susansflowers

garden ponderings

Hellebore

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SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAPink flower buds are peeking from the fern fronds.  The distinctive leaves of hellebore confirm that the young plant has survived the winter.

I found these flowers in the garden of an elderly neighbor.  After she passed, her son let me dig up a plant for my garden.  The mother plant is not in a fenced area, and I’ve seen many deer pass through those flower beds. I need to get brave and plant one of these outside my deer-fenced area, to prove to myself they are deer resistant.

Once I tried to give a vase of these flowers away, and learned the hard way that they are not ‘cutting’ flowers. They look best on the plant and in the ground. They merely droop like sad-sacks when in a vase.

The fern pictured  trying to hide the hellebore above is one of a group of ferns that took up residence at the edge of an east-facing deck.  I see them in nurseries, but find them to be almost a pest here.  They require pruning a couple of times a year, to remove dead fronds and show the flowers I have planted underneath.

Well, I just noticed that I already had a post on hellebores.   These are some of the same comments by me.  I think I’ll leave both posts as a reminder to myself of ??

Have spent some time recently, on non-rainy days, pruning and weeding.  So much to do.  Dry days in late winter have been the best time to get a jump on busy spring days.  Still have plants I bought last fall, to get into the ground, and a number of other plants to move around while the rainy season is still here.

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Cedar in Daffodils

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Cedar in Daffodils

Tree seedlings come up in my flower beds every year. For the past few years, I have transplanted them around the land. I do have one small tree that grew from a transplant maybe 10 years ago.
Yesterday, we dug up 4 baby cedars, and brought netted tree tubes to protect them from deer and other animals the first years of life. We also found a number of other transplants from previous years, Douglas firs and cedars. Just one dead tree was found.
The daffodil bulbs fare just fine even when something is dug up around them. I have separated daffodil bulbs in the early spring, but don’t suggest it as a rule.

Snowdrop

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Snowdrop

In between rain storms, I noticed this snowdrop flower. I thought I had planted some of these bulbs, but totally forgot where. Finally, I found it, outside a fenced area, because I thought the deer & rabbits would not eat them.

Many years ago, I had a small clump of snowdrops that were the first flowers to come up every year. They did not seem to multiply like daffodils, bluebells and many other bulbs did. This lone survivor is showing no signs of multiplying either.

The daffodil leaves in the background do keep multiplying, though.

First Crocus bud

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First Crocus bud

The first crocus bud, what a pleasant surprise on a very chilly day. I don’t think the temp went over 38 degrees. When I looked closer, and brushed away dead leaves, there were many more crocus leaves sprouting. The bulbs are planted around roses, hyacinth and many other perennials. These multiply so easily, the babies get moved around most every spring.

Hellebore

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Hellebore

I think this is such an interesting plant, it blooms at a strange time of year and the flowers hang down in an odd way.
One time I tried to cut the flowers for display in a vase, and that turned out to be a bad idea. The stem wasn’t strong enough to hold up the flower, and I wanted to say “stand up straight and hold your head up” to it.

I like the fact the leaves stay green all year. The good-sized, older leaves sort of mat down and keep the ground cover at bay.

A year ago (or so), I dug up a pink-flowering hellebore from the yard of an elderly neighbor. It isn’t flowering yet, so I was wondering if this is another example of the white flower of a species blooming at a different time than the other colors. I have to watch this year to see if the other white flowers bloom before the other colors. I’m thinking of examples as crocus, hyacinth, iris and armeria.

Bergenia

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Bergenia

These are early buds, and the first flowers have opened.
A low-growing perennial, that stays green all year in my area. It lives in a morning sun area near a deck and the side of the house.
I saw a hillside of these flowers when we were in Santa Cruz, near the beach. They appeared to be growing wild, just fine on their own. Just beautiful.

A couple of years ago, I separated and transplanted a big clump of these plants. Of course, the plants nearer irrigation did better, but these are quite hardy and all the plants moved survived.
I cannot remember where I got my first start from. Am happy to share with any who read this. Just email me.

Violets

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Violets

The first spring violets are finally here! Last year was so mild, these were blooming at the new year, this year is much colder and they have finally arrived. The first real harbinger of spring to come.
Since I do not have any snowdrop bulbs, these are the first flowers here.

I got my first shovel-fulls of violets from an elderly neighbor about 30 years ago. I loved how it grew around her shrubs. If it gets water or shade in the summer, it will stay green. I don’t worry if I dig up the violets, as they are very hardy, but not too invasive. They look beautiful under rhododendrons.