Flower Friday

I’m a little late with this… Ok, a lot late considering it’s almost Saturday now!

This week we’ll have a mixture of flowers, wildlife and growth, purely because things are moving so quickly now that if I don’t post them, I never will because in a few days’ time it’ll all be different.

At the moment I’m really enjoying seeing things pop up, and the best surprise so far is discovering a Dicentra I thought I’d lost last year has appeared again! I’m just so pleased to see it 🙂

First we’ll start with the early spring bulbs which are now beyond their best – thanks to a day of rain… The season is moving on and leaving the Irises and Crocuses behind and the Narcissi, Daffodils and Tulips take their place.

The wonderful fresh leaves of Acer Katsura can now be seen unfurling, soon this small tree will burn like a fire towards the back of the garden.

The roses have all produced new growth – many I haven’t yet managed to trim either!, meanwhile Winter Jasmine continues to bloom and the Tulipa Tukestanica are beginning to bloom; I really need to add more of these for next year.

The trees and shrubs are really beginning to leaf up now, and the Fuji Cherry ‘Kojo-no-mai’ is no exception, I now have two next to each other after my original was crushed last year. I originally thought it was pretty much done for, but it’s survived and will add extra blooms and leaves to an otherwise bare spot.

I’m ridiculously pleased with how my spring/woodland/cherry border is coming along now. Each year I add more bulbs and it’s maturing nicely with the Geraniums providing much needed ground cover. Although in summer it does get a lot of full sun, so I need to move the Tiarella (that’s if it’s survived!!) to a cooler, wetter spot.
The first of the Aubrieta are just beginning to open up, and I can see the first leaves of the Dwarf Russian Almond opening; I’m looking forward to its fuchsia pink blooms in a few weeks.

This Pulmonaria I added late last year mirrors the purple of the Anemones in the Cherry border nicely, I prefer their unspotted leaves, but prefer the white blooms of the ‘Sissinghurst White’.

Continuing the theme of fresh leaves, the dwarf Lilac’s buds are fattening nicely and look like they will be opening soon, as are the blooms of Osmanthus which will fill the decking near the house with its perfume.

This Blue tit came in to get some food from the feeders and then noticed me invading its space, it quickly changed its mind and chose to check me out at a distance… Notice the Elder leaves are just opening… My small Elder cutting by the house has had leaves on it for a good while now.

Crocus Tomasinianus, Helleborus ‘Niger’ and Anemone Blanda provide some romantic splashes of colour in my spring garden…. You may have noticed by now that there’s lots of purples…

A couple of years ago I planted a few small sedum plants along the sloping border, only last year things grew so large in the Aster border that they were hidden from view… I’m surprised just how large they’ve grown, and although I haven’t seen blooms on them yet (or if they will) they do carpet the slope nicely, and I do enjoy the ornamental grasses against the deep reds.

A week or two ago I moved the Campanula near the house and planted some Snowdrop bulbs, a very unhappy, small Aquilegia and Fritillaria… I’m thrilled to see blooms already developing on the Fritillaria, and that the Aquilegia seems to be very happy in its new spot and I hope it grows much larger this year.

Muscari are blooming nicely in pots on the decking, and I’ve noticed that they’re so happy they’ve multiplied significantly! I’ll have to split them up into other pots and perhaps add more into the borders; so far those in the ground have not yet begun to bloom. Cream Beauty is also blooming in the shadier parts of the garden – I find it interesting seeing the differences between borders and bloom times.

Today I noticed new leaves on a couple of the Astrantia ‘snowstar’ I planted last year… I’d thought they’d died off over winter and was busy planning replacements and yet another attempt to fill the Buddleja border. I hope they do better this year, as last year they were somewhat pathetic. So perhaps with maturity, their performance will improve. If not I’ll think about moving them elsewhere.
Anemone coronaria de caen are making a break for it – usually they’re quickly eaten by slugs, so I’ll try to protect it with those nasty little green pellet thingies.
And finally, fresh leaves of one of my new Sanguisorba have opened, I love their ferny foliage! It’s just a shame they’re so small!

The furry leaves of Mecanopsis are a welcome sight; another plant I’d thought I’d lost over winter! I really, really hope I get some blooms this year!! Primula Vulgaris are blooming well and the plants have grown nicely since last year… Perhaps I’ll try propagating some more to add elsewhere.

I’ll end this post with another shot of the Tulipa Turkestanica, Anemone Blanda and Pulmonaria ‘Sissinghurst White’.

Copyright 2011 Liz.
All rights reserved. Content created by Liz for Gwirrel’s Garden.

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26 thoughts on “Flower Friday

  1. Your garden is looking lovely – I adore spring blooms every day there is something different to look at – just waiting for my daffs to open up – they are all on the verge – then it will really feel like spring has arrived.

    • Hi Elaine,

      I still continue to bypass the Daffs, although I did plant some Narcissi in Autumn – nothing special though! And I’m begging to realise just how cheerful they are and how much they’re impacting on the borders… Maybe I ought to try to get some more.

  2. I am enjoying the Spring awakening also..
    Thank you for sharing…!
    Take Care…..
    You Matter…..

    )0(
    maryrose

  3. Happy Friday! I enjoyed the pics of budding branches today! What climate zone are you in? I love the vibrant leaves on the Acer family, but I don’t think there are any hardy enough for my zone 4 garden 😦

  4. I have that same little red Sedum! For some reason, mine has never really taken of…it kind of just struggles along every year…but doesn’t die…just kind of “maintains”. I love Sanguisorbia too…the foliage is so pretty, especially in spring…sadly, mine gets so tall and spindly it flops all over…oh well.

    • Hi Scott,

      This Sedum has done really well, but the other ones just look like massive spiders with loads of bare legs dangling down the slope! You can see one in my previous post where I’d weeded the slope! Looks a real eyesore and I might cut them back, see if I can get lush fresh growth on them.
      I only got the Burnet late last year, so I’m not sure how tall it will get; whether it’ll flop over! We’ll see though! I got two varieties and so far the other has no new leaves on it… Hope it’s survived!

  5. Wow Liz, what a fantastic spring garden, so many beautiful blooms! You made me go and check my Meconopsis, I can see about half, so wonder if the others have died over the winter, never mind , as long as I have some of that beautiful blue! The warmer weather is bringing everything on in leaps and bounds, sometimes I just want it to slow down so that we can enjoy it all for longer! Love your blue tit!!

  6. Hi Liz,

    Well spring has sprung, hasn’t it?

    I have given up on tulips….they never do well here, due to the local squirrels 🙂
    I do like them, especially the dwarf varieties but I guess some plants are never going to work in a country garden, and tulips are one of them.

    I like the spotted leaves of pulmonaria…..I guess, for me, they show how the plant got it’s common name, lungwort !! It also stands out along the woodland walk…..you cannot fail to notice it with it’s large dotted leaves !!
    I do love the sissinghurst white though…..but then it is white, so I would, wouldn’t I?

    I thought of you when I found the lurcher. Beautiful dog, would have suited you but It needed a lot of attention initially…….at least it has a good home and I did not let it down 🙂

    • Hi Cheryl,

      I like to think spring us with us, but I’m still wary that we’ll get a late hard frost or cold temperatures so I’m holding back on cutting the dead growth just yet.
      I’ve never been a Tulip person, except the Turkestanica and the odd cheap bulbs I’ve bought on reduced around Christmas when I’m desperate for blooms! 😀 however this year I did add a lot of Blacks and Whites in various borders, as well as my mum giving me some ‘Tommy’ and ‘Maureen’ after her parents so I am expecting quite a lot of Tulips in the coming months, assuming they’ve survived the winter.

      Ah, you see I’m no fan of variegated plants – Euonymus, laurel etc… So the spotted pulmonaria don’t appeal to me… But I do like the white blooms so they can stay 🙂

      Sorry to hear the Rabbits have eaten your muscari! grrrrrrrrr. And such a pretty little bloom and multiplies so readily! Are you sure it wasn’t slugs/snails, as they’ve had a go at mine too.

  7. Well spring is certainly doing its stuff and your photos reflect this Liz. Lovely seeing some familiar friends in another garden :)The first flowers on my ‘Kojo-no-mai’ opened today. Astrantia are fairly hard to kill off – it was no doubt just settling in last year and will flourish this year.

    • Hi Anna,

      I’ll have to check my Fuji Cherry to see if any blooms/leaves have opened now – these photos were taken last Saturday so they might well have opened up by now 🙂 I hope so anyway.

      I do hope the Astrantia are OK… The ones I planted in the Aster border were fine in their first year but last year they were very unhappy – only one bloom on both plants! So I’m not sure what to do with those two, but I’m glad I haven’t lost these white ones in the Buddleja border too. I’ll see how things go and hope they perk up this year.

  8. Hi Liz, reading your post and seeing your photos inspired me to go and do some clearing in my garden so that I could see what’s going on! Result? Lots of new growth uncovered, loads of weeding done and a pair of very sore and swollen arthriticy hands!!! It’s definitely spring! 😛

    • Hi Liz,

      Welldone you on getting the garden cleared… You can come do mine now if you like! 😉
      Holding off on mine for a little while until I’m more confident that we won’t get more frosts. At tempting as the current weather is to get my seedlings out, hardening off and planted I know it’s still far too risky.
      I’ve one Sweetpea that’s determined to make a run for it. It must have a huge root system already because each time I nip out the top to stop it getting leggy, within a day or so it’s produced a new, huge side shoot! Beginning to think I should just go for it and see if it survives outside now.

  9. Dear Liz, I love this posting! Spring has arrived in all its glory in your garden. You have so many beautiful blooms and that bluetit is just adorable. How I miss England now that April is ‘nearly’ here (sorry for the misquote). P. x

    • Hi Pam,

      It seems things change on a daily basis these days. Forsythia is now out, and many blossoms too. Plus we’re having some very nice warm weather at the moment which is helping a lot of things along… Although I think it’s due to dip towards the weekend again.
      Saw my first Butterflies on Sunday, a Brimstone and Peacock at my parents’ plus hundreds of Ladybirds all over their garden in every border and in the lawn, on paths…. So amazed. And somewhat jealous as they don’t even garden for wildlife!

  10. I do love the miracle of spring, when plants that died back to nothing the previous year suddenly push shoots up from the earth. Two of our dicentra are emerging, along with the small astrantias which I hope will flower this year. Our aubretia, which I grew from seed last year, has clumped up beautifully and been flowering all winter quite peculiarly. A patch nearby that rambles down a set of stone steps has just burst into bloom too, so at least now ours is rather more seasonal than it was!

    I like the spotted leaves of pulmonaria, although not usually a fan of much variegation.

    • Hi,

      Spring has to be my favourite season, just watching everything growing is amazing. Although also frustrating at the same time as we wait, and wait for things to bloom! 😀
      I’ve a few Dicentra, with a white one the most advanved so far, and I think I want to add more under the cherry, and perhaps even in the front garden for a bit of later colour after the spring bulbs and Hellebores… Mmmmm now there’s a plan!
      I also grew the Aubrieta a few years ago, some have done very well and are now nice large plants, others not so well. But they are useful plants to have, and I do love their carpets of blooms! They do very well from seed and within just the one year mine were huge!

  11. Liz, your photos are always breath-taking! My tulips turkestanica are just beginning to grow and i’m so envious of your spring growth! Your osmanthus is a x burkwoodii isn’t it? I’ve just planted 6 of them and they’re covered in big oval buds too… I thought they would have bloom later in the season… like june… strange.
    I love the burgundy sedum against the stipa, I’d see some of your lilac crocuses amongst there, or maybe the buttery ones…

    • Hi Alberto,

      Glad to hear your Tulips have survived winter and I look forward to seeing them blooming soon 🙂
      I don’t know what the Osmanthus is as it was here when we moved in and it took me a year or two before I finally discovered what it actually was!
      Thanks for the suggestion with the Sedum. So far I’ve pretty much no spring bulbs in the slope at all – difficult to plant due to it being really bad clay mixed with bricks and all sorts of rubbish there. Perhaps this Autumn it’s about time I got something planted along there for next year.

  12. I love the splash of red the sedum brings to the garden, and its constrast with the grasses. Your Muscari look much better than mine. My Grandad always had them in his garden in London, but here they seem to languish, and those that do grow seem stunted. Perhaps they resent that our soil is on the sandy side. I’ve only seen a few this year, and I know I planted over 50 two years ago.

    • Hi Clare,

      It’s a shame to hear that your Muscari have disappeared… I’m unsure what soil they like but so far they’re ok in my clay and in my pots which are often very dry. Perhaps something ate them? I’ve only just discovered Muscari to be honest, and am hoping they will naturalise and we’ll have plenty more 🙂

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