hellebore flower

Still Waiting for Spring

It’s still not quite spring here. Actually, it’s quite confusing. We had a few days when it did get warm and sunny and working in the garden was a pleasure. But then the cold came back, along with heavy grey clouds.

Luckily, I hadn’t started removing the dead leaves and remains of the old growth from the perennials etc. There are still lots of ladybirds and other little critters tucked up for the winter in amongst it all. I don’t want to eject anything from its comfy little bed yet – they’ll want to snooze a bit longer until it gets warmer. Tidying up in the garden can wait a while.

I did make a start on removing some of the Japanese anemones that are doing their best to take over large areas of the garden. It was necessary to get a move on with this because a friend had given me two big plants of Salvia ‘Amistad’ and I needed to find space for them. (It’s a very sunny spot, with a bit of shelter, so they should be happy there.) However, it took me so long to get rid of all the anemone roots that I decided to plant the second sage into a big pot. Otherwise I would probably have run out of time to get the second patch of ground cleared.

Although the big swathes of anemones are a problem, I may well plant other flowers in big drifts. This is because it’s supposed to make it easier for the bees to find them. So no more dotting a plant here and another there! (I do try to plant in groups if I can. It does look much better. But that can get expensive if you’re buying them at a garden centre.)

I’m glad to see that the bumblebees have been making use of the flowers that are out now – mostly crocuses and the remaining winter jasmine flowers. They are probably visiting our hellebores too, but the downturned flowers make it hard to spot any visiting bees. I reckon that growing plants for bees makes an excellent excuse for buying more hellebores! (Well, any good bee plants really!)

The hellebore here is a plant that I photographed in the garden last year. Bringing a few of the flowers inside made it much easier to photograph than trying to get low enough down to see the flowers outside. This is just its second year of flowering, so I’m hoping for lots more flowers as it gets bigger. (I don’t like to take many flowers from a plant that’s still small because I really prefer to see them still out in the garden. But you don’t miss the odd flower if there’s plenty of them.)

If you’re waiting for spring too, I hope there’s lots of exciting new growth popping up around you. And I wish you flowers – lots of flowers!

22 thoughts on “Still Waiting for Spring

  1. Spring seems to be quite late here too, we too have had a week of grey, freezing days. I started the big tidy up during that spell of warmer weather, it was a pleasure to be out there. I’m braving the cold to continue with the tidy and having a good sort of one or two neglected areas too. Then the garden can rampage away as usual! I envy your anemone problem, they hate our garden, I have a precious one in a pot! Beautiful images as usual Ann, they are a joy, as are hellebores, which fortunately do agree to grow in our garden.

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    1. Anemones can be sneaky…I had one that appeared very well-behaved in Scotland and brought a piece of it with me. When I planted it here it rampaged away and took over a big area…so it just depends on growing conditions. The hellebores are much more civilized, hehe!

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  2. The hellebore is stunning, Ann. A queen among flowers, I would say.
    I planted crocus bulbs in the autumn and am very curious to see if they will bloom this spring. We live at 2,000 meters, so thing will take a while longer to grow, but the first green shoots are pushing through the ground.
    Happy spring to us.

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    1. I love the hellebores, especially when it comes to photography. My neighbour very kindly brought me some hellebore heads to float in a bowl of water – so I’ll be photographing them this afternoon. 🙂 I hope your crocuses do flower – they’re lovely little things. Happy spring!

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      1. I look forward to the floating-in-water hellebore photos, Ann. 🙂
        And as spring approaches, so does a weather front with the potential to bring 2 feet of snow to parts of the Rocky Mountains! We will know more in about 2 days!

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      2. The hellebores were fun to photograph but I found that I had better results by simply placing them on my light-table. (More on that soon, crocuses first! 🙂 ) Hope you don’t get all that snow, argh!

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  3. It’s so nice to begin thinking of the garden. Ours is, I am sure, not nearly as well designed and developed as yours, but we are looking forward to getting some dirt under our fingernails. Those are lovely pictures to add some encouragement to the anticipation.

    On a side note. Maybe I am the only one, but it is very difficult for me to see what I have written with light grey letters on a black background.

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    1. Spring and getting back outside makes me happy. I not so sure about the ‘design’ here, but the garden is gradually evolving into something that suits us better. 🙂 It has taken a long time for me to get down to making big changes and there will be many more.
      And yes – I prefer black type too!

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    1. Thank you Scott! I do have flowers for much of the year, but with a few times when there isn’t much yet. (I’m working on that!) Eventually I’d like to have flowers for as much of the year as possible, especially when it helps bees and other pollinators.

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    1. It’s been really mixed, but today the sun is shining and I’m just about to get out there, yay! 🙂 I think we’ll all be so happy to get outside after being cooped up for so long, even if it’s just as far as our own gardens.

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  4. We’re a little slow in this area, thanks to our freeze. But I suspect that once things start developing, it’s going to happen quickly. I was thrilled to see some new leaves on a few hedges this week, and the buttercups are out. I found exactly one bee last weekend, although it was crawling through grasses and seemed to be on its last legs. I’ve learned that our native bees often are solitary, and I often find dead ones on the boats I work on (odd, right?) so I wasn’t too worried about that, even though there aren’t many plants around to sustain them just now. I suspect your pretty hellebores are doing what they can to keep the insects happy!

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    1. It has been a lovely sunny day here so I spent it outside – but I’ll be back indoors for the rest of the week. We’re forecast wet and windy weather with possibly some hail showers – yuck! But things are starting to grow again. 🙂

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    1. Thanks Jill! The way hellebore petals are marked always pleases me. It’s amazing the variety that they have. My neighbour brought me some hellebore flowers from her garden and they have delicate spots on the petals. Of course I’ve photographed them now too… 🙂

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