Friday, April 15, 2011

GBBD: Blooms at Last!

I am so happy today is Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!  This April 15 has been a rather painful tax day, so I can use some pretty blooms to cheer me up.  Secondly, after months of stretching the meaning of "blooms," I am happy to report that spring has definitely arrived in central Illinois, and I can finally share some real flowers with everyone.

Since everyone has many places to visit today, I'll keep the words to a minimum and let the photos do most of the talking.  In order of appearance:

The first blooms to appear were the hellebores in late March.  After waiting for two years, I was excited to have more than one hellebore blooming. This is 'Red Lady,' I believe, who made her first appearance this year.

 Next came the daffodils at the very end of March. One soon turned into many.

A row of daffodils bordering the front garden are still in bloom.

Hyacinths followed shortly after, filling the air with their sweet fragrance. 

Some small shrubs were added in front of the house last fall including my very first forsythia.  This is a dwarf variety, 'Courtasol,' which is supposed to reach only two feet tall.

Later daffodils began blooming last week, including these 'Replete' daffs,
which seem to have multiplied in the front garden this year.

I'm still not sure how much I like these ruffled varieties, but in a close-up photo they look just as appealing as they did in the catalog when I ordered them.

'Pink Charm' in the sunny roadside garden.

And a different shy variety--any suggestions on how to get daffodils to face forward??

Fortunately, a few of them are facing the right way, revealing themselves as 'Poet' daffs.

In the shade garden, slender narcissus have just begun to bloom.  I wish I knew the name of these, because I would love to add more of them.

Not everything blooming in my garden right now is a spring bulb.  The flowering quince is putting on quite a show already, the earliest I can ever remember it blooming.

And in the shade garden, one of my favorites, Brunnera 'Jack Frost' is still growing, but already is covered with its dainty baby blue blooms.

With a nod to Pam's Foliage Follow-up,  I have to include one of the prettiest of the Heucheras 'Tiramisu,' which changes colors through the seasons.

It's too soon to plant most annuals here, but a pot of pansies and sweet little violas welcome you to my back door.

Back to the bulbs . . . although I try to record new plantings each fall, sometimes I am surprised in the spring.  I had completely forgotten about planting a few grape hyacinth last fall, these a mixed bag of varieties.  Clearly, I need to add more this fall.

The early tulips have just begun to open, earlier than usual but later than last spring which was unusually warm.  This is from a collection called 'Color Magic.' 

Even the best-kept records are not always helpful with tulips, since some only last a year or two and succession plantings often get mixed up with previous tulip plantings.  I'm pretty sure this is 'Pink Impressions,' one of my favorites.  It's a Darwin hybrid and much longer-lived than many tulips.  Bright sunlight is usually not the best setting for taking good photos, but in this case I thought the tulips seem to glow in the light.

The tulip show is just beginning, with more to come in the next few weeks.  I'm anxious to see this new addition this year, 'Fur Elise', come into full bloom.


The late 'Sunrise' are just beginning to bud.  I included this blurry photo not so much for the tulip as for the plant next to it--an astilbe. The shade garden is slowly putting out growth, and I'm especially happy to see the astilbe return since they are often temperamental in this area of dry shade.

Another almost-ready-to-bloom plant is the Bleeding Heart, one of my springtime favorites.

Soon not only will the garden be filled with color, but the skies as well. 
 Nothing says "spring" like the first color of the redbud.

Ah, glorious spring!

For more spring beauties from all around the world, be sure to visit our ever-gracious hostess Carol of May Dreams Gardens. 


  1. Good morning Rose, thanks to your planning, you've got a wonderful variety of spring bulbs - I do love the redbuds and yours is a wonderful specimen. I think you're going to enjoy that dwarf forsythia - it's planted in a public garden here and has kept nice and low for years now, with perky blooms every year.

  2. Well you definitely have LOTS of eye candy this morning. What a wonderful showing for bloom day!

  3. Glorious indeed! Oh my! I am finding it hard to leave this post and return to my frosty garden this am.

  4. Isn't it such fun to walk out and see all of these beautiful blooms! Happy GBBD.

  5. Glorious Spring indeed! Love the hellebore, and the flowering quince. Happy GBBD.

  6. All advice says not to plant flowers in a row, but your little line of daffodils is charming. I just love how they are cheerfully lined up! Now if you could get those lovely white ones to turn around and face forward.

    You have some pretty spring color.. love the quince!

  7. I feel your pleasure, as our spring sprang a few weeks ago.

  8. A glorious Spring has sprung in your garden Rose! I am so glad~it did seem to take an extra long time. The daffs are lovely and some of them just face that way no matter what I do! If it were toward the sun I would understand better! Happiest of GBBD to you. gail

  9. What a magnificent display of flowers and bulbs.
    I loved all of them, of course, but the things that especially caught my eye was..... The flowering quince..the Pink Charm daffodil....the Hellebores and the Hyacinths.
    It was well worth waiting for, wasn't it?
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

  10. What a wonderful and joyful post Rose! I am so glad Spring has arrived in all her glory for you.

    Before I forget, my professional advice regarding the daffodils facing in the wrong direction is...plant them the other way round next time...simple! :) :)

    I just love all your blooms and really like the frilly daffodils. The sweet little Violas have such pretty faces.

    My Quince is in full flower too, do you do anything with the fruit? Apologies if you have told us in the past. Mine always end up going to waste I'm afraid but I believe it makes nice jelly.

    The tulip photo with the sun shining through them is stunning!

  11. I have a flowering bush in my yard that I haven't known the name of and that looks like your flowering quince. I'm most captivated by all your flowers, especially the quince and the daffodils. It's all so very pretty.

  12. Gosh, spring has really sprung up there. I'm so glad for y'all. It was a long, cold, cruel winter. Happy Bloom Day.~~Dee

  13. Great to see flowering bulbs in action. Daffodils, hyacinth are amazing. You are growing very beautiful collection of daffodils. I wish i could grow tulips in my climate.

  14. Gorgeous stuff, Rose. It's a joy to see all of the happy flowers in your gardens. And, I chuckled a bit about that ruffled Daffodil. I've got those blooming in my garden, too. They looked so much prettier in the catalog. :))

    Happy Bloom Day!

  15. Beautiful flowers, and beautiful photos. I'm still waiting for spring to get here in northern Illinois --today in particular does not feel very spring like! We have temps in the 40's, winds in the 40's too, and now lashing rain.

    It's nice to look at your photos and remember that my flowering quince and bleeding heart will be blooming soon.

  16. Lovely blooms. I know the name of that daffodil, but I won't be able to think of it until mine bloom. the back of those daffodils are as pretty as the fronts.

  17. I'm also a central Illinois gardener, so I am curious as to where you live! My blooms look much the same as yours.

  18. Your garden looks wonderful now. I think your mystery daffodil might be 'Pipit.' I had a problem with daffodils facing the wrong way last year. They want to face the sun. My solution was move them to where they have to face me. I planted yellow perennial tulips in their vacated space.

  19. Wow - you have such an array of daffodils - all so beautiful, so gald i came over to take a peek from May Dreams Gardens! xoxo

  20. You have a lovely garden and such a nice variety of plants.

  21. What a treat, all these beautiful pics! Our spring is about 2 weeks behind yours, we are just at the crocus stage.
    kathi in NB canada

  22. Mr. McGregor's Daughter beat me to the name of your mystery jonquilla. Either Pipit or Hillstar. They are sisters and I forget which is which unless I'm looking at mine which is Hillstar.

    All your pics are just beautiful.

  23. Wonderful blooms! Love that back-lit tulip photo. Happy bloom day!

  24. I love the crocuses in your banner – squirrels at ours, and nothing else is blooming. At least our snow has melted as of today. Thanks so much for sharing your blooms - lovely images! This year tax day is on the 18th due to a federal holiday, actually.

  25. Rose there is so much to see where do I begin...the happy colors everywhere are such a welcome sight today...Happy GBBD

  26. Wow! Your spring garden beds are just so beautiful. The bed with the bench is so pretty.The heuchera has so many colors in it.Brunnera is always a spring favorite of mine. Love those little blue blooms.

  27. Stunned at how far I am behind you, so enjoyed your lovely spring show. You are blessed, Rose!

  28. Wonderful blooms Rose!! I really like that Replete daff and really think I need a quince...great plants. I was clueless it was GBBD!

  29. I picked this post coz I like your Hyacinths.

  30. Cyndi, Glad to know the dwarf forsythia there has stayed small--I don't want mine to get out of hand.

    Songbird, My flowering quince was planted long ago by my MIL, and it doesn't bear any fruit. In fact, I didn't know what it was for a long time till I recognized it on someone else's blog.

    MMD, Thanks for the i.d. on the narcissus!

    Thanks to all for your comments, and I hope that spring reaches those of you in colder climes soon! I'm trying to return your visit this time instead of writing individual replies. On Bloom Day I do enjoy visiting lots of gardens; I appreciate you stopping by.

  31. What a riotous display of colors! Aaahh! The lovely hyacinths! I haven't seen them in lots of blogs around. Yours look lovely. Do they bloom late? I mean when the temperatures go higher?

  32. All of those beautiful spring flowers would cheer up anyone! The shot with the Pink Impression tulips is so lovely with the light shining through them.

  33. Such pretty spring flowers! I love the white daffodils and narcissus. I hope my quince survived this long winter we have been having. After seeing your brunnera 'Jack Frost' I am thinking that I should go with this variety for my own garden.

  34. I love your hellebore and quince and Jack Frost and those unusual daffodils!

  35. You have some gorgeous blooms this month. I love all the different Daffodils and Tulips that you selected. That unknown variety is very sweet, hope sometone ids it for you. :)

  36. So many lovely daffodils ... that Hellebore makes me sigh in envy. If I can't grow them, I'm so glad I can enjoy them vicariously on the blogs of more northerly gardeners!

  37. My goodness Rose, you do have some beautiful blooms. I love all the daffodils. That Pink Charm is really pretty. Glad you are enjoying your spring blooms.

  38. Dear Rose,
    Spring is in full swing in your gardens. It is glorious. It seems as if I spend lots of time waiting for spring. Our grass is growing so fast so all the April showers we have received.
    Lovely seeing your flowers. Soon you will have bees and butterflies.

  39. I see spring is in full bloom for you! I know it was slow coming after seeing our southern gardens in bloom for so long. But it looks as though the wait was worth it. You have a wonderful show going on Rose! And now I miss my daffys and spring beauty's but thanks to your blog, I can enjoy your beauty on this hot Southern Day...

  40. Quite gorgeous! I'm with Skeeter, missing the spring blooms already. It's such a short season here.

    I'd have to say the forsythia is one of my favorite midwestern garden memories. So early and very cheery.

  41. Rose girl your garden is so far ahead of mine it is amazing ! I love all of your blooms and finally you have the hellebore blooming for you : )
    Those Poet daffs are gorgeous and I am trying to remember if I did plant some of those or not .. I know I wanted to because they are gorgeous !
    We are stuck in a cold wet cycle so our Spring will be very delayed .. then bang we will probably be in hot humid summer way too quickly .. one thing we can't control is that sneaky weather elf ?? LOL

  42. It's really spring, and we have blooms! Life is good.

    Have a blessed Easter! I am going to set up train tracks for our grandson's visit tomorrow, and hope to get back to your sustainable living project post.


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