As I was lying on the ground in the garden on Saturday afternoon photographing small things I noticed the most amazing perfume.The air was warm and still, perfect conditions for the massed ranks of white violets (Viola odorata Alba) to be scenting the air, and for their delicate perfume to hang on the breeze, such as it was, rather than dissipating as usual.
I brought the original plants to the garden 16 years ago from my Northamptonshire garden, and they haven’t exactly thrived-more quietly survived in their small corner. But this year they have exploded into life and sprung up in places they haven’t been before, and their usual faint scent has become the sweetest perfume. In Greek mythology, these were Aphrodite, Goddess of Love’s flowers. I think this white form seems to be particularly appropriate for a Grecian Goddess. They are nectar rich too, providing food for many of those tiny things I was trying to photograph.
And it is not only in my garden the violets are doing their stuff. I read an article in the Guardian this morning (here) suggesting it is a nationwide phenomenon. How are the violets with you this April?