WHAT’S POPPING UP in your garden these last (we hope) days of winter? Minor bulbs…like the intrepid snowdrop pictured above? I’ll confess this Gallanthus made my heart skip a beat when I found it blooming at the base of the Serpentine Garden this morning. In fact, its nodding white bells prompted a “treasure hunt” for other signs of life amidst the mostly-departed snow. Here’s what I found:
In the bed beside the front porch, winter aconites are defying the frigid temperatures. Do you have this yellow-cupped, green-ruffed Eranthis hyemalis in your own garden? For a minor bulb, it offers major color.
Hardly breath-taking, but a comfort nonetheless, is the collection of winter-sown seeds. I’ve been checking them daily this month, and just today discovered a few lettuce seeds have sprouted. These were planted in early January, and watered by snow and ice. If you haven’t tried your hand at winter-sowing yet, by all means give it a try.
The rest of my winter-sown seeds are biding their time in miniature greenhouses made from recycled milk- and water-jugs. Based on past history, these seeds will explode in April.
Well, they won’t actually explode.
They will germinate.
On the southern hill in the Serpentine Garden, my Chinese Witch Hazel, above, has opened its fragrant, red, spidery blooms. I can’t tell you what a pleasure it is to climb the steps of this garden while inhaling the intoxicating perfume. If you don’t have this Hamamelis in your garden, by all means obtain it. A more dependable winter-blooming shrub doesn’t exist.
In the Kitchen Garden, the autumn-planted garlic has resumed growth. Did you plant garlic last fall? It’s very easy to grow.
Meanwhile, in the Woodland Garden, the fish are swimming once again, after their semi-comatose winter-period. Unfortunately they fled to the depths of the pond the moment they saw my camera. Obviously they hate the paparazzi as much as Kristin Stewart does.
Rhododendrons in the Woodland Garden are sporting their gorgeous flower buds. They will bloom in mid-April.
And that’s about it for my garden thus far. What’s emerging in your neck of the woods? Or are you still buried under a blanket of snow?
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