Ben Leach was strolling through woods and meadows on the traditional territories of the W̱SÁNEĆ Nation on Vancouver Island, he says, when he became aware of a whimsical presence staring back at him. “The frog seemed happy and content using the leaf to relax on, taking a break from the madness of the pond which was now full of life beside us. It made me stop and take a break myself. For that I was incredibly grateful.”
In addition to the photo atop this article Ben sent two more we’ve included in this springtime gallery provided by Tyee readers, who magnificently responded to our plea for visual rejuvenation. With just one more official day of spring to go, the glorious results are shared here.
‘Shuswap Lake’ by Diane Johnson
Diane writes from Salmon Arm: “For me, nothing says spring like the urge to sit by the lake. Once again, I can experience the sounds of birds chirping and water lapping, and I can feel a light breeze blowing on my face.”
‘Among the Che-rry Blossoms’ by Paco Escobar
Paco writes: “My little guy is named Che, so I've titled this ‘Among the Che-rry Blossoms.’” The photo was taken in Alice Townley Park in East Vancouver.
‘Green Comma butterflies in the Selkirk Mountains’ by Caroline Woodward
“Spring was at least two weeks late in the West Kootenays. On a recent hike between Sandon and Cody, old silver-mining towns near our home in New Denver, there were flocks of low-flying butterflies landing on the road around us during a (rare) sunny patch that day in late May. It was a delight to have these Green Commas fluttering around at the lower altitude on the outskirts of Sandon as we were soon up in the snowbanks.”
‘Robin’s Egg’ by Brian Rustad
Brian writes from Mosquito Creek, halfway between Calgary and Lethbridge: “I don't think robins are the first bird back in the spring but they do seem fast off the mark to get their eggs laid. Finding them on the ground below or near a nest is a sign of spring, whether they've been blasted from a nest by wind, or pushed out by a parent who doesn't think the embryo is viable.”
‘Playtime’ by David Cheatley
“This was taken in a place called Meadow Creek just north of the end of Kootenay Lake and just up the road from Cooper Creek.”
‘Lilacs to Lemonade’ by andrea bennett
The Tyee’s managing editor, who lives in Powell River, writes: “I went foraging in my neighbourhood to an empty house with a lilac bush, pilfered some lilacs, infused them into simple syrup and then made that simple syrup into lemonade. It tastes like being inside of spring. 10/10 recommend.”
‘Waldo’ by Norah LeClare
Norah writes from Powell River: “We have wonderful, eclectic gardens that include a pond overseen by Elvira of the Elvin Clan, Waldo the garden guardian and a little estate named No-one’s Home.”
‘Cherry Lane’ by Karen Jones
“I took this on my way to work in downtown Vancouver. It's like an embrace walking through this lane at the peak of the blossoms. I take photos to express my appreciation and amazement of being alive.”
‘Peaceful Water Lilies’ by Deirdre Kelly
“After a long winter, walking through VanDusen Gardens in Vancouver restores my soul. This was taken this year on the second day of spring.”
‘Prairie Crocus’ by Brian Rustad
“Certainly since the start of COVID, I've been noting the sequence of wildflowers blooming as winter recedes. Around here, southern Alberta, the prairie crocus seems to be the first sign of Earth's warming.”
‘Camas’ by Amanda Leddy
Amanda tells us she snapped this in Playfair Park in Saanich early May.
‘Goldfinch Party’ by Andrea Pratt
An artist who paints birds, Andrea writes: "I always look for the Rufous hummingbird to return to the Sunshine Coast in March, because it means that spring is around the corner. The sign that spring has actually arrived, however, is the return of the American goldfinch. These little party animals are a continual source of entertainment in a neighbourhood that already has an astounding variety of bird species in spring. The photo was taken on my Langdale deck."
‘Nothing Says Spring…’ by Ellen Hansen
From Salt Spring Island, Ellen sent us a bunch of flower pictures, inviting “have your pick ;-)” and proclaiming, “Nothing says spring like flowers, even if it’s so cheesy.”
‘Sea Island 1, 2, 3’ by Alan Girling
“Each spring, my wife and I take strolls out to the edge of the Fraser, not far from where we live in Richmond, with the express hope of catching glimpse of a family of geese. This year was an especially good year for goslings. My photo, taken one evening a few springs ago, contains, I feel, the added poignancy of a lone sentinel in the background.”
‘Dandelion’ by Bob Wyche
Wet spring or not, dandelions hurried through their paces on Gabriola Island, their yellow flowers becoming white puff balls by early June when this photograph was taken, says Bob.
‘Clover Meadow’ and ‘Fairy Slipper Forest’ by Ben Leach
Ben writes: “The first photo was taken in Saanichton on the traditional territories of the W̱SÁNEĆ Nation, just after one of the early spring rains. The sea of green and single blooming flower really signified the start of spring for me, the sign that life was once again beginning to bloom.
“The second was taken at Durrance Lake on the traditional territories of the W̱SÁNEĆ Nation. This was taken on a very special day, I was lucky enough to be a part of a group who were being taught cedar bark harvesting. I feel so privileged to have had that opportunity and will be forever grateful to J.B. Williams from the Tsawout Nation for sharing his knowledge with us and for spotting these beautiful Fairy Slipper flowers, his favourite flowers. This one is for him, háy sxʷ q̕ə.”
‘Spring Path’ by Amanda Leddy
This is Amanda walking with her daughter in Summit Park, Victoria, taken in spring of last year.
‘Okanagan Spring’ by Doug Johnson
Doug writes from Vernon: “Spring is taking hold on this warm and dry day: common garter snake, arrowleaf balsamroot, yellow-bellied marmot and brittle prickly pear cactus.”
‘Crocuses in Bloom’ by Simone Hoedel
“After a hike in Pacific Spirit Park in Vancouver, I noticed a lush spot of these crocuses with scores of bees in the late afternoon sunshine. It reveals the newness and freshness of the season.”
‘Grazing Gosling’ by Steve Burgess
We featured a close-up photo of a ladybug by The Tyee’s own columnist when we sent out our call in May for readers’ spring photos. “What else ya got?” we asked Steve. “This shot,” he says, “was taken beside Lost Lagoon in Vancouver and what with the gosling and the grass and wildflowers it seemed to me about as springy as spring can get. Enjoy the cuteness and try not to think about how the geese will soon outnumber us.”
‘Tulips’ by Christer Waara
“Here's a shot of spring, taken near UBC in late April. Biking past these flowers I hunkered down on the ground to get the huge difference between the spring blooming of the tulips contrasted with the still leafless trees in the background. A typical Vancouver spring image I think!”
‘Tulip Close-up’ by Karen Jones
“Gazing into the galaxy of any flower is better than naval gazing,” writes Karen.
'Heron at sunset by Second Beach in Stanley Park' by Andrew Ferris
We thank all who shared with us your excellent pictures. Here’s one more goodbye to spring from the shores of Vancouver.