Apparently, sometimes it is in ones favor to be fashionably late. Yesterday, on Bloom Day proper, it was so grey, wet, and miserable here, that I would have worried for my camera’s safety bringing it outside without an umbrella. This morning however, skies were blue, and we had the most wonderful, golden sunrise. There was a premonition last night…
… Mother Nature gifted us double rainbows, before disappearing beyond the horizon. Such a relief!
So – onto the garden… Let’s start in the front, since that’s where I spent the first hour and a half this morning raking up magnolia leaves and debris. That poor thing… as you might know, it has had a rough year, but I am ready to tackle the challenge of restoring its good looks. Or, at least the framework of its former good looks.
Arum italicum ‘Pictum’ which tends to seed itself in the most impossible places is peeking out through the plentiful new growth of Lonicera ‘Baggesen’s gold’.
More of the Lonicera. I appreciate this plant so much – does great in shade (mind you, tends to stay more green), is evergreen, and tough as nails. I also love its dainty leaves as contrast to larger fare, like the Fatsia next to it.
The sun is shining on all the little narcissus in the parking strip. And they shine back!
The aforementioned Fatsia, putting out new growth.
The combined protection of a Great Southern Magnolia, and Fatsia, and the planting atop a well-draining stone wall, creates a cherry spot for my Daphne. It’s pretty much in the eye of the howling eastern winds sweeping through the Columbia Gorge. Even so, while Daphnes elsewhere take a fairly brutal beating, this one always seems to come through alright. It helps to have mighty neighbors. I included a few yellow leaves – the only damage it sustained this comparatively badass winter.
I know you’re supposed to cut your roses back around President’s Day, but I’ve never understood why. Besides, there is enough cutting going on in the current White House administration, so I’m taking the benevolent approach and leaving it be. How could I not – the Hot Cocoa’s new growth is so… well – hot! Nothing like a little rebel gardening to make you feel better.
An eastward sunshine shot through the foliage of Fatsia and Fargesia robusta ‘Campbell’s form’ that was just planted last fall. All good there, it seems.
I have no idea what these are, but seeing those blushing beginnings of goodness has me kind of excited! I don’t remember planting iris there. Someone gave me starts of this iris-like, light yellow plant last year – it could be that. Eagerly waiting to see what it turns out to be.
Onto the back…
Buds of Clematis armandii ‘Appleblossom’. Last March, it was in full, magnificent bloom. But hey, I’m a gardener, and gardeners are a patient breed – right? It will get there, I’m sure!
Closeup of the buds.
Some kind of Hellebore, and one that I happen to like a lot. Not sure what name it goes by, but I love that color, and the greenish yellow edges on the petals.
‘Connie’ looking a little frostbitten, but not too much. She’s a sweetie!
I tend to like black flowers. I have several dark Hellebores, but this one is by far the darkest. That sad thing in the background is my beloved Grevillea ‘Scarlet Sprite’. It would normally be in full, fabulous bloom by now, but as you can see, had a very rough time this year. Makes me sad – she was covered in buds when the first ice hit. She definitely put up a good fight, but I’m doubtful as to whether there is still life under all that brown foliage. There are a few green spots left, and I hope they will prove to be more than temporary.
Ostrich ferns starting to unfurl. I take this as a sign that it likes its new home better than the last one.
Some of us did not come out of this winter looking fresh and ready for a new season. But, even death is sometimes lovely. This is an asparagus that I planted next to a Manicot. Pretty sure both of them are toast, although I don’t know enough about either to be absolutely certain. Ever the optimist, I’ll leave them in place for the time being. You just never know…
The adorable foliage of a mini Alchemilla I just bought. It’s not even planted yet, but looked so cute this morning with raindrops in its cupped leaves. Sadly, the photo doesn’t capture that jeweled look, but you get the idea.
Molly the Witch is shooting through the earth with magic powers. Creeping Jenny is sporting new growth, too. I know lots of people absolutely abhor that plant, but I love it, despite its habit of wanting to eat everything around it. But, sometimes that’s the whole point, is it not?
Drimys lanceolata, and a lovely little thing called Hebe odora (anomala) ‘Purpurea nana’. Love how the reds work off of each other. These two are going in a planter together, along with some other goodies yet to be determined. I will be teaching a workshop on planter design at local hot shot nursery Joy Creek (where I also work a few days a week) on April 2nd, if you’re interested and able to come. Details on their website. Would love to see you there!
Super excited to see buds on my little Berberis jamesiana. It’s pretty much just a stick yet, but that thing will one day have absolutely gorgeous fruits!
Himalayan Maidenhair fern in full, frontal unfurl!!
The Edgeworthia is finally blooming! Learned a lesson this year. In previous cold winters, I have covered this plant up. It has always frozen its buds off, and I have gotten hardly any blooms on it. This year – which was worse than any other we’ve experienced since living here – I didn’t bother. Good thing – it seemingly sailed through it without any help from me. I imagine it was probably that extended existence under wet covers that damaged it those times. Better to leave the wind to dry them out than extended moisture, I guess. Good to know, and less work for me!
If anything, a few blooms are quite a bit sparser than in good years. Still, I’m grateful for what I got.
My Cryptomeria ‘Sekkan sugi’ has cones! Never mind that it fell over in the howling winds, and I had to tie it to the fence to keep it standing – it seems alive and well.
There are buds on Stachyrus salicifolia. Can’t wait to see all those green blooms open!
Crappy, out-of-focus shot, but it captures the light quality I was enjoying out there, this morning. Ahhhh…!
Love the sight of emerging Podophyllum pleianthum. This clump gets bigger and bigger each year – I love it! Eve – if you’re reading this – you’re at the top of my list for starts… 🙂
This year’s very first mouse on my Mouse plant. So cute!
Comptonia peregrina coming along with new growth.
Here is a closeup.
A bud on a little Grevillea that wintered over in my shed. Good thing – the one that was left out is long gone…
New red growth on Metapanax davidii. Yup, had to tie this one to the fence too, as it was falling over in the storms. The winds this winter were brutal.
The cool stripy Rush I bought at Hortlandia last year, seems to have survived. I’m pretty sure the green stuff on the right is an imposter – probably a seed from our native Rush that found a welcoming environment.
Finally – out of all my pitcher plants, this one came through looking the best. So glad I, or Father Winter, didn’t kill them!
Well Friends – that’s about it! For more fab stuff, please click over to Pam at Digging, and Carol at May Dreams Gardens to see what else is surprising gardeners across our globe, in this wonkiest of weather years.