It is almost Spring. Even though we had snow several days ago, the plants in our yard are telling me it is almost Spring.
My body also tells me winter is passing. It is difficult for me to tolerate the cold, so not much time was spent in the yard this winter, hence the lack of posts to this blog for a while.
The weather was beautiful here today- a lovely spring like day. It was good day for working in the yard and for wandering around to enjoy the landscape. Both working in the yard and taking pictures of the yard provide me with excuses to spend time admiring nature.
The modest green blooms of the helleborus will soon give way to seeding and be out-shined by the brighter colors of spring blooming flowers in the yard.
One of the first plants to bloom in our yard is the daffodil, providing bright splashes of yellow scattered around the yard.
The Pieris Andromeda is just starting to bloom. This clump of flowers is one of the first to open on the bush. They have charming bell shaped pendulous racemes.
Our Jordan’s Pride camellia got a severe pruning last year, so I was surprised to see that it had any blooms on it this year.
Tulip leaves are up. I have no idea what color the flowers will be, so it will be a nice surprise when they come up. One of the tulip leaves had to be rescued from an oak leaf. The leaf had grown through a hole in the oak leaf and was constricting the tulip leaf.
The dormant perennials in the container garden are starting to leaf out. The mums in the large pot are first. Years ago, when these mums were purchased, we did not know if they would survive winter here, but they return each year and provide a nice display of white blooms. The hostas in the long planter are just tiny little tips that were too difficult to photograph.
In the pot around a sedum plant, I planted bulbils collected from our Tiger Lilies. These were planted last year and they have just sprouted. They will probably have to be transplanted from the pot sometime this spring. Otherwise they will hide the sedum.
Today, I looked for and found Spring in our yard. I also found plenty of yardwork that needs to be done. This was the third day of cutting back liriope, which has to be done by hand and is not yet done.
The next garden project will be planting some gladiolus bulbs in pots. I’m thinking of layering them with other bulb to have an extended blooming time.
Years ago, one Tiger Lily plant was added to our garden and now there are many.
They self propagate nicely from bulbils that grow along the stems. I usually just let them fall to the ground where they will grow, but sometimes I collect them and redistribute them elsewhere in the yard or by giving them to another gardener for their yard. The bulbils are ready to remove from the base of the leaves when they roll off easily. Sometimes, if it has been wet for a while, the bulbils will start to grow while still on the parent plant.
I did not know that tiger lilies would attract butterflies, especially since we have other plants such as the butterfly bushes (Buddleia davidii) that are popular with the butterflies. But, yesterday when I went out with our old dog, there were butterflies dancing around, flitting from one lily bloom to the next.
A search on internet to verify the identity of the butterfly led me to a very nice website, Butterflies and Moths of North America, which has searchable image gallery. Ironically, the butterflies on the Tiger Lilies are named Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Butterflies.
It was difficult to get a decent picture of my moving target and with the bright sunlight washing out the colors and shadows obscuring the lovely blue spots on the wings.
There are many plants that attract butterflies to the garden and a good list can be found on University of Minnesota Extension website as well as many other websites. Many of the plants on this list work for our area even though we live in the mid-East region.