Dr. Spring and the Bluebells

The young man stumbles into the Doctor’s Office, groping for the back of a chair. He casts a desperate eye towards the Doctor.

“Help me,” he groans, leaning against the chair. “Help me, please. I am going crazy.”

Doctor Spring leaps to his feet. Ancient yet nimble, Doctor Spring tries to suppress a grin as he thinks to himself, “Great. Madness. My favorite ailment.”

Doctor Spring seizes the young man by the shoulders, stands him up straight and stares deeply into his eyes, thinking all the while, “Yep. Madness. I can see it in his eyes.”

“What is it, young man?” The Doctor asks, stridently. “Why do you think you are going crazy?”

“It is….” the young man groans, “the bluebells……”


“Everywhere I look. BLUEBELLS!”




“And when I shut my eyes, more bluebells. In vivid color.”


“Bluebells. Teeming with life.”


“Bluebells and more bluebells.”


“They haunt my dreams.  They are driving me crazy.”


The young man is trembling, shaking, glancing about nervously.

Doctor Spring thinks to himself, “I know. Oh Yes. I know. Best to face one’s fears directly.”

The Doctor dances from the room, calling to the young man “Come with me. Come with me. Let us walk in the valley.”

The young man timidly follows the Doctor out of the office, into the garden and over to the edge of the valley. They look out upon a sea of bluebells.


“Behold!” Proclaims Doctor Spring. “Your worst fear.”


The young man crumbles to the ground, whimpering. He curls into the fetal position, shivering.

YIKES.”  Thinks Doctor Spring. “Maybe that wasn’t a good idea.

He leaps to action, looking about the garden. His eye lands on the obvious thing. The pretty, bright and variously colored patch of tulips.


He grabs the young man by the shoulders, stands him up and positively frog-marches him across the garden to the tulip patch.

“Behold, young fella,” he says in a sing-songy voice. “These are not bluebells.”


“They don’t look anything like bluebells. They aren’t the same color as bluebells. By golly, they aren’t even the same color as each other.”


The young man continues to shiver and appears to be generally unresponsive.

This is the critical moment. Doctor Spring knows just what to do. He kneels over the tulips and whispers gently to the young man. “Look. Come see what I see.”

The young man kneels next to the Doctor.

“See the pretty tulip?”


“Look into the tulip.”


“Look closely,” whispers Doctor Spring.   “Behold the wonders of nature.”

The young man stares right down into the tulip.


He lingers over the tulip for a long time.

“Look into another,” says Doctor Spring softly.

The young man stares into another tulip…


and another…


and another…


The young man looks up. He stares directly into Doctor Spring’s eyes. He is no longer shivering. He appears to be calm, the look of sheer panic gone from his eyes.

“Yes, there now,” says Doctor Spring in a low, soft voice, reaching out and gently touching the young man. “You rest, young fella. Lie among the tulips and rest.”

The young man stretches out among the tulips.


He drifts into a deep, restful sleep.

That will do,” the Doctor thinks to himself.

Doctor Spring returns to his office, fetches his lunch and comes back into the garden where he enjoys a peaceful, solitary midday meal among the bluebells.


As he munches his lunch, the good Doctor thinks to himself, “Hmmmm…. I think they are pretty.  That lad must be suffering from a classic case of Too Much of a Good Thing.”



61 thoughts on “Dr. Spring and the Bluebells

    1. Thanks Nia. The bluebells were particularly spectacular this year. As you say, so beautiful. 🙂

    1. Thanks Aditix. They are amazing. They’ve really taken over the valley and they bloomed for weeks this spring. I hope the pictures did them justice. Have a great day. 🙂

  1. Oh Jim. To us who live in Africa where it is hot and dry at this time of the year, you have brought the equivalent of a gentle cool breeze.

    1. Thanks. A gentle, cool breeze. I can see how these pictures evoke such – as they do rather thrive under a nice spring breeze. We’re just now beginning to work on “hot” here in the center of the USA, but we aren’t yet close to “dry.” Rather wet this year, so far. Have a great day. 🙂

    1. Thanks Amy. It has been an excellent spring for the bluebells. They bloomed in abundance and for quite a long time. Cheers. 🙂

  2. Gorgeous! So glad I can enjoy those beautiful pictures of yours Jim! 🙂

    1. Thanks Christiane. A nice mixture of colors in one part of the garden and near monotone in another. That’s the story this spring. Have a wonderful day. 🙂

  3. Not only amazing photos, Jimmy, but you were born to write soap operas! 🙂

    1. Thanks. Glad you like the tale. And yes, the bluebells really are stunning this year. Or were, as they are fading now that the trees are coming into leaf. Spring, moving along. Just like Fall for you. 🙂

    1. Thanks Julie. Trying to keep it interesting. The bluebells really are cool and amazing. And they appear to be the first course of the great summer feast for the bumblebees. 🙂

  4. Beautiful images as always! I hope you’re not suffering from the same ailment as the young man 🙂 I’ve never seen bluebells in person, so your photos were a real treat. Happy spring to you!

    1. Thanks. Oh no! Definitely suffering that poor lad’s ailment – I’m OK with too much of a good thing. I can handle it! Happy Spring to you – I’m glad to share the pretty bluebell valley. 🙂

  5. I’m blue with envy. Bluebells are not common here. Yours are spectacular! As are your tulips– great post!

    1. Thanks. I’d say they are ultra common here. At least in our valley. And boy are they looking good this year. 🙂

    1. Thanks. It has been an excellent spring for the bluebells and tulips. All came into bloom, then we went into a cold snap and they just kept blooming. Wonderful! 🙂

    1. Thanks Alice. There is rather a monoculture going on in that valley. But they are pretty and the forest floor certainly appears to be healthy. Have a fabulous day. 🙂

    1. Thanks Yes, it is rather a carpet of flowers. We have to keep the invasive mustard garlic out, but other than that, the bluebells just do their thing. 🙂

  6. Thank you for sharing your beautiful garden. You just be smiling all of the time. Your images certainly made me happy this morning. Loved your funny narrative!

    1. Thanks Sharon. Dr. Spring is back. Just trying to have some fun while sharing the beauty of our pretty flowers. Glad you loved the narrative. 🙂

    1. Thanks Jet. It is rather an expanse of bluebells in the woods. Bit of a monoculture, really, but a mighty pretty one. Have a great day. 🙂

    1. Thanks Benjamin. I expect your world has come into full leaf about now, just like mine. On with the later part of Spring. 🙂

    1. Thanks. We are definitely not experiencing a bleak autumn Sunday here. Rather a rainy spring Sunday, but not bleak. I’m glad to add color to your season. Cheers. 🙂

    1. Thanks Cynthia! I hope you are having a nice spring. :)We’re all in leaf and moving on toward blooming peonies around here. 🙂

  7. Hi Jim, The plant you are calling ‘bluebells’ is different to the English bluebell. The plant we call ‘bluebell’ here is an Australian native.

    The tulip photos are magnificent. The inside of the tulips is amazing.

    I am looking forward to the peonies.

    1. Hi Margaret. The plant I feature in this post is Mertensia virginica, a native to eastern North America commonly known as the Virginia Bluebell. Curiously, I have seen several posts which show “bluebell woods” in England. Very beautiful. I noticed that they appear to be an entirely different plant than ours but have the same ability to overtake the floor of a forest. Even more curiously, I have not seen blog posts – or any other sources – which show the same phenomenon happening with respect to our Virginia Bluebell. Except for the valley on my property. I can’t imagine that our bluebell valley is unique, but I haven’t seen pictures of similar woods. They are native, though I’m not sure the valley happened completely naturally, as I believe the person who owned this property in the 1950s introduced a lot of native wildflowers in greater concentration. She might have started the process, or aided it anyway. And it probably wouldn’t keep happening, not so homogeneously, if I didn’t remove the invasive, non-native, chinese mustard garlic from the valley. Mustard garlic aside, I have witnessed the bluebells significantly expand their area over the 15 years I’ve been here. Amazing. I am compelled to pull them from other gardens, lest bluebells overtake everything.
      Oh, one other thing. We have a reference book on wildflowers which has a lovely picture of bluebells. Its our valley!
      Have a great day. 🙂

  8. Dear Jim, I feel like your showing up yesterday by finding me and my blog entry is the HUGEST gift for ME! The ripple now as I read your amazing blog postings only 4 so far but I will definitely read them all….and reread to my husband last night the 12.31.2014 posting! I am in awe of your style in capturing the magic of Mother Nature…THANK YOU already but it seems not words to convey my enormous respect and gratitude…!

    1. Hi Kim. THANKS. What an enormous compliment. I’m glad you like the blog. Most people seem to like my pictures. Many seem to like my verse and a few seem to like my prose. It seems you like them all. That’s awesome. Thanks. And 12.31.2014. Good ol’ Stone Bunny. 🙂

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