It has been raining almost every day for about a month, and we are sick of it, as you can see from this extremely witty Facebook post.
Even someone like me, who welcomes a rainy day as an excuse to quilt and read, is getting weary. We had one sunny day last week, and the air was ringing with the sounds of lawn mowers. I was able to edge the sunny border, fighting with the witch grass all the way, and started to replenish the soil in the newly installed raised bed. Rainy today, Sunday, and predicted to go on until some time on Tuesday. And to top it off, we are still in a rain deficit for the year!
On another note, garden bloggers’ Bloom Day has come and gone yet again without a post from me. Here is a reconstruction, and a list from 2014 (another of those pieces of paper that floats around the kitchen counter until needed).
Early May 2014
- Cherokee phlox
- False Solomon’s seal
- Ghostly bulb in white garden
- small white allium
- mazus reptans
- tulips (going by)
- columbine and wild columbine
- sweet woodruff
- Topolino (I think) daffodil in sunny border
- Star of Bethlehem
- Viburnum ‘Shasta’ and neighbor’s pink dogwood
- bleeding hearts (white and red)
- white azalea
- garlic mustard
- geranium macrorrhizum ‘Ingwersen’s variety’
- lily of the valley
- pink azalea
- coral bells
- Sun Dial narcissus
This year is much the same, except that mid-May this year found nary a trace of the mazus and wild columbine, both lamented. I think the hellebores might have crowded out the columbine. The Topolino daffodil again was the last to bloom and is most welcome.
‘Sarah Bernhardt’ is in bloom, as gorgeous and over the top as ever.
Equally magnificent in a very different way is the Jack in the pulpit that either Becky or Judy passed along to me. It seems to be very happy in this cool, wet spring.
Thanks to advice from Adrian Higgins, I sowed my Shirley poppy seeds in February and hoped for the best. They were just lying around, so why not give it a go? Lo and behold, it worked!
This gorgeous red is a good contrast with the blue columbines that have taken over the garden (their days are numbered if it ever dries out a bit).
A drizzly morning is good for the garden and good for garden photos. In bloom today, after a very warm week last week and just a bit of welcome rain this week, are:
grape hyacinths – modest little bulbs but I want to add more for a sea of blue. I like the contrast with the red blossoms from the maple.
hellebore – one of the most satisfying of perennials, these come in several colors and postures
daffodils – the cutting garden is doing well (I’ve already cut several dozen in the last few days), and more are in bloom under the oak tree and outside the shed. I need some in the front garden.
chionodoxa – my plan for a sea of blue under the hydrangeas is slow to mature, but I’ll keep adding bulbs each year
speaking of blue, the blue anemones seem to be the only ones to survive. They do well in sun and are not showing at their best on this cloudy morning. They would look great under the maple tree. Next year?
and finally, leucojum ‘Snowflake’ – this one is in the bed with Bishops weed, so I rooted out both the weed and some of the leucojum a year or two back. It seems to be thriving again. It makes a very sweet tiny bouquet that allows you to see the delicate green lines on each petal.
And, of course, dandelions, myrtle and forsythia, all appreciated but too common to record. Otherwise, plenty of buds are swelling – not just the maple but also the bottlebrush buckeye and the hydrangeas.
So, it’s Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, but all we have here is a blanket of snow.
Instead, here is an orchid I saw two days ago at the Lankester Botanical Garden in Costa Rica.
On January 15, the only things in bloom were the usual suspects, but they were welcome. Winter aconite (which has been in bloom for about a month), hellebores, and crocus ‘Claret’ tried to brighten the gloom on this mild, cloudy day.
With rain in the forecast, I took Adrian Higgins’ advice and sowed some Shirley poppies that I had on hand. No telling if they will take, but worth a try.
The columbines are beginning to go to seed. Clearly, I sprinkled the seed everywhere last year, since they have now popped up along the walkway and in the erstwhile white garden, where their tall, airy dark violet (and occasionally white) blossoms are just the right scale for the space.
Speaking of columbines, Santa Rosa Gardens enticed me with an offer of aquilegia ‘Songbird’ mix free with a hosta order, and I bit. Here’s the lovely white bloom that resulted, somehow bigger yet more delicate than the ones that self-seed everywhere.
Also in bloom: amsonia, baptisia, sages, peonies.
This yellow iris always confuses me – is it a Japanese iris? or Siberian? Either way, its cheddar yellow color is a little hard to use. It shrieks next to pale blues.
The coral bells are still going strong, and the azalea behind them is beginning to fade. ‘Zepherine Drouhin’ was glorious this spring, with pale blue pansies and a few allium triquetrum alongside. Today there are drifts of petals on the ground.
The tradescantias have a life of their own. I know I planted at least one in front and another one or two around the oak tree, all probably from Mom. Now they show up everywhere in various shades of blue. The one on the left popped up by the fence in the corner under the crepe myrtle. Next to it is the slightly darker blue under the oak.
They are loving this cool, wet spring.