1 DECEMBER 1928, Page 15


- In many parts of England to-day, but especially in Devon- shire, gardeners complain that their bulbs, particularly the tulips, have gone mad." Many are already as much as two inches above the soil. On the whole, bulbs obey the almanac with considerable exactness. That very observant, and too greatly neglected poet, Coventry Patmore, said with his wonted accuracy :—

The buried bulb does know The signals of the year,

And hails far summer with his lifted spear.

But the real signal should not be heard till February. The appearance of abnormal earliness is increased by the batterings of wind and rain, which have flattened the soil round the bulbs ; but it is beyond question a strange season. November has been impregnated with spring: Winter flowers are early as well as spring;. and a score of summer flowers have carried