As I became a little carried away taking pictures of the spring colour in the Curiously, Creatively garden, I now present Part II of my spring roundup. The only trouble is that it is difficult to tell where one season ends and another begins (if only weather was neat and tidy) so at this rate I may be shading into summer photos before I know where I am. It is always nice to see colour in early spring, but unfortunately I tend to miss some early shoots poking through as my gardening urge takes a while to revitalise after the winter.
Ideally I would have some early bulbs positioned where they can be see from the comparative warmth of inside the kitchen window, but I can’t find a way to do this. Maybe I need to find some large posts that I can plant up and position in the right location to bring spring colour into the house in the bleaker months. These lovely jasmine flowers which climb the wall over the kitchen window can of course only be fully appreciated once you’re outside! The heavy scent of the waxy blooms give a promise of the delights of the summer yet to come. I don’t know what the variety is since the plant pre-dates our living in the house.
I will start with daffodils and tulips as it really does feel like spring once they are both blooming. Sadly, the tulips don’t seem to remain in good trim for very long, getting blown and untidy looking quite quickly. We planted the daffodil bulbs in October 2010 (‘Thalia‘ variety) and some mixed tulip bulbs (yellow and reddish/purple) in November 2011.
In looking up those dates in the garden diary, I notice that we also planted miniature iris in 2010. These usually come up fine but I don’t remember seeing any this year (they’re supposed to be up in February/March). Having said that, the patch of ground does need some attention, so may be they have become overgrown by something else. I think that fate has befallen some of the anemone blanda that I have in there.
I was trying to create a woodland-effect in a part of the garden where a tree and some shrubbery had been cut down. I had envisioned bulbs and wildflowers on this uneven, slightly mossy patch. On the whole it is shaping up reasonably well, but it is a battle to keep out the wild bits that I don’t want (dandelions, bramble and buttercup) and to look after the desired bulbs and wildflowers.
Some things such as our miniature strawberry variety and forget-me-nots have seeded themselves in the patch, adding to the mix. The primroses that I mentioned in the last post have also settled in well after planting (I think I bought six plants) and add a lovely delicate, woodland tone. Other attempts to add plants, such as sowing cowslips have not worked so well.
The danger at the moment is that the forget-me-nots will take over the entire patch. This picture gives you some idea of how vigorously they can expand. It’s a bit difficult to get a picture that does justice to the blue of the flowers and this is my second attempt at a good shot. You can get pink and white flowers, though I am particularly fond of the original blue.
We have more shades of blue with the muscari bulbs coming up. I originally planted twelve bulbs (valeri finnis) in 2011 and these seem to have spread nicely. They are a pale blue so I was thinking of trying to buy a darker shade to disperse amongst the existing stock. I’ve seen gardens that have massed patches of darker blue, making a splendid contrast to daffodils and narcissus. Maybe that will be a project for the next spring flowering plans that we make.
I’ll take some more pictures when I have tackled the weeding and can see more clearly what tasks we need to be looking at this year. Any ideas for bulb varieties or wildflowers that we could try out, would be very welcome.
I can see that California poppy foliage is coming through strongly and a patch of bluebells by the potting shed is getting ready to burst into life. We do have a few cornflowers and poppies which I hope will have spread since last year.
Don’t forget to let us know how your spring growing is shaping up!