Things are finally beginning to get colorful, although the weather remains erratic, going from 80 degrees Fahrenheit at the beginning of the week to 65 today. But, no tornadoes this week, so no complaints from me. The featured photo keys my first entry this week, a bed of brown bearded irises that went from one bloom on Wednesday to multiple blooms today.
1. In a couple of weeks this bed will have blue irises as well. I wish that I could give specific names for both, but those were lost some time in the past. My record keeping has improved, but overall remains noticeably lax. Nonetheless, what I’m illustrating below is not what will be but what opened wonderfully in the past couple of days, going from one to five fully opened irises.
In both photos, some purple flowers are seen among the bearded irises. They are prairie phlox, or downy phlox, (Phlox pilosa), a native wildflower that flourishes in this area of the garden. The little yellow specks seen in the photo to the left are two-flower dwarf-dandelions (Krigia biflora), another native wildflower.
2. The downy phlox deserves its own entry. Here it blooms with accompanying hellebores and the small, white-flowered native flea bane. And, as you can see another grouping of irises is working toward its show time.
3. In the oval bed across the bridge dianthus and candy tuft are flowering. Stella D’Oro daylilies, corcosmia, fever few, and more irises among other perennials, are gearing up for later color. Rosie, of course checks things out periodically.
4. In the background of the photo above, three Tsutsusi azaleas (Rhododendron indicum) have grown hedge-like over the past 20 years. They are not at all photogenic during 11 months of he year, but during one month they are grand–and bees love their flowers.
5. In the fall, I planted some Dutch iris bulbs among stonecrop in a concrete planter on a little patio wall outside the front door. This is the first of them to bloom, but it looks as though a few more will soon. I’m please to see any of them at all because all winter I had to fill in squirrel diggings in the stonecrop. These photos were taken early in the morning before dew dried on the falls and standards.
6. An update on my glass block experiment mentioned on 27 March provides the last of my six this week. The liriope is beginning to fill in between the blocks and the forsythia has gone from yellow blooms to rich green leaves. The shade loving hosta and the oakleaf hydrangea will eventually be replaced with something more colorful and sun loving–then the ability of the blocks to reflect sun will really be put to the test. In the meantime, I am sure you’ll find many more experiments and creative ideas at the site of the Propagator and the sites linked in the comments to his page. Guidelines for joining in can be found there as well.