Every farmstead displayed at least one. Many of the homes in the village followed the example. I didn’t become aware until many years later that we should thank the Norwegians. (I’m thinking the practical Norwegian farm wife.)
They were one of the early blossoms. Sweet and fragrant they attracted children’s noses as well as early season bees. Long after the blossoms were gone their shiny, well-defined leaves furnished an interesting background for photographs. In our family that included graduates, visiting veterans, and relatives from far away states.
Yes, my children. Long ago photos had to be taken outside in sunshine. Not all cameras included a flash attachment. Ask your grandmother to explain a “flash cube”.
I grew up far enough north that they sometimes reached their “peak” at the end of May. Those were the years when they would be cut, stems crowded into a quart jar, and set as grave decoration on Memorial Day.
They bloom earlier in my new home. And they like sunshine. They bring a smile to my face and tempt me to press my nose into a cluster of soft purple petals and breathe deep.