pleasure they bring!

There’s lots of bloom and color in my home. Photo:

But spring is definitely here indoors. I have “Easter flowers” galore right now. OK, maybe none are traditional Easter blooms, but that’s of little importance. I have orchids, amaryllis, begonias, anthuriums, spathiphyllums, African violets, Thanksgiving cactus, streptocarpus, crown of thorns, sinningias and much more in bloom. And judging from the look of the buds on some of my hibiscus, one or two should be in bloom on Easter Sunday. And there are all sorts of happy, healthy foliage plants in shades of spring green if not other bright shades. That’s color enough. 

Our little Easter bouquet of kalanchoes. Photo:

Also, my daughter-in-law and her three kids brought us an Easter gift earlier this week (we got to wave at them through the living room window!): a pot with three different blooming kalanchoes in it. It’s much appreciated and reigns on our dining room table. 

Seedlings are my harbingers of spring! Photo: Andreas Goeliner,

And of course, I have my seedlings. Trays and trays of them. Yes, I know, seedlings aren’t flowers, but they’re my harbingers of spring. Every day (and in fact, several times every day), I get out of my office chair to check on them. Not that I really think something has happened to them that would need my attention in the 2 hours since I last looked, but there’s something so exciting and satisfying about watching young plants grow. I actually touch them, stroke them, hume their greenness: it gives me energy. And they really do change in appearance at least daily. Every visit fills my heart with joy and hope. 

May your Easter be as joyful as mine! 

Larry Hodgson is one of Canada’s best-known garden communicators. He has notably been editor-in-chief of HousePlant Magazine, Fleurs, Plantes et Jardins, À Fleur de Pot and Houseplant Forum magazines and is currently the garden correspondent for Le Soleil and radio garden commentator for CKIA-FM Radio. He has written for many garden publications in both the United States and Canada, including Canadian Gardening, Harrowsmith, Horticulture, Fine Gardening and Organic Gardening. He also speaks frequently to horticultural groups throughout Canada and the U.S. His book credits include The Garden Lover’s Guide to Canada, Complete Guide to Houseplants, Making the Most of Shade, Perennials for Every Purpose, Annuals for Every Purpose, and Houseplants for Dummies, as well as nearly 60 other titles in English and French. He is a past president of the Garden Writers Association (now Garden Communicators International) and the winner of the prestigious 2006 Garden Media Promoter Award offered by the Perennial Plant Association. He resides in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

14 comments on “Easter Under Lockdown

  1. Happy Easter to you too! My seedlings are keeping me company today as well. 🙂

  2. Ann Evans

    Joy and hope, yes! Happy Easter to you as well.

  3. Christine Lemieux

    Happy Easter! Hunting for potting soil today!

  4. Kris sinclair

    Happy Easter to you. Thank you for your hard work in writing your garden blog. It’s the first thing I read every day!
    Kris in Sacramento, CA (where my 120 roses are about to explode!!)

  5. Margaret

    Best wishes for a happy Easter to all of you gardeners out there who read Larry’s wonderful column. I hope you and your families are safe and well. Especially those of you who are performing essential work on the front lines. We thank you. I hope that one of the good things to come out of this sad time is that your sacrifices are appreciated and your work gets the respect it has always deserved.

    I am so grateful that I have a small backyard. I can’t imagine being in an apartment, maybe with some small children. We’re taking this time to get the garden ready for planting. Usually I have some excuses not to clean up. Not this year! I have torn out what seems like miles of English ivy! I have gotten to the point where it seems possible to finish this task.

    My local hardware store delivers (who knew?) and they brought me mulch, potting soil, seed. My unsung heroes! Remember to tip well.

    Gardeners are the most hopeful people. Every year we plan the best garden ever, but we are happy with whatever we grow. Maybe this year will be the best.

    Peace, joy, love.

  6. What a lovely selection of Easter plants! It looks as if you had a colourful Easter! Happy Easter!

  7. Seedlings are better than flowers.

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