Yes, Mother Nature persists and thrives in our gardens, despite the vagaries of weather. Last year by this time the lilacs were finished blooming. This year I can't even see buds yet! But soon.
Here are a few bloomers and a few critters.
My favorite daffodil, N. t. 'Geranium. Such a fantastic fragrance. I bought another package of bulbs with my friend Carol last fall so I had even more blooms this year. More is always better, right?
|Narcissus tazetta 'Geranium'|
I know I said 'Geranium' was my favorite of the daffodils but recently I was at my daughter's place and spotted these lovelies. They're intensely fragrant as well. This fall I will have to be on the lookout for them. Anyone one know the name?
|Narcissus tazetta ... NOID|
|Rhododendron macrosepalum 'Linear'|
I'm not a huge Camellia girl but this stately gal is blooming her head off this year. It looks tropical.
I don't grow that many tulips but here's one that persists year after year. It's such a pretty thing!
And then there are these...
This is my favorite stage of this cute variegated Spirea.
|Spiraea x vanhouttei 'Pink Ice'|
A few more spring bloomers...
|Daphne x rollsdorfii 'Wilhelm Stacht' and Lathyrus vernus 'Albo Roseus'|
with Iris pallida 'Variegata' in the background
I'm not a huge fan of yellow but I love the vintage cowslips, especially because they're fragrant. I bought these last week at Home Depot and they work perfectly in this spot.
|Cowslips or Primula veris|
I'm still debating over whether or not to plant this new Mertensia maritima (from Far Reaches Farm) in this vintage metal trunk. I really want those blue leaves to stand out but because it's under the magnolia (M. stellata) they'll only get afternoon sun which might not be enough to satisfy it. Check out the full size plant on the Far Reaches Farm's website. Ooh, la, la!
|Under the Magnolia ... on the right are variegated Japanese iris (Iris ensata 'Variegata')|
|Brunnera macrophylla 'Hadspen Cream'|
This silly Phlox never disappoints me.
|Phlox stolonifera 'Sherwood Purple'|
I know. Why do I grow Vinca minor? Well, the flowers are pretty, you have to admit. Especially when all of the dead leaves from last year are removed from the pot it hangs in. Oops.
|Vinca minor 'Atropurpurea'|
|Darmera peltata in flower|
After years of disappointment with the new "improved" penstemons, last year I went for the tried and true species. Granted they don't bloom very long but they sailed through our cold, wet winter without missing a beat. Evergreen foliage and gorgeous spring flowers! Sorry, not the best photo.
|Penstemon rupicola or P. newberryi|
Who doesn't love a creeping sedum?
|Sedum spilling over its bounds|
Speaking of sedums, I found this little gem recently at the local Wilco Farms Store. It had a Little Prince of Oregon Nursery tag and has apparently been out for several years. But it's new to me. In my research, I found that there is some question as to its winter hardiness so this winter I'll probably protect the pot on my patio, just in case. Don't you love those tiny, variegated leaves?
|Sedum 'Little Missy'|
And more photos of sedums... I took these at a nearby nursery. Don't you just want these?
We had the cutest chipmunks all winter but apparently they didn't want to stick around for mating season. I think they're living in my friend Carol's garden which is good because they'll be safe there. Maybe they were pushed out by these cute Douglas squirrels. They're about half the size of a gray squirrel and every bit as feisty.
The frogs are up to their cacophonous shenanigans. There are tadpoles in the pond. Here's a little guy I spotted sunning himself.
And finally, a silly goldfinch trying to take a bath in the bubbler. Not the best photos but still, too cute!