On this fifty-seven degree sunny afternoon, a mild breeze lifts the fragrance of Daphne odora wafting into the air.
Held up by a very cold winter, last year the hellebores began blooming by February 19 and continued through June 20, 2011. This winter they began blooming a month ago on December 30, 2011.
With its scent noticeable for a few weeks now, the aromatic Monarda didyma (Bergamot, Scarlet Beebalm) is growing. Beebalm is native to this area.
Another native, Cercis canadensis L. (Eastern Redbud), is volunteering under the back steps, at least I think this is a redbud.
Magenta Lychnis coronaria (Rose Campion) will be back in the garden this year thanks to a neighbor who shares my passion for these old-fashioned flowers. The garden is full of white rose campion grown from seed, but for some reason the magenta ones, which had been passed-along many years ago by a dear cousin, had disappeared. Rose campion are not native but generally do well in this climate, reseeding easily.