Friday, January 29, 2010

Floral Report

We have had freezing temperatures, ice, snow, wind, and rain, rain, rain. Even though we are in an El Nino pattern, we have been getting plenty of rain. I mention it only because when you have a “water intrusion” as the building trades like to call it (aka a leak), you do notice the unremitting rain.

However, all is not dreary and gray! No indeed, with the above average temperatures that El Nino brings, we are starting to see early spring flowers popping up. I should be worried about them; they should be worried about themselves. It’s really too early to be bursting into bloom. February is known around here as the ice storm month for good reason. But, I am so happy to see them!

In my yard, the winter blooming jasmine is sporting sunny yellow flowers. OK, it’s a winter bloomer, not a sign of early spring, but I love it anyway. Cheers for the jasmine! Thanks for the joy!

My neighbor’s yard is rife with daphne, and they are just starting to send out their heady fragrance. Do you like the smell of daphne? It reminds me of Froot Loops cereal, so sweet!

There are bulb-borne flowers starting to push out of the ground, strong, sturdy, sword-like leaves are cleaving their way through the soil. Tulips, hyacinths, daffodils.

Even the hydrangea is showing new leaf buds on its winter scarred branches. I wasn’t sure we’d get any hydrangeas after that cold snap and snow storm. It is such a fibrous plant that it dies right back in the cold. Ours seems to have survived.

Some planting guides suggest that we can put peas in the ground now (snow peas, I’d guess), but I’m going to wait just a little longer for that. That would be tempting fate, tempting the weather gods just a little too much.

What are your favorite spring flowers? What’s blooming in your yard or neighborhood?


  1. Boy I'm jealous. All we can see on the ground is snow. So much snow. I feel like it's never going to melt and that all I'll see all summer is white (and brown) snow everywhere. BUT, I know that the temp will rise eventually. I wish that was now.
    I would think that it would be way too early for anything to be planted. I'm going to start my seeds in late Feb. I cant wait to have fresh vegetables! Yum!

  2. all i have been thinking about is that my gas bill won't be so big this month 'cuz we haven't had the heat on! i never notice the vegetation much. i am a city man, like a nyc man at heart, but i have seen some green shoots a sproutin'. must make all of you flower huggers happy, huh?

  3. Nothing like flowers in January and February to keep a person sane, outside, and unafraid of the cold wet winter. I love, love, love the long slow luxurious springs that unfold around us here in the Pacific Northwest. It such a dependable stalwart progression of waking vegetation. Like you, I always worry that the early buds will be hammered to mush with a February freeze .... but maybe not ... and that's what makes the early blooms so great. Yea, all the usual suspects are going in the yard, the camellias, the hellebores, the daphne .... but it is down right weird to see hydrangeas and honeysuckle waking up now. We'll see ...? I am mad at myself for ripping out the winter blooming clematis last year. It would be going full board. Maybe I should have just let it smother that Japanese maple as nature intended. I mean Japanese maples are a dime a dozen. But I noticed there are a few clematis shoots pushing up now where I dug it out. Maybe next January I'll have clematis blooms again. That's what's so great about the winter blooming stuff here. It's such a crap shoot. Just like life.