Now that the Snowdrops are done, I’ve been spending a good deal of time inspecting the progress of all the other bulbs. While it’s still early spring hereabouts, there are a few blooms out there.
Tulipa kaufmanniana ‘Early Harvest’ is blooming a bit later than usual, but it’s color is as orangalicious as ever. When I took this picture they were closing up for the evening.
But here’s an open flower.
Some of the Glory-of-the-Snow have started to bloom. There isn’t that mass of blue effect I had hoped for, but maybe that will come in time. There are still plenty of flowers that have yet to open. Also, some flower buds have been eaten by rabbits.
Apparently there is some disagreement as to whether Glory-of-the-Snow is its own genus, Chionodoxa, or just a section of the genus Scilla. So I’m not sure if I should identify mine as Chionodoxa forbesii or Scilla forbesii.
Speaking of Scilla, our Siberian Squill (Scilla sibirica) has also started blooming, mainly in the Back Garden. You can see the family resemblence to Chionodoxa, but Squill flowers face downward, while Glory-of-the-Snow has upward-facing flowers. Also, Squill is less palatable to rabbits.
The ‘Purple Sensation’ Alliums (Allium hollandicum) are coming along. In fact, they seem to be spreading like crazy. This may be partly because I leave the seedheads up as long as they can stand. An odd thing this year is that the rabbits seem to have nibbled almost all the tender leaf tips, which I never noticed before. Perhaps Allium leaves are the new avocado toast for rabbits.
Now we come to the part where I try to figure out where all those bulbs went that I planted last fall. For instance, the A. karataviense above. I can only find 7, but planted 25. I also planted 5 ‘Mount Everest’ Alliums (A. stipitatum), but have not a clue as to where they are. I could go on, but you get the idea.
One thing I’m excited about is all the Tulips and Daffodils interplanted in the Driveway Border. Blooms are still a ways off, but all the emerging foliage looks promising.
How far along are your spring bulbs at the moment?
Ugh! I went out and peered anxiously at the ground in my garden today and mostly what I see are gaps! Where did the bulbs go, and why do the ones that have come up look so sickly? My scilla are starting to spread nicely, though, so I can be happy about that.
You have a nice selection here. Do most of them come back every year for you? I had a batch of tulips that came back for 20 years, even increased. I didn’t know that wasn’t common, so I shouldn’t complain I suppose…
Species tulips are much more perennial, and some specific varieties. There’s a whole section on the most perennial tulips in Color Your Garden by Jacqueline van der Kloet.
Oh, that is good to know! Thank you.
I love all the little blue flowered spring bulbs, but I can never remember which is which except muscari which are so distinctive.
One way to remember: Glory-of-the-Snow faces upward, Squill faces down.
Ooh, those tulips do look delicious! It’s lovely to see flowers and the fresh green colours of spring. Where I live, the soil is still frozen but in the southern part of the country (Finland) the first bulbs are blooming.
Thank you for your comment! Your idea concerning music is splendid. There couldn’t be a better moment for an activity like that.
You must be very far north, indeed. I thought it was cold where we live.
It is exciting to see the fresh foliage popping up and the few blooms you have are making you anxious to see more no doubt. I am always wondering where the bulbs go. Between the rabbits, squirrels and voles there is always damage. I have a few tulips blooming. Hyacinths are blooming too but there are some missing. I have decided that I don’t plant in great enough amounts. I will try to remedy that this coming fall.
Impossible to have too many bulbs.
Our minds have been running on the same track. Yes, apparently chionodoxas are now scillas. And I spent years learning the difference. Still they are all lovely, such a fabulous blue.
A Chionodoxa, by any other name, is just as blue.
Any color at all is welcome right now, but those tulips are an especially happy sight!
I love their color. They also have nicely mottled foliage. For some reason this variety has gotten harder to find.
Ooooo, those orange tulips are delightful! As are the scilla and chionodoxa (I’ve been spreading their seeds all over my little quarter acre for a couple years now and am enjoying the results). As you do, I let my purple sensations seed at will. It’s interesting to see how far the seeds travel! I’m at the early tulips bloom stage at my place. My new species tulips this year is cretica hilde, a tiny, multi blossomed, white/pink darling that’s in my new rock garden. Garden joys are so essential right now, huh?
For sure. Cretica hilde, you say?
How did I not know that tulips close at night? I guess when tulips were part of my life, I mostly didn’t pay attention to them, except to admire their color. I still laugh at how puzzled I was that whole fields of our native ‘dandelions’ would disappear in the afternoons. It took me forever to figure out that they’re in full bloom by 7 a.m, but close up by noon.
That happens with a lot of flowers, especially those that bloom in cooler weather.
Here comes spring!!!
Year after year-I never can get enough of the glory of spring! Thank you for sharing.
All beautiful, but the Tulipa kaufmanniana ‘Early Harvest’ is quite a head-turner!
It is. Most years it suffers more from rabbit attack, but that may still be coming.
I don’t plant bulbs anymore. Now that I write and sell books, fall is a very busy time for me. But lots of green shoots coming up in the garden. Yay, spring!
Long may it reign!
The new growth and flowering in spring are most welcome after winter’s cold! Your gardens look beautiful!
I love orange tulips. Try to plant some every season.
Same here. In addition to ‘Early Harvest’, I love ‘Ballerina’ and ‘Princess Irene’.
My ugly bulbs are coming out of it. Yeah, they’re going from albino white to green so now I’ll hope for some blooms. 🙂
I’ll keep my fingers crossed for you.
No tulips yet but just about all the other early spring bulbs have been blooming here.
Sounds like spring has arrived for sure out there.
Yes, but it’s happening slowly.
It has been the best spring ever here I think except for the poor wisteria which was completely desiccated by the freezing north wind just as it was starting to bloom, worryingly there’s no leaf shoots appearing either.
Best spring ever! Sounds delightful!
How far along are mine?! Is that a trick question? Well, we do not have many spring bulbs, and, except for a few strays, none of them (here) are tulip or squill (or Chionodoxa forbesii), and only a few more are Allium. What does bloom here is significantly delayed though, as they will not bloom again for another ten months or so.
I keep forgetting about folks in California, you’re on a different calendar.
Actually, everyone else is on a different calendar.
Oh, I see!
I love ‘Early Harvest’ but mine haven‘t shown this year. I suspect the mice! I am always amazed at how quickly your garden catches up. We have narcissi out now and some promising tulip foliage. The ones in pots are about to open with all the warm sunshine we are having. 😃
The real show for the tulips and narcissi has yet to begin around here, but as you say there is promising foliage.
Hello Jason, we’ve had our crocus and snowdrops already now and like yours, my crocuses also seems to be dwindling and I’m not sure why, I think it’s too dry where they’re planted. I’m looking forward to a show of the tiny daffodils (hoop-petticoat narcissi) that I planted but while there is some flower, a lot have come up blind, they’ve definitely divided, but aren’t flowering – perhaps I need to be more patient and given them a chance.
I don’t have experience with the petticoat narcissi – are those the N. bulbicodium?
Nice to see your tulips and the Scilla is a great blue. I didn’t get tulips planted in fall but two stalwarts from last year have been blooming for days. Daffodils have been excellent this year.
That’s good to hear. Still waiting to see with most of ours, but I have high hopes.
I have Scilla blooming, also Virginia bluebells. My grape hyacinths are blooming in the “lawn” for some reason. As noted above, daffodils have been wonderful this spring.
I haven’t heard of grape hyacinths blooming in the lawn. For some reason they don’t do very well for me.
That tulip is a lovely shade of orange. I’m glad it’s not just me with the disappearing bulbs, I’m sure the squirrels dig them up here as they often grow where they weren’t planted.xxx
Yes, I see that here as well. But sometimes they just disappear.