This morning was one of those on which I'm thrilled to be in the south, and no longer in New England! As much as we're dreading the "Arctic Front" coming our way, imagine having that weather from November until April!
Walking across the lawn, the sun was delightful, and it's as though the pansies knew they had to soak up the rays and store some warmth for the temperatures in the teens that are being forecasted for later this week.
These are the days when I become very protective of the bulbs that have started to emerge, and get nervous each spring that we'll have no flowers. Somehow, fortunately, I'm always proven wrong.
In the large south border, there are already lots of the miniature daffodils starting to sprout that have naturalized there over the past several years. It's grown into one of those displays that we can't readily imitate on our own, with leaves popping up in the crevice between a couple of boulders, in the midst of a ground cover, etc. It's really a show stopping display when all of the daffodils come into bloom, and across the lawn the color is repeated in the huge forsythia bank.
This year we've added in Narcissus "Petrel," which is supposed to do well all the way down to zone 9 (the top photo).
On the creek bank, the Stars of Bethlehem have started popping up, along with the leaf rosettes from the hyacinths. They are both favorites, and we added 200 more hyacinths this year, all in shades of pale yellows and white.
Leucojum (Summer Snowflake) is also showing signs of coming up, which excites me at the idea of seeing their beautiful white bell flowers again. They look very exotic, and I'm surprise more people don't use them, since they're pretty much foolproof. (The second photo down) They are in a bed with Guinea Hen Frittilaria (the bottom photo), which is another show stopper, but has a fairly short bloom season.
Fortunately the orange Crown Imperial hasn't broken through the ground yet, since I'm sure that will be this year's plant for me to be neurotic about......quick, get more pinestraw, blankets, perhaps a little heat lamp! Or perhaps my compulsion will show with the White Foxtial Lilies that we added to the pastel border. ....do you see a pattern here?
There are also 500 tulips that were planted in November, coming up as a border to the Antique Shades pansies that are in the beds around the house. We mixed three varieties, hoping to get a great blend along with the pansies.
It's only a matter of a couple of weeks ,I would guess, when we get the show along what we call the "Camellia Walk." It's a brick path that is almost completely enclosed with tall red camellias (Henry Kramer, I think). At their base we'll have a mass of white daffodils and deep blue muscari. Hopefully I'll get a better picture this year!
I promised the UPS lady that I would get a photo for her when the allium collection comes into bloom this spring. That was in response to her question, "What did you buy? A million onions? My truck stinks!" She wasn't really amused when I told her the garlic shipment was coming soon....
I guess I'm okay with a cold snap this week, knowing we'll have such an incredible show from the bulbs in six weeks or so!