Diary April 1, 2012 - Spring has Sprung!

As a kid, I eagerly awaited Spring after a cold, snowy, windy Ontario winter but never like I anticipate Spring now, as a gardener. SPRING is THE SEASON gardeners wait for. We dream about it, talk about it, plan for it and then relish in the first warm beautiful days. I don't know a single gardener who doesn't "tour" his or her garden as soon as the weather gets sunny and warm.

Let me show you what's blooming in my garden right now.

Hellebores are a plant that I only discovered several years ago, but many gardeners in North America and especially Europe and Japan, have grown and loved Hellebores for a long time. They are one of the earliest plants to flower, most starting in March already. They often grow curving downwards, which is a natural survival posture to protect against the cold. There are many different species and their common names are many, among them: Lenten Rose and Christmas Rose. Helleborus x hybridus was named the Perennial of the Year in 2005. Alistair from Aberdeen Gardens (one of the blogs I follow) did a lovely post on Hellebores - take a look:  http://www.aberdeengardening.co.uk/diary/index.php/2012/03/helleborus-party-dress-picotee/

Here is my only Lenten Rose:

A number of Daffodils have made an appearance:

Above is February Gold, a 10" cutie that I planted in the front yard.

16" Ice Follies has bloomed in the backyard as well as….

….the standard (but consistently dependable) King Alfred type.

I am still waiting for "Suzy", "Jetfire", "Hawera", "Thalia" and "Tahiti".
Daffodils are lovely, strong and the bulbs themselves are bitter, which is why squirrels leave them alone. I'll have to remember to fertilize the bulbs after they bloom.

I really worry that the (#$%^&^^%$) squirrels have eaten most of my tulips as a gourmet lunch!! Many of the upcoming tulip leaves are chewed and I have seen bulbs scattered all over the yard. Rotten little rodents…..Grrr……

Other spring flowers have made an appearance. Hyacinths are in the front yard and the back.
Hyacinths are fragrant, gorgeous and can be grown indoors and outdoors.

Scilla is a small bulb that naturalizes anywhere it pleases. It's short, dainty and a very pretty shade of blue.

And so day by day, I get happier and happier, as I can get see all my favourite plants coming back to life and can spend my days in my favourite area: the garden.

Oh!! Take a look at 2 visitors who came for a little swim in our pool for a few mornings a week ago but then disappeared!