April Bloom Day

Happy Bloom Day! This is the first Bloom Day of the year I’m participating in, for the simple reason that it’s the first one where I have any blooms.

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My April Bloom Day is first and foremost about Daffodils. We’re not yet at PDT (Peak Daffodil Time) in our garden, but we’re getting close.

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Unfortunately, we had a brief but heavy hailstorm just a couple of days ago, and it broke many of the Daffodil stems. I hate to see a good Daffodil down, though, so if you look closely you will see I have used various plant supports to keep the blooms off the ground.

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The Colorblends Mix of Daffodils planted in the Parkway Bed last fall are mostly still in bud. Above is one of the first Colorblends Daffodils to bloom.

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One of the things about planting a mix is that you may not know what varieties you’ve got. On the other hand, I’ve been pretty lackadaisical when it comes to keeping track of Daffodil variety names, so I suppose planting a mix doesn’t make much difference.

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I’m particularly fond of two color Daffodils for some reason.

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I like how these catch the afternoon light.

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Patches of Siberian Squill (Scilla sibirica) are blooming nicely in both the front and back gardens. Great color when massed.

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I’m fond of Squill because I’m fond of all blue flowers. Recently I became aware of concerns that Squill could be invasive in natural areas. In my garden it spreads, but not so aggressively. I would be more concerned if we lived in proximity to a forest preserve or something comparable.

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The very first Grape Hyacinths will soon be flowering. I have some of the straight Muscari armeniacum, as well as the variety ‘Valerie Finnis’ with it’s sky-blue flowers. I used to think that it was spelled ‘Valerie Finis’, and was named by a French horticulturist who was breaking things off with Valerie. Note that the Muscari leaves have been nibbled by rabbits.

2014-04-20 17.10.00 Tulipa turkestanica
Tulipa turkestanica

On the Tulip front, ‘Early Harvest’ is now done, but some of the Species Tulips are stepping forward, notably Tulipa turkestanica. (When it comes to Tulips, I am quite compulsive about keeping track of species and variety names.)

I like its masses of small white flowers with yellow centers. Although I sometimes get annoyed at this flower’s shyness – it’s quick to close up in cold or cloudy weather.

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The red flowers of T. praestans ‘Unicum’ are starting to emerge.

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And T. praestans ‘Fusilier’ are just starting to open.

DSC_0741The very first of the Prairie Smoke (Geum triflorum) are showing their flowers. I use them as an edging along the sidewalk for the Left Bank and Lamppost Beds. The ones right against the sidewalk seem to be the first to wake up.

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And – oh, joy! – the flower buds of the Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia virginica) can now be seen. Can’t wait until they are in full flower – they are my favorite among the netive spring ephemerals.

I’m going to leave the flowering woody plants for another post. In the meantime, thanks as always for Carol at May Dreams Gardens for hosting Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. Check out the link for more April blooms.

51 Comments on “April Bloom Day”

  1. My daff and squill photos are sitting in the camera. We are supposed to have temps near 80 today, so many things will be popping. A couple of flowering cherries in neighbors yards look really nice. Wish I had tulips, but I feed the animals enough as it is.

  2. Lovely daffs, ours are over now. I love your carpet of scillas, I am quite happy for them to be invasive just like the pretty chionodoxas. I used to get these two muddled up until I realised that the chionodoxas put their chins up and the silly scillas look down.

  3. It appears that we are at about the same place with our gardens this year. I suppose your Daffodils are now about peak after today? I would say today and tomorrow are the peak for us. My Grape Hyacinths are blooming, too, and the Scillas. I was wondering about their invasiveness. We do have a little forest patch in the back, but the Scilla are in a confined area bordered by a wall and sidewalks, so hopefully they won’t spread beyond that patch. How exciting that your Bluebells are about to bloom! Happy GBBD!

  4. Looks like spring has definitely arrived in your garden, Jason! My daffodils are pretty much finished, and even some of the tulips have already faded in this past week of warm weather. I like to plant the daffodil mixes, too; besides being a little cheaper, I like the variety and different bloom times. Like you, though, I try to keep track of the tulips, though as some disappear and others pop up in strange places, it gets harder each year. ‘Valerie Finis’–lol:)

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