Sunday, February 6, 2011

Picture Contest- Week 10- February 5, 2011- Hello February-Hello Snow

Welcome to week 10.
On Wednesday of this last week Iowa City had almost 20 inches of snow. The official total was less than that. Nevertheless the weather channel listed us as getting 19.7 inches in 24 hours. I also can see how much snow there is- in those cleanly cut places where the neighbors’ snow blowers did their work on our sidewalk. This was more snow at one time than I can remember. I feel that I can mention this snow to my friends in Washington DC or Connecticut or New York City, who have had that much or more in the last few years.
But with all that snow I think my green thumb, or that part of my brain that thinks about the garden, has turned a corner. Maybe it was the sunshine yesterday that has been a rare occasion this winter. It certainly helps that when there is sunshine, there is more of it these days.
I find myself wanting to repot plants, and get rid of those pesky aphids, that all seemed to come inside this last fall when the plants came inside.
For the moment, the garden, which really does include a part of my brain, has put a little spring in my step. I hope that will take me through this short month. I can just feel those crocuses under the snow- waiting.

On to the contest.
Last week the winner, somewhat to my surprise, was the daylily San Ignacio. In the bonus pictures this week I have included several other photographs of this great plant.

The totals were
Daylily 30 for 36.6%
Lily 20 for 24.4%
Crocus 18 for 22.0%
Epimedium, and bluebells 14 for 17.1%
Total voting 82

For this week’s contest I feature rookies- plants new to the garden or certainly new to the contest. As much as old reliable plants are important, it is also important to try new things. Some work and some don’t. There are important lessons in both experiences. Did I mention trying things that have not worked before? I think there is a parable about that. I think you give plants 3 years and that’s it.

The first picture this week is the double bloodroot, taken on April 10. I think you remember bloodroot. It was featured in week 2 this contest. Well there is a seldom seen double variety. I think I have it established in the garden.

Next up is fritillaria persica. It also bloomed on April 10. This fritillaria is not as Dr. Seuss like as the crown imperials. It is impressive nonetheless. And it is about as black as a flower can get. I find black flowers really interesting. There are not many of them. In the bonus pictures there is this persica before it opens.

This is cypripedium orchid called ‘Gisela’. It bloomed on May 1, May Day. Cypripediums are good, even though they can be a challenge. (What is the plural of cypripediums? Cypripedii?- Oh how that part of my brain from 9th grade Latin has faded.)This plant was listed as being about the easiest of the cypripediums to grow. Well it did not disappoint this past year. I gather that they like is a somewhat moist area. For that reason I expect they will really flourish this spring, after last summer’s wet time.

Finally here is another fall blooming crocus, probably speciosus albus. You saw another fall crocus last week. This one bloomed on September 14. They do come when other plants are fading.

There you have the best pictures of this year’s rookies.

In the bonus section there are other rookies.
There was this yellow iris, of a group called spuria iris. This one finally bloomed after more like 5 years.
Here is a all white toad lily, called white towers.
This is Anemonella cameo, a little tiny flower that almost made the contest.
Finally here is a hosta leaf from Hosta Gunther’s Prize. We saw this leaf at a hosta leaf contest, at the Chicago Botanical garden in early June. I then found the plant. It will get big and has these amazing splashes in the leaves.

Here are more of the contestants this week.

Finally as advertised here are two pictures from previous years of San Ignacio.

Enjoy the week. On to March.

1 comment:

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