Sunday, March 29, 2009

Gearing Up

With all of the up and down temperatures, spring is progressing cautiously, but to my mind that is better than 80's in mid-March, followed by a freeze that catches everything out.

Our Virginia bluebells is going to bloom this year. It took the last year off after the move, so I was very thankful to see buds on it this year. I think the new leaves are beautiful.

Another true blue, Jacob's Ladder (Polemonium reptans) photographed on Thursday. I got my first start of this plant from seeds received from the NC Botanical Garden, and this plant has proved altogether delightful. It's much tougher than it looks, and like Phlox divaricata will seed itself around a bit.

On Saturday

An especially colorful version of woodland phlox, 'Louisiana'. If you look closely you can see that the petals are actually swirls of many different colors.

I love the new leaves of Oak Leaf Hydrangea: spring green, quilted and fuzzy to the point of being cottony.

Look, 'Blush Noisette' made it through the winter!! I was afraid she was a goner. She is new to my garden, just planted last fall. I've read great things about this rose in the South, so I hope she can get established.

The rose below is a thornless hybrid Gallica, once-flowering and fragrant, that is covered in purple blooms in spring. I received it in a trade last year and it grew by leaps and bounds. Its identity is unknown. It was given the nickname 'Delia's Purple' by the original source, a lady who gardens in Louisburg and Raleigh.

'Climbing Old Blush' looks ready to put on a show this year. She's evergreen in any case, but she's been putting out a lot of new growth and even some buds.

I love Blue Violet. It can spread as much as it wants, the more the merrier. I love the purple color of the flowers.


  1. Lovely blooms! I hope my woodland phlox I put in the ground bloom and spread some this year.

  2. You have lots of greenery unfurling around the yard. I love Polemonium, with their pretty blue flowers, but mine were covered in a bad case of powdery mildew, so I had to remove them. Your time lapse effect of the buds opening shows how sweet the little flowers are.

  3. Nice to see my neighbor having such a nice showing of plants blooming and coming back. I worked in the garden all day. Every bone in my body hurts.

  4. So pretty! I love those delicate spring blooms.

    Spring has been temporarily preempted here with snow and freezing temps!

  5. Your woodland flowers are so pretty.

    Your roses look good. I hope my Gallicas survive the transplant. I had meant to replace Charles DeMille this spring but haven't gotten my order in yet.

  6. Sweetbay,
    Your plants look so good! I'm glad I've got your blog on my blog roll as there is always something intertesting going on there!

  7. Yeah, all this warm weather makes me a little nervous. I keep remembering that terrible late freeze we had a few years ago. Does your Cl. Old Blush bloom a lot? I have it too but it has never bloomed heavily for me.

  8. Sue it'll be interesting to see the difference in bloom time between our climates. Yours may grow more from year to year than mine, since heat stops them.

    Hi Northern Shade, I haven't had a problem with mildew here, but Jacob's Ladder may like our heat. I've noticed the only time my Phlox paniculata "David" had mildew is when temps are cool. I'm envious of your Campanulas!

  9. Anna I've been working in the garden too, clearing up last year's skeletons and pulling weeds. Feels good doesn't it, even with sore muscles.

    Gardengirl, snow must be harder to take the later in the year it is. When we lived in Pennsylvania it seemed that spring would never come. Real spring didn't arrive in western PA until May, but when it did arrive, it was glorious.

  10. Hi Marnie, Charles de Mills is so beautiful. That's one I'd like to try. I'm still experimenting with which classes of roses do well here and which don't. 'Dehlia's Purple' is one of those hybrid China/ Gallicas that likes the South. I was lucky enough to get it in a trade from a lady that lives in Garner. I've seen it blooming in person in her yard and it's beautiful. The Gallica genes lend such wonderful color.

  11. Hi Randy, thank you! I'm glad I found your blog too -- you have such wonderful photographs and I like your philosophy.

  12. Hi Phillip, yes, my Climbing Old Blush does bloom a lot, and has good repeat. I got mine from Niche Gardens. That and R. palustris scandens are my best bloomers.

    Here's a couple of pictures from last spring:

    Climbing Old Blush in mid-April

    Climbing Old Blush in late April

  13. Thanks for leaving a message on my first post! Sure looks like Spring has arrived in NC - enjoyed the beautiful photos of your garden.

    W2W and I planted some grapefruit and plum trees a couple of weeks ago. Amazingly, one plum treee is already loaded with small fruits and we have one little grapefruit growing. The other grapefruit tree must be confused as it is ready to bust out in blooms, again! Maybe it has something to do with all the rain we have had recently.

  14. Sweet Bay, thanks for stopping by and commenting on my husband's post. He's new to the blogging world and can use some encouragement. We have some of that phlox in our front flower bed. It was the only thing blooming here at this house when we first moved in. I've never been one for formal landscaping, so I just let it have its own way with that bed. Its name means "spreading flame," which obviously has nothing to do with the color. Must have something to do with its ability to re-seed itself and take over (or maybe the passion one develops for it). ;>]

  15. Hi SAM, I'm glad you come over, and I enjoyed your first post!

    My FIL's MIL used to live in Florida and my FIL was always telling us about all of the fruits she grew in her yard -- oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, kiwi -- things we cannot grow here. We had a tangerine tree for a number of years that my FIL brought from Florida and did those flowers ever smell good -- like jasmine.

  16. Hi WTW, I didn't know that the name meant "spreading flame". I wish my phlox spread like flame, lol. I have to transplant seedlings around where I want, as it has a limited growing time here (mainly late winter, early spring). It's worth the effort though, as it's wonderful in bloom en masse. A beautiful native plant.


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