Sunday, January 22, 2012

More spring bulbs

Every weekend I am checking my garden for new flowers.  Last weekend I noticed my yellow Snow Crocus  (Crocus chrysanthus) are all up!  For several years I wondered what the small clumps of thin green and white striped leaves were.  Then one year I just happened to look at the correct time and saw the flowers.  The flowers only last a few weeks and they are very short, so if your not looking carefully at the correct time you will miss them.

This weekend my large purple Crocus appeared.  I added them last year, and they ended up being planted among some Hyaciniths.  It is still too early for Hyacinth, they will come up after the crocus are done blooming.  If you look very closely you can just see a few crocus leaves in the lower left hand corner of the photo.

I also spotted some small clumps of Dwarf Crested Iris (Iris cristata) appearing around the bird bath.  There were not even leaves last weekend!  The Crocus mentioned above are also members of the Iris family.  

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Spring buds

The extended warm weather has drawn out buds on several trees and bushes.  If we have a hard frost now it will kill many of the buds and we will have fewer blooms in Spring.

Spring buds are growing out on the Cherokee Rose beneath last years thorny Rose hips.  This is the Georgia State flower.  I have only one plant, but it has grown up 15 feet into the trees and cascades back down to the ground.  When covered in white blooms it is really a sight to see.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Winter and really early spring flowers

The temperatures this winter have fluctuated quite a lot.  Days of 30 and 40 degrees are followed by days of 60 and 70 degrees.  Then its back to the 30 and 40 degree days agai  n.  It is no wonder leaves are appearing on bushes and emerging from the ground.  The Paperwhites finished blooming soon after Christmas.  Now stalks bearing nodding clusters of  Lenten Rose and daffodils are appearing between the green foliage in the back garden.

The flowers of the Lenten Rose (Helleborus orientalis) are shades of white, pink and purple with a greenish tinge.  Instead of petals, five large colorful sepals surround a ring of smaller cup shaped petals (called nectaries).  The flowers curves downwards, as if they are looking at the ground.  It is called a "Lenten Rose" because it blooms around the time of lent.  Another species is called the "Christmas Rose" because it blooms at Christmas time.

The bright yellow flowers of the Common Daffodils (Narcissus pseudonarcissus) bloom early.  These bulbs naturalize freely and spread across the garden and lawn!  Some of the bulbs in my garden are foundlings that came from old homesteads.  Even if it snows these flowers will survive and continue to bloom.

These are both images of in-progress journal pages.  I am working out the kinks with a new computer and scanning applications.  Unfortunately the programs on my old Power PC are not supported on my new Intel based Mac.