Sunday, April 1, 2012

Diary April 1, 2012 - Spring has Sprung!

As a kid, I eagerly awaited Spring after a cold, snowy, windy Ontario winter but never like I anticipate Spring now, as a gardener. SPRING is THE SEASON gardeners wait for. We dream about it, talk about it, plan for it and then relish in the first warm beautiful days. I don't know a single gardener who doesn't "tour" his or her garden as soon as the weather gets sunny and warm.

Let me show you what's blooming in my garden right now.

Hellebores are a plant that I only discovered several years ago, but many gardeners in North America and especially Europe and Japan, have grown and loved Hellebores for a long time. They are one of the earliest plants to flower, most starting in March already. They often grow curving downwards, which is a natural survival posture to protect against the cold. There are many different species and their common names are many, among them: Lenten Rose and Christmas Rose. Helleborus x hybridus was named the Perennial of the Year in 2005. Alistair from Aberdeen Gardens (one of the blogs I follow) did a lovely post on Hellebores - take a look:

Here is my only Lenten Rose:

A number of Daffodils have made an appearance:

Above is February Gold, a 10" cutie that I planted in the front yard.

16" Ice Follies has bloomed in the backyard as well as….

….the standard (but consistently dependable) King Alfred type.

I am still waiting for "Suzy", "Jetfire", "Hawera", "Thalia" and "Tahiti".
Daffodils are lovely, strong and the bulbs themselves are bitter, which is why squirrels leave them alone. I'll have to remember to fertilize the bulbs after they bloom.

I really worry that the (#$%^&^^%$) squirrels have eaten most of my tulips as a gourmet lunch!! Many of the upcoming tulip leaves are chewed and I have seen bulbs scattered all over the yard. Rotten little rodents…..Grrr……

Other spring flowers have made an appearance. Hyacinths are in the front yard and the back.
Hyacinths are fragrant, gorgeous and can be grown indoors and outdoors.

Scilla is a small bulb that naturalizes anywhere it pleases. It's short, dainty and a very pretty shade of blue.

And so day by day, I get happier and happier, as I can get see all my favourite plants coming back to life and can spend my days in my favourite area: the garden.

Oh!! Take a look at 2 visitors who came for a little swim in our pool for a few mornings a week ago but then disappeared!


Mario said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mario said...

Looks like your Spring is off to a fine start! Love those Hellebores. They are one of my favorites.

Astrid said...

Hello Mario
Nice to hear from you! yes, I think I'll check out some more hellebores at the nursery and pick some up. Weather today is delightful - 12 degrees C and sunny. I'm heading out now and plan to come in by dinnertime!! have a great gardening day. Astrid

Alistair said...

Hello Astrid, I am always going on about Spring as if I had never before experienced it. Great Daffs in your garden, I think I like all Daffs except for King Alfred. I have just become reacquainted with Hellebores and have really enjoyed them. I really, really appreciate that you would mention me and add a link to my site, thank you.I see you also had your first visit from the Ducts.

Astrid said...

Hello Alistair! I think all gardeners get a little over-exuberant about Spring. We love to be outside and it's finally warm enough to be there! Your hellebore photos were exquisite and certainly deserved a mention. I will probably show the other daffodils as they emerge. Happy gardening!

Lona said...

Hi Astrid. I am loving all your blue Scilla. How pretty! Your Hellebore's are so lovely.It does look like spring in your garden with all of these blooms and your pretty daffodils. Have a Happy Easter weekend.

Foxglove Lane said...

I agree Spring is amazing, however dark and gloomy we are after winter we are cheered by it. Love your delicate spring blooms especially the dark hyacinths, how beautiful, your selection is:~)

Astrid said...

Hello Lona!
Glad you enjoyed the scilla. It's a pretty little self-seeder. Hope you have a lovely Easter as well. Weather is gorgeous here today. - Astrid

Hello Foxglove Lane!
Thanks for taking a look at my blog! I'm pleased you liked the hyacinths - I have 4 little clumps in bloom now. Their fragrance is overpowering in the house but gorgeous outside as I pass by. Have a lovely weekend - Astrid

Nadezda said...

Astrid, happy Easter!
I like the blue flowers, like scilla,
they remind me the blue sky.

debsgarden said...

I really like your blue scilla! I am glad your spring has arrived. Even in January I am out searching for signs of spring here, so I can imagine how precious is the sight of your first spring blooms, after such a long wait!

Astrid said...

Thanks Deb! Every day more and more daffodils and hyacinths open! It's very exciting. Darn squirrels have eaten all my tulips I'm afraid (or maybe they will still come up - fingers crossed!). Thanks for your comment.