'Flower', says Mira, my two year old granddaughter, pointing at her floral hairclip. Then 'flower', she says again, pointing out the window. I look out and discover the most glorious sight in my son's garden: a fulsome mass of delicate pink, like a young girl spreading her ballet skirts, all ready to curtsey. There it stands, a flowering cherry tree, rising out of the long grass.
'Blossom!' I exclaim. 'Lots of flowers. It's a blossom tree'.
'Blossom,' says Mira, trying out this new word. And I think what a beautiful word it is. Then I ponder on the difference between a flower and a blossom. The dictionary, ever technical and accurate, tells me that blossom means flower or bloom, especially of a fruit bearing plant. Blossom also means to begin to thrive or flourish.