Garden Journal, May 1

I really do love my gardens. Planted over the course of three decades, I have at least 250 varieties of perennials in my yard. Interestingly, I don’t always have cut flower in my house; I’m far more likely to enjoy their beauty outside. I thought it would be nice to share a regular garden journal with you.
Flowering crab trees
Although I should have focused on planting trees many years earlier, I did plant four different flowering crab trees around the yard. This one, Selkirk, is far and away the largest. I think part of that is variety, but most of it is location. The full tree and the two closeups at left are the Selkirk. You can see that the bees think this tree is pretty lovely, too. The white and pink buds at the bottom are a variety that the nursery didn’t have named, so I don’t know it. I call it the bridal tree, since Margaret thought it looked like a bride when she helped me plant it.

I have four or five kinds of daffodils. They don’t all bloom at the same time, but I did manage to get good photos of these three varieties. My Poet’s Narcissus, which is probably my favorite isn’t open yet (odd, I think). The little double ones on the left are pretty sweet, too.

creeping phlox
The pink creeping phlox provides a really bright spot in the garden, but I really prefer the periwinkle one. Why? In both early morning and late evening, those flowers seem to glow in the dim light, drawing my eye every time.
pink nancyThe common name of this little sweetie is Pink Nancy. It’s one of the four varieties of lamium, or dead nettle, I have in my garden. Although far from the hardiest, this one is my favorite. Partly because it’s so pretty, and partly because I transplanted it from Amanda’s garden years ago when she was doing some garden re-design. I think I’m going to buy some more this year, if I can find it, to fill in the area I had always wanted this one to spread to. When I was a little girl, lamium fed my imagination, with each flower head resembling a tiny lady in a bonnet.

flowering quince
Japanese flowering quince is quite a shrub. It’s both quite hardy and really beautiful when it flowers. Mine rarely produces any quince fruits, and I wouldn’t really want to make quince jam if it did, so it works out well.
Virginia bluebells
Most of my yard, and therefore my gardens, are in full sun. I’ve chosen plants that like that kind of environment. After several years of this, I worked hard to create a shady area for a garden, since some plants simply can’t take several hours of sun each day. These little beauties are Virginia bluebells. They have very tender stems and leaves, which totally disappear after flowering.

bleeding heart
In my mind, no garden is complete without a bleeding heart. My white one blooms much later than my pink one. Personally, I prefer the more traditional pink.

pulmonaria or lungwort
This is one of my two varieties of pulmonaria. This springtime lovely got its common name, lungwort, from the spotted leaves, which bear some resemblance to lungs. I think one this plant’s attractions comes from the way the blossom change from pink to blue as they go from buds to open flowers.

Primrose & Lenten Rose

In front are some yellow primroses. Remember that old song, Primrose Lane? I think it came from these flowers, which have been developed in white, red, blue, purple, orange, and all shades of those colors. Primrose are early spring bloomers, and prefer at least partial shades. Behind the primrose are a beautiful Lenten Rose. Hellebores are sometimes called Christmas Rose. No matter what you call them, these lovelies are generally beginning to flower when there’s still snow on the ground, and unlike most perennials, they hold their flowers for a long time.

Although I plant mostly flowers, getting lots of my veggies through Canticle Farm, my local CSA, I LOVE my asparagus bed. Depending on the weather, I can sometimes harvest fresh asparagus for almost 6 weeks. YUM!

Your turn: what’s blooming in your garden?

4 comments to Garden Journal, May 1

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