Sunday, March 6, 2011

Mears Garden Picture Contest-Week 14- March 6, 2011- Real time snowdrops

Welcome to week 14. Here are the real time snowdrops.

Actually, even with temperatures not getting much above freezing recently, we have many things emerging (not counting the moles and I will try to avoid that subject). The hellebores are coming alive, as are the crocuses. And there is yard work. I seems that I do a lot of raking in the fall. Nevertheless there is always an amazing amount of stuff- leaves and sticks and old foliage, left for spring yard work. So I was back at it yesterday, remembering several important lessons from the past.
First, don’t do too much at one time. Those shoulder muscles have to get used to being used. (Those words really are spelled the same but sound different. That is interesting for being so close together.) I set some defined task rather than trying to rake the entire front yard. I will clean up this one defined garden area. (I actually do have about 20 of these in the yard. There the back yard raised bed. There is the oblong bed. There is the lupine bed. You get the picture.) Sometimes I will set as a goal to fill up one garbage can with debris. Then I can do something else.
This last point is related to the second point. Give yourself a manageable defined task. Not only do you save your body from overwork, you also feel the sense of accomplishment of having finished something.

I also wish to report that there are booming daffodils in Missouri. My mother reports they blooming in Springfield, along with the tiny iris.

In last week’s contest the winner was the Blue Siberian Iris, by the slimmest of margins. But a win counts as a win. In the end a big win is about the same as a little win.
Here is the full voting:
Siberian Iris 24 for 33.3%
Snowdrops 23 for 31.9%
Daylily 19 for 26.4%
Daffodils 6 for 8.3%
Total voting 72

This week’s contest, to pick the second flower in the final four, again features some early flowers.

First is this great trillium, which appeared on April 25. Once spring starts it often goes really fast. It was the winner in Week 5.

The second picture is this group of winter aconite. This particular picture, the wild card entry from week 2, was taken on March 10, just about a year ago. We are maybe 7-10 days behind last year. I did however see some aconite foliage in one little microclimate. I am aware of microclimates particularly at this time of year. There are parts of the garden that the sun just doesn’t reach. The ground stays frozen there much longer. I really should push this theory by trying some zone 6 plants right up against the house, on the south side. Because of microclimates we do have aconite coming up in different parts of the yard for several weeks.
What I like about this picture is that you can see the generations of aconite, as they self-seed.

The third picture is the pairs winner from Week 7, the orchid cactus. They bloomed on May 24 last year. They hang from the trees. They do have to wait for the leaves to come out in the different trees. If you put them into the sun without shade they will sunburn. That is true for most any plant that has spent the winter inside. I brought some hellebore seedlings inside in November and grew them under lights for the winter. I am trying to confuse their genes. Some of them got to go outside for the first time yesterday, when it was cloudy. I put them outside again this mourning. Because it is sunny I should really go out and get them out of the sun.

Finally there is this pink frilly tall beard iris, from May 5 and Week 3. That week began on December 19. Hello everyone, winter is almost in the past tense.

Vote away.


For your bonus pleasure today there are real time pictures from the garden today.

Here is another snowdrop picture. If you will notice there are lots of little sprouts in with the snowdrops. These are the baby squill.

Those are the thousands of squill babies. Remember all those thousands of blue flowers from last spring. Each flower becomes a seed, remains on the surface, and then sprouts the next spring.
This picture is a big clump of sprouting squill. It looks almost like an abstract painting.

Here is the first aconite emerging.

This is a hellebore peaking out.

Enjoy the warmer weather.

1 comment:

Catherine Woods said...

I love the orchid cactus and it's wonderful bright colors, but trillium holds a sacred space in my heart so I had to vote for it.