Rain Before Dawn

A supremely spring-like day yesterday stirred a few of the garden’s early achievers and an early morning rain today left them freshly washed.

Daffodils suddenly are awake all around the garden. These are Narcissus ‘King Alfred’.

Narcissus 'King Alfred' (trumpet daffodil)

Narcissus ‘King Alfred’ (trumpet daffodil)

This little blue friend still could use a bath. It was a muddy job pushing its way out into the sunlight. Pseudomuscari azureum (syn. Muscari azureum), the azure grape hyacinth features a bright blue color with a darker blue stripe on each flower. In the Pseudomuscari genus the mouth of the flowers is shaped like an open bell, rather than narrowing the way it does on Muscari.

Pseudomuscari azureum (syn. Muscari azureum)

Pseudomuscari azureum (syn. Muscari azureum)

Narcissus ‘Tete-a-Tete’ opened just overnight it seems.

Narcissus 'Tete-a-Tete' (Tete-a-Tete Daffodil)

Narcissus ‘Tete-a-Tete’ (Tete-a-Tete Daffodil)

An inexpensive impulse purchase from the grocery store last fall yielded just one crocus but it has a delicious color.

Crocus

Crocus

Euphorbia has been nice in the garden all winter.

Euphorbia 'Shorty' (Shorty Spurge)

Euphorbia ‘Shorty’ (Shorty Spurge)

Hellebores are blooming well at last. These were planted about 14 years ago when we first moved in.

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Some hyacinths from last year have yet to return but a group of H. orientalis ‘Woodstock’ pushed up way too early into a cold, brutal world. Surprisingly they seem to be recovering.

Hyacinth orientalis ‘Woodstock’

Hyacinth orientalis ‘Woodstock’

23 thoughts on “Rain Before Dawn

  1. Julie

    I have Woodstock Susie, planted for the first time last Autumn and its only just poking up above the soil line. Clearly its a toughie, its quite incredible that something like this can survive in brutal cold.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      You’ll enjoy your Woodstocks Julie. They better off for playing it safe. We had some very early warms days that encouraged mine to come up prematurely, then we had snow and ice several times. So I was surprised to see they survived.

      Reply
  2. Pauline

    Narcissus King Alfred was bred at a farm in the next village to us here. We have a few bulbs in the garden, but I have to admit that I prefer the smaller ones. You are so lucky that your hyacinths have come back for a second year, here in my heavy soil they just disappear!

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Interesting you’re close to the origins of King Alfred. I’ve read ‘King Alfred’ is no longer in commercial production and often large trumpet daffodils may be sold as “improved King Alfred” or “King Alfred type”. Many of my hyacinths from last year disappeared as well (all of the blue ones).

      Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      I have been seeing them on blogs, but mine didn’t seem to be making any progress John. Suddenly today they were blooming. Hope yours follow soon.

      Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Thanks. I hadn’t realized it was going to rain overnight but we actually needed a little bit. This was just right. Enough to water the garden and dress up the flowers for photos.

      Reply
  3. Christina

    Knowing how hot your garden is in summer, Susie, I’m surprised you are so successful with Daffodils and Hellebores, I’m thinking it must be due to the humidity, which I find very interesting.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Certainly there is plenty of humidity! Don’t know how it affects the daffodils though. Everyone has them around here even if they grow nothing else.
      The temperatures early last summer were unprecedented. No one in the state remembered there being such heat as there was when you visited. Hope to return to “normal” hot summer this year!

      Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Hi Stephi. These bits of spring popped up quickly after a warm day or two. It’s cold here again this morning but it’s good to know spring is coming.

      Reply
  4. Cathy

    Lovely to see your refreshed spring flowers again – doesn’t seem so long ago I was admiring your hyacinths and hellebores last spring!

    Reply
  5. gardeninacity

    I really like that Muscari azureum. It looks nice and full – good color, too. I’ve tried two different kinds of Hyacinths over the last two years, but this year I didn’t plant any for some reason.

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      The color on the Muscari azureum drew me to it. I think it needs a better location though. I’m wishing I’d put in new hyacinth bulbs last fall–overestimated how many would return.

      Reply

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