So, it’s the First Day of Spring, they say. To me, it seems half way over – I haven’t written a single post about the garden marvels I’ve come across this year. Oh well, better late than never. Here are a few – in no particular order…
The first few months of 2016 have had me stumped by a hitherto unprecedented tech abundance , along with the corresponding tech challenge. New laptop (with Photos, which honestly seems quite a bit different from I-photo), iPad, my most beloved camera, and two phones (one mine, the other for work). Those of you who know me, know that I would rather clean the bathroom with a Q-tip than spend an afternoon learning to maneuver software. Good grief – can anyone please give me some pointers on how to manage photos? From a sunny perspective, I suppose that I should be thrilled that there is almost constant access to some kind of device with which to snap a photo or two, when an opportunity arises. The humbling reality surrounding this abundance though, is that I often forget which device I took which photo with. There are way too many options for my simple mind, I get lost in the complications of it all, and time keeps moving on without me. Enough whining – here are some photos!
Corsican Hellebore – love the green little bell-shaped, half-open buds.
This is what the Edgeworthia looked like when I came back from Sweden. Dang – felt almost cheated. It truly felt as if I had missed the first half of spring!
Close-up of the Edgeworthia flower. Isn’t it interesting how some of the little flowers are white, whereas the others are yellow?
The perfect little ball-shaped buds of Clematis armandii ‘Appleblossom’. Even though the open version is stunning, I do admit to missing the buds when they are gone.
C. ‘Appleblossom’ in full bloom at dusk.
Crazy abundance, wouldn’t you agree?
Here it is showing its true colors – it is eating our garage!
Pretty sure I have the tag somewhere, but for now, it’s just a NOID Hellebore.
The open flower of a Star Magnolia.
A bud about to open on the aforementioned Magnolia.
Iris japonica ‘Afrodite’ unraveling its buds. Planted last year, this is the first time I will see blooms. For some reason, I seem to remember they will be a light violet, but I secretly hope they will open up to be white…
Euphorbia ‘Ascot Rainbow’ – such marvelous colors! This is my favorite stage of this plant – before the flower unfurls.
A Tulipa viridiflora I had forgotten I planted. Love the white edges on the leaf.
The hairy little bud of a Pulsatilla, or Pasque flower, perfectly in time for Easter.
Seeing these made me so happy! The fuzzy little buds of Syneilesis aconitifolia or Shredded Umbrella Plant. I love this plant!
Dicentra ‘Valentine’ – a red variety of the good ol’ Bleeding heart.
The loopy flowers of Grevillea ‘Scarlet Sprite’.
It will be quite a sight when all the flowers open! It blooms for a long, long time.
The mahogany red new growth of Berberis replicata.
I love the bumpy, fish bone stems of miniature Elm Ulmus parvifolia ‘Seiju’. Check out the little green pearls along the branches.
Seiju again – here the pearls have unfolded to reveal tiny little serrated mouse ear leaves. So adorable!
Speaking of mouse ears – this is a Mouse plant (Arisarum proboscideum).
I love the silvery white edges of this Senecio…
… and Melianthus is always a favorite. I can’t get enough of those leaves, both as they unravel, and as they collect water when fully opened. Such a superb plant!
As the Appleblossom clematis is starting to wane, C. ‘Blue Dancer’ is coming to the fore. Those buds are so elegant!
One of my favorite parts about certain Hellebores, is that they turn green with age.
This one is blowing me away with those developing seed heads.
Some of the best the world of foliage has to offer (at least in my garden) – Podophyllum pleianthum, or Chinese Mayapple. One of my faves, for sure!
Last but not least, an experimentation in color. A recent challenge is to make a pink dogwood in a client’s garden appear as un-pink as possible. (He is not a fan of pink, but the tree is original to the house, and he doesn’t want to take it out.) I’m thinking if I give it a supporting cast of plants that pull it more toward reds and burgundies, it might become – if not invisible – at least more tolerable to him. Distraction is a powerful tool. Should the experiment fail (heavens forbid), the dogwood’s bloom time is not disturbingly long. Honestly, I don’t think it will fail, but more on that later. First, I have to talk him into it, so for now, I’m playing with optical tricks and metamerism. Seen here is a double pink Hellebore, the fine-textured Asparagus setaceus, and the dark Rhododendron ‘Everred’. Not the best example of the effects of my experimentation, as the Hellebore still appears fabulously and flamboyantly pink, but it is a combination that I found myself really liking, so it gets to wrap up this post. 🙂