Visiting family in Houston last year we saw, with some dismay, that the lemon tree we’d bought and planted in their garden was in a very sad and sorry state. An unexpected and uncharacteristic very cold snap one night had got to it and most of its leaves had frozen and shrivelled.
This winter it had been coddled in advance of any cold weather and covered in a protective blanket. When we arrived, the blanket was off, warmer weather had prevailed and the tree was looking very healthy.
Bursting with blossom, it smelled delicious. A bee was visiting the flowers and pollinating, and there is already an as yet unripened lemon hanging on one of the lower branches.
Seeing the tree in bloom reminds me of the words of a song:
Lemon tree very pretty
And the lemon flower sweet,
But the fruit of the poor lemon
Is impossible to eat.
I challenge that – the previous year there were enough lemons to make a couple of lemon meringue pies!