Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Spring Flowers

This is one of my favorite times of the year, when I get to go out and garden, and see new things popping up and growing larger each day.  I thought I'd document some things that are blooming now.

This is a Bergenia of some kind that a friend gave me a few years ago.

I don't know the names of my daffodils, but they have all been planted quite a number of years.  I'm glad so many of the different bulbs come up each year, since I don't plant any anymore.  Oh, I see Grape hyacinths in the background.  They have spread around a bit and seem to do well in the parking strip.

I have dug out quite a few irises to make room for native plants that will look good and provide for the pollinators for a longer season than irises, but I will keep some for the lovely spring color they provide.

Some Pasqueflowers are native, but these are not.  They sure are blooming well this year!

There are just a couple clumps of this Merrybells plant.  It's quite small, but I hope they self sow a bit.  I'd like to have more of them.

I'm trying to remember where I first saw and fell in love with Fremont's clematis. It could have been the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum's East Campus location.  I know I was tickled to get some there.  I have also gotten some from a local garden center.  They are more expensive, but the plants are larger.  This one has been in this location a year or two.

Isn't it unique?  I love the blooms!

The early spring blooms of the hellebores, which come in an assortment of colors are such a treat, and they look good for quite awhile.

It seems like these tulips look a little different each spring.  Some years they are a deeper pink than others.

The Phlox divaricata are opening their buds now.

Lovage is related to Golden alexanders.  It blooms earlier, but the blooms are almost identical.  I'm trying to remember if I've seen swallowtail caterpillars on it, as I have on the Golden alexanders.

The other day, someone asked me what I use for fertilizer.  Some years, I'll have enough compost to put on the beds in the fall, or find a container of manure of some kind that you mix with water, but other than that, I don't fertilize.  I like how this clump of tulips has so many blooms each season.

Just a few daffodils here and there provide lots of cheer while waiting for the other flowers to bloom.

I planted a few strawberries in a few different places a few years ago, and they are now spreading themselves around.  The birds and us should get a good number of berries to share this season.

I have mentioned my memories of violets in one of my grandmothers' lawn when I was a girl.  I like having some around.  I forgot what kind of caterpillars they are host plants for.  These are in the vegetable garden.  They seed some, but I don't let them take over.  I am feeling kind of bad, though, because our next door neighbor has a whole bunch of purple flowers in her yard from young violet plants.  She said something about not liking them a year or two ago.  Is it my fault?

This post ended up being a few days in the making.  After a number of nice, warm days, we are now in the midst of highs in the 50s, with rain off and on.  While I would rather have the 70s back, and won't even mind the 80s, which we could see in a week or so, the rain has been very good for the plants. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wildflower Wednesday

When I first got to thinking that this is probably the day for Wildflower Wednesday, hosted by Gail, of Clay and Limestone, I didn't think I would have much to share.  I went out this morning in the stop and start rain,  and took a few photos, but then, when it cleared up later in the afternoon, I took some more.  I found more than I thought I would, and included some plants that are not blooming yet, due to their foliage being just as pretty as their blooms. 

The blooms of the Pasque flowers are fading, but will turn into lovely plumes that last quite awhile.  This is the only photo I included that was taken while it was sprinkling.

I brought a wash tub with Phlox divaricata over here when we moved here over 12 years ago.  I planted some in the yard, and kept some in it.  While it is supposed to be a shade plant, the ones in the wash tub have continued to thrive in a good amount of sun.  I have been protecting it from rabbits, but am experimenting by leaving some unprotected now that a good sized patch has grown.  I was tickled to see some color on it today!

The Virginia waterleaf has pretty foliage, and small whitish blooms that I deadhead.  I missed some last year, and have a couple coming up in other places. 

I included this to see if anyone can help me identify these little volunteers.  I'm thinking they may be either Prairie dropseed grass, or Ridell's goldenrod. Oh, after reading this page, I'm leaning towards Ridell's goldenrod, because it said it something about being V shaped in the cross section.

Soon, the blooms on the Heuchera richardsonii will be yellow.  I'm glad I have several along the walkway to the house, because the foliage turns different colors, and always looks good, even in the winter.

 This is a Hepatica, or Liverleaf of some kind.

I was pleased that the little Jack in the pulpit came back.  I hope it grows and spreads some.

The name of this little plant is not coming to my mind.  I just hope to find more of these and others that will be going dormant by the time their slow to come up and grow plants need the room.  There is too much dirt showing in the area where these are.

I wish I would have gotten more than one clump of Bird's foot violet last year.  

I know this plant as Prairie smoke geum, but it has other names as well.  While not native to Nebraska, it is one of my favorite wildflowers.  The seedheads on this are fluffy and as interesting as those on the Pasque flowers.

The Virginia bluebells have their first set of blooms!

The native Columbine has a flower bud, which I may not have noticed yet, if I wasn't doing a WW post.  On the east side of the house, there are some that have crossed with this, and while their leaves are wider, the blooms are the color of these.  I'm trying to remember if they are larger.

Pussytoes are another one I love for edges, blooming or not.

I am looking forward to going to plant sales where I know native plants will be, and getting some holes filled.  Almost everything is up and growing, and we are getting some much needed rain.  Happy spring!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


I haven't done a Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day post in awhile. Since spring has been slow at getting here, I decided to post the blooms we have so far.

This was taken yesterday morning, after we had gotten half an inch of snow after a little over an inch of rain.  By the time I went out to take a few photos, much of it had melted.

Some of the Pasque flowers in my garden are native, but I'm thinking this is one of the non-natives.

The rest of these were taken this afternoon.  Now, this morning, it got down to 19 degrees, a record low for the date!  I didn't have the heart to take photos of the poor plants all shriveled with frost on them.  I am thankful it warmed up enough for them to recover, and they actually look pretty good now.

I haven't planted any bulbs for a number of years, but the ones I have have been very faithful in coming back each spring.


Grape hyacinths

 I'm not sure what kind of tulip this is, but it's my only clump, and they are small.

I don't remember the names of the varieties of the Daffodils or Hellebores, either.

Scillas sure are little cuties!

I believe this Pasque flower is the native kind.

The name of this little spring ephemeral is not coming to my mind right now.

I sure love Hellebores!  They are such cheerful things, and like the other plants survived the snow and cold.

The Virginia bluebells will probably be finished blooming by the middle of May, so I'll post a set of buds.

I usually am not a fan of two toned flowers, but I like this daffodil, hard as it is to photograph.

I am just so tickled that it is spring, and even the Bleeding hearts are about to bloom!  Now, I hope the warm days will soon be here to stay.  To those who live north of us, I hope all of your snow is melted if not now, then soon, and spring finds its way to your gardens!