Wednesday, February 27, 2013

I Spy With My Little Eye...SPRING!

We had a fairly nice late winter day on Sunday, so I grabbed the pruners and headed out to the gardens.  I tend to not do a lot of clean-up in the fall for several reasons:

12 Jan 2013

  • many things provide winter interest, especially the ornamental grasses

  • birds enjoy the seed heads of things like coneflowers

  • dead perennial foliage catches the snow and leaves, which gives them extra winter protection

But now it's getting close to the time when things will begin growing again and that dead stuff needs to go.  In past years, I've been late in cutting the grasses back and new growth has gotten a good start before I got to it. Not this year!

What I found as I did my pruning was that spring is definitely on the grow. I was surprised, actually, at the level of growth I saw already.  It's still February, for goodness' sake!  Our last frost date here is just before Mother's Day and that's the date most people use for planting annuals, so we're more than two months away from that.

Here are the signs of spring I found, in addition to the daffodils being up a few inches and the Dutch iris even more than that:

Tradescantia 'Bilberry Ice'

Wall Germander
Teucrium chamaedrys
'Summer Sunshine'

St. John's Wort is leafing out!
Hypericum sp.

Hardy Geranium
Geranium sanguineum 'Blushing Turtle'

Achillea millefolium 'Peachy Seduction'

Tall Sedum
Sedum x 'Autumn Fire'

Early tulips!

 And then there are the usual green growers that you would expect to see this time of year:

Lenten Rose
Helleborus x ericsmithii 'Winter's Bliss'

Double Snowdrops
Galanthus nivalis f. pleniflorus 'Flore Pleno'

Lords and Ladies
Arum italicum

Crocus chrysanthus 'Fuscotinctus'

Two days later, we had ice, but none of these things will be bothered much by it, thankfully.


Chris Tidrick said...

You are WAY ahead of us this year.

Brent Kryda said...

Very nice! You gave me a lot of ideas here. I also like to leave the seed heads on the dead flowers; not only do the birds like them, they may be among the only source of food for the poor things that have been forced to rely on gardens in the absence of natural prairies and woodlands. I tend to find that our native coneflowers and black eyed susans also look great with a little dusting of snow, almost like frozen candles.

Christys Cottage Wildlife Garden said...

Hi Kylee...this is my first time visiting your blog and I really enjoyed it. I also wait to trim some things for exactly the same reasons you gave. We had nice days this past Sunday and Monday so I went out and did a lot of trimming. I still have a lot to do but I made a dent in it. I'm starting to see signs of spring too and it's just so exciting! I look forward to following your blog and hope you visit mine!

Terra said...

Hi Kylee, don't you just love it when the tiny signs of life appear, even before spring? That is happening here too, with bulbs peeking up out of their pots.

Jason said...

I love the experience of cutting back the dead stuff and then seeing the tender new growth at the base of the plant. If the weather cooperates, I'll do some of that this weekend. Though it looks like you are a bit closer to spring than we are.

Mary Anne from said...

I sometimes prune my grasses late too and the new growth ends up getting a buzz cut! Luckily, grasses are tough and it all grows back!

Kylee Baumle said...

Chris ~ Sometimes things will start growing and then stagnate for awhile. The crocus seems to have done just that.

Brent ~ You're right! Anything that holds snow turns it into a work of art!

Christy ~ Thanks so much for visiting! I absolutely will go to your blog and check it out! Glad spring is showing up at your place, too!

Terra ~ I do love it. It's just one thing that helps me bide the time until it fully erupts!

Jason ~ If it weren't for these little signs I saw, you'd never really know that spring is on the way. The weather isn't exactly spring-like these days!

Mary Anne ~ That's usually what happens with the grasses here, too! This year I vowed to get a head start. ;-)

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