15 April 2011

Actual Blooms for Garden Blogger's Bloom Day! Imagine that.

It has to be spring now, because I took my studded winter tires off the car on Thursday afternoon. No more snow allowed until November, now. I mean it. It's time for spring, because look, I has blooms, serious blooms, just in time for Garden Blogger's Bloom Day. I'm so excited to be able to participate in outdoor blooms that I'm actually posting before Carol even has the link up for this month. Whoo hoo!

Okay, calming down now a little bit, but still leading off with the prize, the jewel, the most delightful beauty in the garden next to those naughty blue poppies...Helleborus 'Golden Sunrise'. Knowing our spring weather as I do, my hellebores are still protected by some evergreen limbs because of the excessive cold winds we're having, but a couple of warm days and warm rain prompted these to peek out long enough for me to snap a photo last evening just before dark.



This is the hellebore that started it all for me a few years ago, 'Ivory Prince'. I've told the story how other gardeners well versed in the art of hellebore growing taught me how to get mine through our eccentric winters (with protective mulch), and now I've got a nice collection of plants coming along. And there are more coming in the next couple of weeks, too. Yes, they're an obsession.
Iris reticulata 'JS Digit' has recovered from the insult of snow from last week, and is showing its lovely purple colour nicely.
Alas, I cannot remember the name of this dwarf iris, but I utterly love its rich violet-blue flowers. It's the first one to spring up, so I'm waiting for a few of its relatives to follow suit. I DID make a note of where I planted bulbs last fall, so we're waiting to see what comes up where. I'm not real encouraged by the eranthis, though, as so far only one of them has come up and bloomed. The others seem to be lost. Maybe the squirrel got them.
While I have posted photos of the glory of the snow (chionodoxa) several times already, I can't help myself. I just love their starry flowers, either in elegant and cool wedgwood blue (with a hint of pink-purple striping each petal)...
While 'Pink Giant' just keeps spreading and blooming, creating masses of softly warm pink stars in several different spots. I love the small bulbs that quietly bloom and multiply without any fuss from me, making lovely colonies and only asking that I don't accidentally dig them up!
The snowdrops are still going strong, and are being joined by masses of Puschkinia, or striped squill. This bed still had snow on it late last week, because it was one of the spots with the deepest drifts but also is in a cool hollow so it doesn't melt as quickly. Other parts of the garden have puschkinia in full bloom, as these will be in a few days.
On Saturday we travelled down to West Pubnico to my friend Alice's nursery, Ouest-ville Perennials, one of my favourite places (and my dearest buddies). On the way, we stopped at Port L'hebert Pocket Wilderness, where the first mayflower (Epigea repens) were shyly showing off their buds. I thought maybe if I stood looking at them long enough they would open, but they didn't accomodate me. Oh well. They're probably open now. This is the provincial wildflower of Nova Scotia and a lovely, lovely thing.
My collection of alpines is slowly growing, and this is one of two species of Draba that I added last year from Ouestville Perennials. Even without blooming, they are delightful little rosettes of fuzzy foliage, tidy and charming. *I had a brain bilabial fricative last night in my excitement, and referred to this as Bollax, when I meant Draba. I do have Bollax, a curious and fun little plant, but it's no where near blooming!
I am a huge fan of most members of the Borage family, including all the pulmonarias. I love these plants for their tenacity and determination. They are barely out of the ground before they are in bloom, and they continue to bloom here until well into June. Then the foliage of most of them, spangled in silver as it is, continues to glow in the garden once the flowers are spent. This is an unnamed seedling, of which there are many around my garden.
This is another pulmonaria, 'Red Start', which is distinctive for several reasons. Not only are the flowers a constant reddish pink, unlike those that start pink and turn blue, but the foliage is larger than most of the other species and cultivars, and is unmarked by silver spangles or splashes. It's as keen to get going as are its relatives, though.
At the moment the only flowering shrub with true blossoms is Hamamelis 'Diane', which is pretty much in full, funky flower now. There are several salix species in catkins, as well as Corylus avellana, but they can wait for another post. I wanted true flowery blooms for this post, and other than the crocus that I've already shown off numerous times, and some chilly heath out in the back, this is my collection for April. Next month, there will be many more to join, of course. Thanks as always to Carol for hosting Bloom Day, and I hope you'll pop over and visit, and add your own link of blooms!

And if you're out and about in the Annapolis Royal /Upper Clements area tomorrow, Jill Covill of Bunchberry Nurseries is having her annual Spring Fling from 1-4 pm at the nursery. Her website is down right now because she's moved her highspeed from her home to the nursery, and that has meant Aliant screwing things up for her as she moved to another provider, but the site will likely be up by tomorrow. Among the events will be the Easter Bonnet contest, a plant trivia contest where you can win Bunchberry Bucks for use at the nursery, nibblies and coffee, and oh yeah, I'll be there with books and probably a rant or two about goutweed. It's a great way to launch into the gardening season, so we hope to see you there!

35 comments:

  1. Beautiful blooms! My 'Diane' hasn't bloomed yet, but soon. There was actually snow in Western Washington state today~weird weather.

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  2. It's great to have blooms at last in the garden and those hellebores look lovely. I've seen Ivory Prince for sale here aswell. I wonder if I havea pulmonaria Red start in my garden Jodi? as what you describe is just what I have in the garden aswell. Bollax sounds like an interesting little plant to read up on - I'm sure it would survive here if it can with you. Our landscape is full of wild anemones just now and I must do a google and see what those mayflowers look like.

    Rosie

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  3. I just love your last three flowers! Also it appears you have about the same climate as here with me.

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  4. Oh wow, Jodi! Such lovely colours. We're a bit further behind out here but I've come to accept that. Nothing I can do about it anyway. Eventually spring will make it to Dalhousie. I just need to be patient. Soon time to check the treelots for Mayflowers.

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  5. I agree with you concerning snow. No more until...November did you say? How about next January? Anyway, you have a beautiful mix blooming for the start of spring. More to come. I just planted a 'Diane'. I hope she lives long and flowers as deliciously as yours.

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  6. We're still hanging on to the hazels and hellebores of winter here in CT - your pulmonarias are way ahead of ours - we're not even budding yet. Sweet reticulata shots!

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  7. And what glorious blooms you have Jodi. Isn't is wonderful knowing it is just the beginning of the season. The borage is an elegant yet tough plant. I must remember to put some in the garden this year. Happy GBBD.

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  8. So pretty Jodi. Your garden is well on the way to its Springtime show. The blue iris is my fave.

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  9. So pretty Jodi. Your garden is well on the way to its Springtime show. The blue iris is my fave.

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  10. Love, love the Irises! Wonderful patches of Snowdrops, pretty Chionodoxa and Golden Sunrise is indeed a stunner! It's terrific to see your garden awakening.

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  11. mos definitely goin to get some of them iris for next year.

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  12. Hooray for spring, and I'll second your motion for no more snow, Jodi! I love all your sweet little irises, and the glory of the snow, especially the gorgeous blue, are so pretty. Now if I can only remember this until fall, I want to add some of both of these to my garden. Cheers on the beginning of a beautiful garden season, Jodi!

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  13. Beautiful blooms.. This is my first year of Hellebores and I can't wait to add more!

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  14. How wonderful that you're finally getting some blooms, Jodi! Your blog never fails to bring me cheer and happiness!

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  15. Very beautiful Iris flowers. I wish i could grow alpine plants including chinodoxa. My subtropical climate does not allow growing these. Your blooms are just gorgeous.

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  16. Gorgeous flowers, Jodi! And, I laughed out loud at your title (I was thinking the same thing: whew! something is actually flowering out there... :-)

    Happy Bloom Day!

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  17. You have a lot coming up beautifully in your garden...so glad i found you! oxox, tracie

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  18. The helleborus is stunning! What an interesting color on that variety.

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  19. I love that freckled hellebore, and I must remember to plant some similar iris this year. Your pics of witch hazel and snowdrops made me realize that our have disappeared here already! That's what's great about blooms day- preserving those ethereal things.

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  20. Jodi:

    So nice to see the garden coming back to life after what seems like an extended hibernation. Sadly, there is snow in my neck of the woods slated for Sunday - seems the week we get in our first nursery stock, it bloody well has to snow - so now you have someone to blame if it should head your way next!

    You inspired me to order in H. 'Golden Sunrise' after seeing it on your weblog! It truly is spectacular. Seems this is the year that gardeners are 'discovering' this stalwart genus. I haven't been able to keep them on the benches! I have the same Iris - and yes, for me as well the name escapes - smashing though is it not?

    I am looking forward to more bursts of colour - the Primula and Narcissus are ready to pop!

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  21. Happy Bloom Day. Spring is coming to you at the rate of 20 miles per day. It will get there. Promise.

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  22. Someday I'm going to get one of those flowers. Great photo.

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  23. Borage is happy in SoCal, too. The common blue type grows about waist high here- although what location she'll pick is a suprise. Kind of a hide and seek she plays with me.

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  24. Jodi, so glad to see you had some blooms in your garden to share! I especially love the helleborus!

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  25. Excited for you finally...I am right about with you in my garden...love that 'red start'...will be looking to add that...great color!

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  26. Jodi, Happy GBBD for you...this winter has been tiresome but the sight of your hellebore has brought such a smile to my face..it is lovely...oh and I am loving the book

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  27. oh I'm awfully jealous Jodi. I've discovered this year that being at the bottom of a hill means our snow is the last to go. Still no blooms here but I've got my fingers crossed they'll come soon. I'll have to admire yours in the meantime.

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  28. Ooh, I like that purple Iris. The second one is lovely too, but there's something about the color of the first one. I'm making a note of the name right now....

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  29. Such beautiful blooms Jodi! A belated happy Garden Blogger's Bloom Day!

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  30. I am pretty selective in the Blogs I follow. I pick those that add to my life and experience in gardening and beauty. Those from places around the world that help me here at Lake Michigan. I like your Blog. Seems we share much the same late Spring etc. Hope to see many more photos as I follow your Blog. I do lots of photos and let them "speak" for the Gardens at Waters East, my Blog. You can see, I still have snow even today. Jack

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  31. I've never seen a salmon colored pulmonaria and I'm smitten now. These happen to be a favorite of mine too. Imagine they do well all the way up to your climate and excel down here too. I love them all. Your hellebores are gorgeous!

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  32. Love your hellebore. I only discovered them recently and I can see how they could become an obsession. I also love your Draba, a plant I'd never heard of.

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  33. The irises look beautiful - some great pics on here!
    http://greenfingersmum.blogspot.com

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  34. So glad you had blooms for Bloom Day. I do believe it is spring in most of the country, even though the temps. continue to fluctuate. I remember first learning about Hellebores a couple of 'blogging-years' ago, too. Now I can't do without them! Happy Bloom day:-)

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  35. Jodi, That settles it; I am definitely adding hellebores to my garden this year -- because when I arrived in Maine a few days ago, I had *nothing* in bloom. Congratulations on the arrival of spring in Nova Scotia; your flowers are lovely. -Jean

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