For the years I lived in France, I desperately missed the presence of Spring flowers - in the woods, in the shops, in the magazines even...
...even though the Limousin is only just south of the centre, the weather was too hot in the summer to support the naturalisation of the bulbs, it seems, although I understand there are more of them in the northern areas of Brittany and Normandy. I longed to see bunches of daffodils for sale in the supermarkets, but on the one occasion I did - they were accompanied by eucalyptus leaves, which did not seem right! I planted them in my garden year after year, but they were recalcitrant and either came up with a couple of spindly leaves and maybe a stunted flower at soil level, or they did not come up at all. When I turned out the pots, there was often no trace of the bulbs, so perhaps they made tasty eating for those voracious French snails.
Hyacinths fared better - coming up earlier, but I had little success with daffodils - this one was the only one in a whole pot that flowered!
But with snowdrops I had no success at all and there were none growing wild in the woods in the area where I lived. So today I was so happy to see their cheeky little flowers outside the greengrocer's shop in Bishops Waltham, wrapped in tiny little bunches at 50p each. I bought a couple and here they are in my Susie Watson little green jug which I love just as much as the flowers!