The Pleasure of Spring: 11-09-2021

What an exciting time it is in the garden just now. There has been another 25 mm of rain since I last posted and with warmer, sunnier days the growth happening in the garden beds is nothing short of miraculous. A week ago ornamental grasses were shorn like a ‘short back and sides’ and already they have doubled in size. Every day there must be an early morning foray into the garden to forensically examine each plant and even bare patches to see where new growth has appeared, and to wonder what tiny leaves might turn into as they grow larger. Often they’re weeds, but sometimes a promising-looking shoot leaves me wondering how it arrived there in the first place.

My carefully planted and nurtured seeds, however, remain obstinately invisible despite my looking at them several times a day. If just one germinated, that would be a start…..

One: Loropetalum ‘Plum Gorgeous’, above, is living up to its name just now with a cosmic burst of vivid flowers. I think it has revelled in the rainy weather and is putting on an extra special show this spring.

Two: Primula vulgaris, given to me by a friend, has also enjoyed the damp weather. A common plant in the Northern hemisphere, it was, along with English bluebells, a favourite of my English mother. I have it growing in a spot where, hopefully, it will be safe during the hot weather to come. I’ll be happy if it multiplies. Here, it is accompanied by Heuchera ‘Caramel’. The heuchera is still waiting to be a caramel colour: I think it’s recovering from frosts.

Three: A trio of species tulips. As with my narcissi shown in my last post, I was worried that these bulbs would rot in the wet weather, but they seem to be quite happy, although they didn’t multiply as much as I hoped.

Four: I featured Narcissus ‘Hoop Petticoat’ last time when there was only one, and I can’t resist another photo when there are more, making a happy little group in the early morning sun.

Five: Dutch Iris ‘Angel Wings’ with a backdrop of Coleonema (more commonly known as pink Diosma)

Six: Narcissus ‘Thalia’, so pure and white. A dainty daffodil appearing in the garden for the first time.

With Covid spreading its evil tentacles around, we are still in lockdown in New South Wales. According to our Premier, we haven’t reached the peak yet, and worse is to come. The hospital system is being stretched, as has been the case in countries all over the world, and I fear for the health and well-being of our frontline workers for whom this time has been especially hard and exhausting.

Our garden has been a solace for us: a place to work, relax and enjoy. We are so very lucky to have it.

I’m joining in with the Propagator, and as ever, if you’d like to see what other gardeners have growing in their gardens, pop over to his blog and check them out.

Weather today: Sunny. 1 – 25 C.

55 Comments Add yours

  1. Gosh! Your Loropetalem is a sight to behold! It is definitely ‘gorgeous’! I have a few but they are nowhere near as full of flowers as your shrub is! The Coleonema is looking amazing too. Does it only flower in spring? You do have a lovely selection of daffs too!
    The situation in NSW is worrying (my son is in Wollongong), and having a garden during the lockdowns is such a blessing. We would not have coped so well without our garden. Stay safe!

  2. Jane says:

    Thanks Megan. Yes, the Coleomema only flowers once, but it’s always early and a sign that spring is here. The daffs keep on coming, bless them.
    Did you find out what your mystery white bulb is?

    1. No luck as yet on what the bulb is. I really must remember to take some with me for identification next time I go to our local nursery.

  3. Rosie Amber says:

    Lovely to see your Spring flowers.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you!

  4. I’m impressed with your Loropetalem. Mine have run their course after 20 years. COVID is terrible everywhere. Our hospitals are also full.

    1. Jane says:

      Twenty years is a good life span for a shrub, I think. I’ll be happy if mine last that long. I think you are in a part of the US that is especially hard hit with covid. Stay safe.

      1. Yes, we have it bad here, but my family is vaccinated and being careful. It is good to have a garden to stay busy in. We will start our Fall plantings soon. Take care!

  5. A lovely selection. It’s nice to see spring has sprung. I think Dutch Iris are one of my favourites. Fingers are crossed your seeds germinate soon.

    1. Jane says:

      Yes, the Dutch iris are easy care rewarding plants for me. I have the more common (I think) blue one which is forming excellent clumps and flowering well just now.

  6. Gerrie Mackey says:

    Yes, I agree it is great to go out into the garden in the morning and see all the new spring plants coming up. I love Plum Gorgeous too, so pretty and it is very hardy in our windy hot front garden. All your bulbs are looking lovely, and I like the Narcissus ‘Hoop Petticoat’ and well named!

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you, Gerrie. I’m pleased to hear loropetalum survive hot windy weather as mine is in quite an exposed spot.
      Bulbs are great doers aren’t they. Seemingly drought hardy ( not that that mattered this year) and popping up so reliably each year.

  7. Lovely to see your fresh garden as mine suffers the tatters of an Alabama summer and changing weather patterns. The Dutch Iris are particularly attractive.

    1. Jane says:

      I didn’t realise you are in Alabama. I expect your summer was particularly hard on gardens this year with the storms you’ve had. Dutch iris are very hardy despite their quite delicate flowers. I’ve some nice blue ones as well.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Liking all your spring bulbs. Beautiful and captivating flowers. Always lovely to see their appearance after the dark winter scenes. Yes, we are lucky to have our of comfort especially with this pandemic still raging on.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you.

  9. Gardens have been so important during the pandemic for keeping us sane and hopeful! Your garden looks lovely. Primeroses do well in my garden in France but bluebells brought from England just won’t thrive for me as they need cool and damp conditions. How funny that we are both trying to recreate something our mothers loved !

    1. Jane says:

      Yes, many of my plants are from the northern hemisphere. I should be planting natives, and I do have some, but the NH plants always seem to catch my eye more.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Love your Loropetalum!! a plant I miss from my former garden. And Thalia, spring is wonderful to see, regardless of where you are. We are approaching fall. Covid is the same here, I am glad you are home safe and enjoying the garden.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I’m really enjoying spring this year. Lovely to see your daffodils.

    1. Jane says:

      I guess being in lockdown gives us so much more time to ‘smell the roses’.

  12. Kris P says:

    Wow! Spring arrives like a lion in your part of the world. There’s nothing that says SPRING better than bulb blooms. I love the Loropetalum, which I’ve had no success growing. I’m longing for fall and the cooler temperatures (and, hopefully, rain) that comes with it but we’re still firmly stuck in summer mode. I’m sorry you’re in lockdown. Lockdowns appear to be in the past here but many areas are in serious trouble nonetheless, with hospitals similarly stressed, and most people I know continue to severely curtail their activities as the Delta variant runs wild.

    1. Jane says:

      Hi Kris, yes, spring seems to have arrived earlier and faster. Last night for the first time we managed without any heating in the house, and it’s very early in the year for that. I do hope you receive that longed for rain to make your autumn a special one.

  13. I’m really enjoying spring this year – maybe something to do with lockdown (though ours was only 4 weeks this time around). Lovely daffs!

  14. Jane says:

    Me too. Well, there’s plenty of time to spend looking! In the Central West, we’ve done about 5 weeks ( I think I’m losing count), but of course, on the coast it’s been a great deal longer.

  15. Margaret Campbell says:

    Looking spectacular Jane❤️

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you, Marg. Yours will soon too, I’m sure.

  16. Such a wonderful time when each day brings another gardening surprise.
    I can’t wait to get up and see the latest spurts of growth in not only my garden but all around the neighborhood.

    1. Jane says:

      It makes going for a walk even more of a pleasure, doesn’t it. Enjoy your walk with your companion.🐶

    2. Jane says:

      Yes, I agree. All the more reason to take a daily walk.

  17. pommepal says:

    After a very dry August that rain was like mana from heaven and your garden has responded with a glorious show of colour. Lovely photos Jane.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you PP. It’s a long awaited and wonderful time of year.

  18. Noelle M says:

    I can see why you chose Loropetalum as your banner picture this week. What a picture it makes it your garden Jane. Lovely to see such fine spring beauties in your garden.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you, Noelle. I’m really delighted by the loropetalum this year, and spring ploughs on with more to see daily. So rewarding!

  19. Lovely spring plants but that first picture is stunning.

    1. Jane says:

      Thanks Granny.

  20. Lovely spring plants and that first picture is stunning.

  21. Sorry, I thought the first one hadn’t gone through. 🙄

  22. fredgardener says:

    This loropetalum is superbly flowered! I can’t wait to see mine in bloom but it will never be so beautiful for now (because it’s too young)

    1. Jane says:

      I think ours is about five years old Fred. It struggles a bit in really hot dry summer weather, but otherwise seems quite happy.

  23. Oh my that loropetalum, I have never seen one so magnficent. Thalia is one of my favourites, a lovely scent too. Stay safe and well.

    1. Jane says:

      The loropetalum is especially fine this year – the best I’ve ever seen it, and better still it has been flowering for nearly three weeks, far longer than the blossoming trees. Such good value! I planted the Thalia because I saw it on NH spring SoS blogs. I hadn’t heard of it before that. I’m very pleased with it.

  24. The Pleasure of Spring is a very apt title for your post. The flowering bulbs you’ve chosen look great. The wild primrose is one of my favourite plants so I hope it settles in and grows well for you.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you. The primrose is looking very happy, so I have hopes to see more in that slightly shady are.

  25. Heyjude says:

    I had to smile when reading the comments about you loving the NH plants, whereas I crave the SH flora! We should simply swap houses! Thalia is such a lovely clean looking narcissus, I really like that one and it looks beautiful with the yellow and white of the Dutch iris. Narcissus ‘Hoop Petticoat’ is an odd one though! I have ordered some mixed Dutch irises this year, can’t decide whether to put them in the ground or in a container. I have the pleasure of seeing your spring whilst planting the bulbs for my next one.

    1. Jane says:

      Dutch iris seem to naturalise very easily and I now have a couple of good-sized clumps of the more ordinary blue one. (I was looking at them online and they do come in gorgeous colours). It might be worth trying them in your garden if you’re trying to downsize on pots!
      I do love the SH plants too, it’s just that I seem to have created a different type of garden. I’m blaming the SoS crowd for introducing me to such desirable beauties 😉

      1. Heyjude says:

        The SoS crowd have a lot to be blamed for! I have a list of plants, but absolutely no more space!

  26. shoreacres says:

    I smiled at the thought of you wandering out several times a day to check the status of your plantings. It occurred to me there’s a botanical analogue to the old saying about watched pots not boiling. Perhaps a watched seed becomes reluctant to germinate!

    1. Jane says:

      That’s funny, I’ll remember that, and only look once a day in future!

      1. shoreacres says:

        Well — maybe to be safe twice a day would be better. You never know about those plants!

  27. Anonymous says:

    What a lovely Six. The Lorapetalum looks stunning

  28. Beautiful, as always! How nice to have received lovely rain. It’s always welcome. Stay safe down there!

  29. Spring is such an optimistic time of year and that really comes across in how you write about it, all that new growth that is quite miraculous! Sadly we are at the opposite end of the year, though it has its golden moments too. We share Heuchera Caramel which is I think my favourite Heuchera, such a lovely colour that contrasts so nicely with whatever is around it. Thalia looks so fresh perhaps I will have to add it to my spring bulbs list!

    1. Jane says:

      Yes, autumn is lovely too, if only we didn’t have to have winter after it! We just have to think of all those bulbs doing their thing under the ground and getting ready to delight us. I’m starting a collection of heucheras as I think the colours are gorgeous, especially ephemeral planted in a group……just have to find a less sunny spot to plant them in my not very sheltered garden.

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