We all look forward to spring at the end of a long winter, and the first signs of spring actually arriving are treasured. For me there are a few species of flowers, both in the garden and in the wild, that are the heralds of early spring. The first two of these are from gardens, one our own, and one a neighbour's.
The first is a dwarf iris, only a few inches tall, and bright royal blue. Below are aconite flowers, also very tiny, but bright. Along with snowdrops, these are among the very first flowers out, sometimes blooming while there's still snow on the ground.
And below is a skunk cabbage. I posted some pictures of these earlier in the month, but I went back and searched until I found one where the flower inside the curved protective covering was visible. This one really does come up through the snow.