Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day: Is it really March?

Can this only be March 15 and Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day? The temperature feels like late April, but before you run to the nursery and get tender plants, please don’t. This weekend, Oklahoma is forecasted to get down to 34°F which is too cold for tender tropicals–the basis of our summer gardens. We may still get a freeze too. Remember, April 20 is our last average freeze date.  You’ve been warned. If you simply must, bring those flats home and let them sit in the house for a couple of weeks. You can move them in and out everyday. Doesn’t that sound fun?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve done that over the years.

Helleborus x hyb. Ballerine Mix that's grown in my front bed for years.
Helleborus x hyb. Ballerina Mix that’s grown in my front bed for years. It’s now really strutting its stuff.

Alternatively, you can go buy yourself a new hellebore. That will help stave off spring fever for a week or so. I’ve bought five so far this year. They aren’t cheap, but give them a few seasons, and they will reward you with blooms before anything else even thinks about flowering.

The front border is just beginning to take off in March.
The front border is just beginning to take off in March. ‘Jane’ magnolia is the centerpiece this time of year.

My front border is planted to really show off in spring. I felt like people on the garden tour didn’t get to see the front gardens at their best because it was fall. ‘Jane’ magnolia always blooms pretty early with the redbuds, and it is often ruined by late freezes. I hope this won’t happen this spring. Maybe it will. Maybe it won’t. You’ve got to roll with the punches in gardening. It’s a humbling hobby.

Another view of the front border shows that the daffodils are in the middle of their bloom cycle with the tulips just beginning. Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day
Another view of the front border shows that the daffodils are in the middle of their bloom cycle with the tulips just beginning.

Most of the daffs in the front border are white with pink cups which means they are actually apricot. I used Van Engelen’s Smoldering Tangerine/Pink tulip collection this year. The jury is still out on whether I like it better than the collection I used the year before.

Below is one of the prettiest vignettes blooming so far. My sixteen-year-old daughter told me this morning that it is Instagram worthy. That made me happy.

Another pretty vignette in the garage border.
Another pretty vignette in the garage border.

In another corner of the front yard, my Hamamelis ‘Arnold’s Promise’ is blooming for all its worth.

'Arnold's Promise' hamamelis witch hazel
‘Arnold’s Promise’ hamamelis witch hazel. That color! That scent!

It also smells like honey. How many plants do that?

In the garden border, the blooms are just starting.
In the garden border, the blooms are just starting.

Let’s take a walk around back to the garage border where things are just starting to get interesting. I have so many narcissus in here that when I plant something, I dig up two more. I just replant them in another spot. Most of these are white with ‘Thalia’ being predominant. The double-flowering white narcissus is ‘Rose of May.’ I bought both at Old House Gardens. The multiply each year and smell delicious in the mornings. I love the little heirloom narcissus because they do their thing and fade away.

The garage border from the opposite view.
The garage border from the opposite view.

The tulips are just beginning. It won’t be long until the bed is full. People ask me if the tulips return year after year. No, they don’t. They’re hybrids that are bred to give one year’s good show. I pull them after blooming. Maybe that seems extravagant, but it’s like using any other annual, and after winter, I need the color.

Leucojum aestivum is one of the best bulbs for naturalizing in our gardens. I started with a few from Leslie in California. Now, I'm giving bunches away.
Leucojum aestivum is one of the best bulbs for naturalizing in our gardens. I started with a few from Leslie in California. Now, I’m giving bunches away.

Last week, it rained twice, and we got half an inch each time. That’s why the grass is starting to green up and grow. The shrubs in the photo below are ‘Ogon’ spireas. Just a week ago, they were covered with white blossoms. They looked like snow mounds. Sorry I didn’t get a photo then, but I think they’re still nice with their lemon-yellow leaves. At the bottom of the hill is a mound of clover. I’ve been working for years to increase the clover in my yard. I know many people don’t want it, but it helps the bees and makes for a more diverse lawn. It’s also a nitrogen fixer, and you can make clover chains with it. I did as a girl.

Looking from the garage border to the back garden.
Looking from the garage border to the back garden.

Plus, clover is pretty. Last fall, we planted lots of pansies and violas in the back garden because we had some open areas that needed filling for the tour. I’m glad we had such a mild winter because they all came through and are growing so well. Pansies in Oklahoma planted in the fall sometimes overwinter great, and other years, well, no. Gardening in Oklahoma is always a crapshoot.

Back garden in the morning light.
Back garden in the morning light.

In the potager, we have a few violas and the blooming tatsoi. I need to pull up the tatsoi, but the little honeybees have enjoyed it so much I just keep stalling.

Purple violas in the potager from last fall.
Purple violas in the potager from last fall.
Tatsoi blooming in the potager.
Tatsoi blooming in the potager.

That’s all I’ve got blooming this month. Thanks for stopping by. Go visit Carol’s blog, May Dreams Gardens for more Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day goodness.

 

 

26 Comments

  1. mjarz says:

    Your photos are lovely! I think I can actually feel the spring air! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Les says:

    This is indeed the month for spring bulbs, and yours are beautiful.

  3. That double hellebore in the header is just killing me every time I see it! I might have to acquire that one. So far, I have three different hellebores, all purchased at big box stores years back, so they are nothing unique. They are beautiful, of course, but I think I need some “fancier” varieties!

  4. Thank goodness spring is underway. We are looking at lower temps this weekend too. Fingers crossed for the hydrangeas.

    1. Dee Nash says:

      Yes, fingers crossed here too although all my hydrangeas bloom on new wood. I just can’t the grow the other types. It’s too hard in my part of Oklahoma.

  5. Jeanette says:

    It is always a delight to tour your garden. You have such a diverse selection of plants. The pink tulips are a lovely shade. I didn’t know witch hazel had a honey scent. We are supposed to get cold weather next week also.

    1. Dee Nash says:

      Jeanette, I can’t say if the other witch hazels have the same scent or not, because they bloom earlier, and I haven’t noticed much scent. However ‘Arnold’s Promise’ definitely smells like honey to me. Scent is so personal though. It might smell like roses to someone else. Thanks so much for your kind words.

  6. Layanee says:

    Oh my, it is truly spring in your garden. Love the tulip/daffodil combination but all your blooms are beautiful. Just beautiful!

    1. Dee Nash says:

      Thank you Layanee!

  7. Really lovely Dee. Do you pull the spent tulips after they have finished blooming or leave them to see if they will bloom the following year? Nice logo by the way! xo

  8. Shirley says:

    Gorgeous color combinations in the bulb border. Instagram worthy is definitely it. Love the Hellebore and all your spring blooms. If we get a freeze now so many things will be zapped. As you say it is humbling every year to learn the gardener is not in charge.

    1. Dee Nash says:

      Thank you Shirley. Yes, gardening makes us humble.

  9. Spring has sprung there! Love the purple violas.

  10. lbpv says:

    So pretty!

    1. Dee Nash says:

      Thank you much!

  11. Your garden is simply gorgeous and I will visit it someday. And thank you so much for reminding people not to plant those hot weather guys too soon!

    1. Dee says:

      Linda, I so want you to come visit. You are always welcome. Yes, we need to keep reminding readers and ourselves not to buy warm weather plants The weather tries to fool us, and the nursery owners won’t tell us not to buy.

  12. Hasn’t this month been a wild ride, cold, hot and I hear cold is coming back. What a delight is that front border. Your daughter is right about that pink vignette. Wow. I am not familiar with Tatsoi. If the bees and bugs like it I do too. Happy GBBD.

    1. Dee says:

      Hey Lisa, tatsoi is a great vegetable to eat. It’s very similar to bok choy. I love it. I just didn’t eat this fast enough so it bloomed. It’s been so pretty. I need to pull it, but I just can’t. Thank you for your sweet words about the front garden.

  13. Jenny says:

    That hellebore is stunning. I think it really is spring at your house with all those tulips and daffodils. I hope they stick around for Easter. We would welcome a little cold over here but not in the 30s thank you. I hope you escape a frost.

    1. Dee says:

      Hey Jenny, yes we could use a little bit cooler days. I hope that the meteorologist is wrong about lows in the 30s. Keeping my fingers crossed.

  14. Leslie says:

    Just lovely Dee! Those colors must cheer your heart…they do mine.

    1. Dee says:

      Oh yes, they do! Thank you Leslie. I’m glad they cheered you too.

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