It is the time of the pansies. People are buying them for their flower boxes, and they can now be seen on graves as well. For me they are a sign that we are in mid spring.
Pansies were first introduced and became popular in Europe in 1812. In Germany we call them “Stiefmütterchen”, which means “little stepmother”. Did you know that the name “pansy” comes from the French word “pensée” meaning “thought”? Wikipedia just told me so – and whenever I’ll see pansies now I will be reminded of faces in thought.