Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day: Opening Presents

Raking the leaves off my garden beds feels a little like unwrapping gifts.  Dead leaves are the easiest, cheapest mulch available.  The leaves-as-mulch plan also provides a convenient excuse to be lazy about removing them -- with 40+ trees in the wooded area of our backyard, it’s a huge job.   Many will break down over the winter, but many will not, and their removal has only been postponed.  The leaves are now heavier, soaked with melted snow and rain, matted and muddy.  Underneath there are allium, crocus, hyssop and lavendar waiting to see the light of Spring.   Here are a few things happily released:

Anise Hyssop (Agastache foeniculum)
This plant re-seeds continously all summer, almost to the point of being invasive.  I love the look of the purple sprouts.  My kids call this the "root beer plant."  A good cocktail herb.

Strawberry (Fragaria Ananassa)
I planted some strawberries last year that seem to be coming back.  I don't remember what varieties (isn't that awful that I don't make a note of these things?) but I remember that I planted one June and one everbearing variety.  I will probably add a few more plants to this bed this year.

These are probably Allium hollandicum and will green up soon.

Tulips (tulipa)- I planted a black variety last fall - excited to see if they turn up.

Abbotsford Ivy (Hedera helix)-  above, an heirloom plant clipped from the Memorial Garden at Grace Church.  The winter seems to have heightened the contrasts. 

I was happy and surprised to see how well-preserved this liriope was, especially since I totally neglected it last summer.

Crocus - usually the first to bloom in my garden.  I try to add a few every year.

Lavendar (lavendula)- This plant hasn't quite taken off, but it hasn't died either.

I believe this is Sorrel  (Rumex acetosa), purchased from Hook Mountain Growers last year.  I remember Pam telling me that it would be among the first shoots out of the ground, and she was right!

This was Stella's last egg.  (Stella was my Speckled Sussex that got nabbed by a predator in January.)

Since I never found her body, I buried it in Yolanda's memorial garden, under this character. 

Hey!  It looks like I made the deadline for Garden Blogger's Bloom Day!  Think I'll head over to May Dreams Gardens and add my link.  Today, you'll find links there to gardens all over the world - check it out! and thanks, Carol, as always, for hosting!


Elephant's Eye said...

BTW - Now is the time to seize the opportunity - campaign to shut down your nuclear plant. Germany has closed some older reactors, in the wake of Japan.

Enjoyed the signs of hope in your garden.

Carol said...

It is so exciting to see this new life!! I cannot wait. Happy nearly Spring to you.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Can't wait to see them blooming. As everything will be sleeping here soon.

Hook Mountain Growers said...

beautiful photo journal of spring and hope. tomorrow will be the first taste of spring. 60 degree weather is my kind of anti-depressant!

tina said...

Well happy GBBD to you! So glad spring is coming to your neck of the woods.

Stacey said...

I'm giving up on lavender. I've replaced it so many times - all of my old plants died this year. In fact, I replaced one plant last year with Anise hyssop! I don't care if it reseeds, it will just join the butterfly weed that has taken over.

TALON said...

Still haven't been able to clean the beds here - ice is still in places, but I can't wait! There are crocus and hyacynth poking out their noses - can't wait to see them again either!

Happy lst day of Spring, JGH!