Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Posted By: in Gardening

There is a light at the end of the drizzle, really. It’s time to get out of the house and stare blearily up at the light in the sky, between showers that is. I have officially removed the fleece layer from my Gore-Tex jacket. Here are some of the plant signs that Mother Nature has not forsaken us:

snow drop bloom

Bulbs

Snow drops and Crocus and Anemone oh my!!!! I have seen these with my own eyes! I have drifts of them by at the end of my driveway and you can hear the sighs of relief when people walk by. It’s as if we were all holding our breath for this moment.

Perennials

The Iberis or Candytuft is starting to come in to bloom and I’ve seen the first buds of the rock cress. The bleeding hearts are starting to stretch out of the ground and if you look under the leaf mulch you can see the Corydalis and the Epimedium starting to make some moves.

Edibles

My blueberries are beginning to show some signs of life, not that I didn’t appreciate their red twigs during the winter but it’s nice to see a couple of tiny leaves. The garlic is up and the chives are showing some signs of resurrection. It's also a great time to get cold weather crops like lettuce started from seed. I am also happy to announce I saw my first dandelion!! It is one of the favorite foods of the newly emerging mason bees.

forsythia, rhododendron snow lady, camellia

Shrubs

The Camellias are looking particularly sweet with their soft pink or white flowers with sunshine yellow stamens. Snow Lady Rhododendron will come into bloom any day now! The snow lady rhododendrons look like mini snowdrifts and when they are in full bloom you can’t even see the leaves! The Forsythia are starting to break bud! I do love these shrubs and yes they are worth it for all of their vigorous growth. These never subtle plants are the starter’s pistol in the garden relay!

Vines

Yes! There’s life! I can see the bloom buds forming on the Clematis Montana and Clematis Alpina. Lovely early varieties that are so delicate looking but so hardy!!

Trees

Magnolia – The buds are swelling and some of the larger flowering magnolias look like they are covered in furry grey kitty paws. I do love pruning these, using proper cuts of course, the cut branches smell like tangerine.

Cercis Canadensis – Redbud. Yes, they are starting to come into bloom. These wonderful smaller trees with a lovely full canopy bloom along the branches before the leaves come on. The pea shaped blossoms range from white to pink to purplish pink followed by delicate looking heart shaped leaves in green or burgundy.

Cornus mas – Cornelian Cherry – is in its full glory right now with its multitudes of chartreuse flowers. If you watch closely on a still day you may get to see some of our early native pollinators at work. The flowers are followed by bright red edible fruit. It is an underused and lovely small tree for the garden.

magnolia, cornus mas, cercis canadensis

These and many other great plants are available now at Arts Nursery. Please call 604.882.1201 in advance to confirm availability

Laurelle Olfdord-Down

Laurelle Olfdord-Down

Laurelle is a certified horticulturalist and Landscape designer. She is currently an up and coming apple guru, growing over 120 cultivars which explains her passion for edible garden design. Laurelle works part time for Art’s Nursery. You can also interact with her through Art’s monthly newsletter, our blog and our gardening channel on YouTube.


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8940 192nd Street,
Surrey, BC, Canada,
V4N 3W8

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