Monday, May 4, 2009

Discoveries on the Garden Floor

It's been a weekend full of friends, family and food - an all-round excellent time. Have managed to get into the garden for several hours each day - still a little daunted by all the work that remains - but I am making progress.

Very weird discovery yesterday. On the pea-gravel pathway I found five gigantic bumblebees dead within a 1 foot square area. I've never found anything like that before. Almost looked like a bar-room brawl gone bad. Went back this a.m. to take a shot, and just two carcasses remained. Obviously the other three were carted off.

Have stuffed this post with a bunch of shots just so you can see the floral action in the garden. Not all photo fabulous - but all are a page in what's happening just now. For instance, here's one from the woodland section of the garden - our official Ontario Provincial flower Trillium grandiflorum. Will have to figure out when the sun comes around to that side of the house to see if I can get a little more light on it. There's nothing prettier than seeing an old forest floor dotted with these lovely white blossoms.

And Dicentra 'Gold Heart' - I think that this plant is just a party in a pot.

Two of the pretty blue-blossomed plants - wind blowing - focus not perfect, but what the heck - Here is Brunnera macrophylla and I fear the only Brunnera that may have made it through the winter - several of the newer variegated varieties including 'Jack Frost' and company appear to be M.I.A.

This is Omphalodes verna it is a runner and spreads a fair bit. However, with pretty blue flowers like this, it is an easy and well appreciated pass-along plant.

Well, here are the tulips again. Still don't look like the catalogue photos, so I'm not sure about the i.d., but they're so pretty, it just doesn't matter.

The shocking red orange are T. praestans 'Fusilier'. I'm a real sucker for a multi-stemmed tulip.

And, of course that pretty yellow import from Europe, Taraxacum officionale. Such a bright yellow colour, and found in so many unexpected places!

Here's my little white azalea - not lots of bloom, but what there is - is very pretty.

Fortunately the squirrels left a few quince blossoms behind for me to enjoy.

Because of all the shade in my garden, I'm a big fan of Carex - this is 'Ice Dancer' popping up through last year's spent blades.

C. 'Bowles Golden' coming along in my front bed.Nothing like spending the weekend on my knees to appreciate the little early blossoms of the C. velebit humilis. I've misplaced the tag for this wonderful Epimedium - a great buy from the Royal Botanical Gardens many years ago - and for the folks who are able - this year's sale is this week!

This is Ipomopsis rubra - my unofficial Dr. Seuss plant, cool leaves, shocking red orange flowers. After a quick internet check (so you know the next bit of information must be rock solid) it seems that this biennial is native to Texas. I purchased mine from Belinda at Triffids, had one season of continuous blossom - and then was over the moon to find it had seeded. Figuring it might be a bit iffy coming from such a warm climate I left all of the little volunteers. And much to my surprise, they all made it. May have to be a bit careful about letting them go to seed this summer...if this is what I get from just one plant.....scroll down to the next photo: each little bit of green poof is an Ipomopsis.

and that's just one garden - the first shot was taken in another.
Below, more plants to pass along - Polygonatum odoratum 'Variegatum'.

Never knew that the petals of Lamium flowers looked liked old fashioned parchment note paper.

The grass is in relatively good shape - unfortunately we spread compost/manure that must have been full of chick weed. With the ban on chemicals, I'm really thinking there's a lot of lawn that's going to have to be something else entirely over the next few years....but in the interim, if anyone has an idea other than raking and pulling to get the chick weed out, I'd really appreciate it!

All sorts of ferns are popping up - I believe this is Athyrium 'Lady in Red'.

A fern that came with the garden....

Here's my Adiantum pedatum - sort of feel I've photographed my dear Maidenhair in her lingerie
I'd been quite proud of the fact that I'd successfully wintered over Heuchera villosa that I'd grown from seed. It was completely evergreen until it wasn't. However, fear not, I see a wee speck of green toward the bottom of the frame!

And on that scruffy note - I promise to post tomorrow.


Jim/ArtofGardening said...

Nice Taraxacum officionale!

I have to get my hands on some trillium. I say that each year and never do. Your garden's looking great.

Kim and Victoria said...

Your plants are gorgeous. I've always loved trilliums.
Going to look for some of that ipomopsis rubra.

Barbarapc said...

Thanks Jim - should you ever be in town, I've got lots to share!
Kim & Victoria - if you can't find the seems to be very, very easy from seed!

Gail said...

Barbara...gorgeous carex and the fronds of the ferns are delicious....Would you say the carex you have needs moisture? I agree the tulips are indeed catalog beautiful...Isn't spring grand! It seems to be in your part of the garden! gail

Glädjekällan said...

Lovely 'Springphotoes'


Frances said...

Hi Barbara, what an enjoyable romp through your emerging garden! The ferns are wonderful and your captures do indeed portray the magic of the unfurling. The grand trillium grows here also, though not as heartily. The epimedium is a stunner. Love it all and look forward to more! :-)

Gardenista said...

My favourite of all your pretty flowers there is the quince. I admired these so much in the mild island climate of BC. I think one always wants what they cannot have though, and I'll have to move to grow one of those. Your tulips are lovely.

Barbarapc said...

Gail - all the carex I grow do well with little water - I've got very sandy soil. I had one species variety - name escapes me with very coarse broad leaves that needed far more water than I'd provide - otherwise every single carex in my garden must do just fine in drought conditions.
B. Thank you!
Frances - glad to oblige - and so pleased to have something to show. The wind was chilly today - good for keeping the tulips in blossom.
G. Sooo true about wanting what you can't have - after I saw the roses in Oregon, I lust after their weather and those scented beauties.

easygardener said...

That was a lovely selection of flowers and foliage. For the last two days the air here has been filled with dandelion seeds floating in the breeze. It's like an alien invasion!
I've just bought Trillium grandiflorum so I hope it reappears next year. I find them hard to establish, which may be a sign that I should stop trying (lol).