|Welcome to my April Garden!|
Welcome to Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day and Foliage Follow-Up for the month of April, a time when gardeners venture into their surroundings to appreciate all the beauty that nature has to offer. During these uncertain times around the world, I have been finding the garden to be a place of refuge, solitude and peace now more than ever. Having been somewhat on hold from traveling to the gardens of my clients, I now spend up to four to five hours a day doing what I love most...pruning, weeding, planting and putting my hands in the dirt. As a matter of fact, the dirtier my hands and the infamous purple Crocs become signifies the total productivity of the day.
Spring temperatures and earlier than usual blooms have been the trend this gardening season. In past years, it has been way to chilly to work outdoors in April, but everything is accelerated. Weeds are on the verge, shrubs are pushing out new growth, blooms are popping up everywhere and the lawn is growing like crazy! Days have been mostly clear with temperatures topping in the upper 50's and low 60's, setting the stage for a pleasant and enjoyable gardening experience. As we take time to be thankful for nature's beauty, come take a stroll with me in my garden.
|Helleborus orientalis 'Dark and Handsome'|
One of my favorite blooms to transition from winter to spring are Helleborus, otherwise known as Lenten Rose. I love them for the fact that they start blooming in January (depending on the variety) and keep going all the way through April. This one is called 'Dark and Handsome' and rightfully so. It's gorgeous purplish-black blooms are irresistible!
|Helleborus orientalis 'Champion'|
This Helleborus 'Champion' is new to the garden this season. Right before the pandemic broke out, I had gone to a local nursery with a friend and spotted them. I did not buy them right away, but after one night of "sleeping on it", I quickly ventured back to purchase the only three that they had. It had been a purchase that was meant to be.
|Helleborus orientalis 'Merlin'|
Helleborus 'Merlin', planted last year, is another beauty similar to 'Shooting Star', only a bit more pink in color. Also on the northern side of the property are Helleborus 'Shooting Star'. Their blooms are fading up now, since they first opened all the way back in January. All together, I have the four varieties, varying in color and bloom time. Could there be room for more? Fun Fact: Helleborus are hardy in USDA zones 4-8 and prefer to be grown in partial to full shade. The reason why their blooms have such a long lifespan is due to the fact that what appears as petals are actually sepals.
|Hellebore 'Champion' Pool Garden|
Here are the latest additions in their new home, comfortably positioned just outside the canopy of this Weeping White Pine, sheltered in shade from the afternoon sun.
|Weeping Pussy Willow (Salix caprea 'Pendula')|
Follow me around to the outer perimeter of the backyard patio where you'll see Weeping Pussy Willow (Salix caprea 'Pendula') loaded with fluffy white catkins. They are now opening to expose their yellow pollen, providing an attraction for pollinators.
|Weeping Pussy Willow Catkin|
Every spring the birds migrate to this tree and plan their nesting site. As mentioned in the past, there is a lot of competition for this prime piece of real estate! Throughout the entire day there is much chirping and activity to be seen in the branches above.
|Flowering Plum Prunus cerasifera Krauter Vesuvius|
Venturing over to the southern fence line is the new flowering plum that replaced the troubled one last summer. The previous tree had a missing buttress root, making the tree very unstable. After a battle to keep it healthy, it had to be replaced. This is the first bloom for this new tree that I have gotten to experience and I must say I am loving it!
|Flowering Plum (Prunus cerasifera Krauter Vesuvius) Blooms|
Here you can see the blooms close up. Flowering Plum blooms are small, but so delicate and fragrant. The deep burgundy foliage that follows really makes a statement in the landscape.
|View From Back Patio|
I hope you are enjoying the tour so far. I am always talking about the different sections of the garden, so let's try something new. Come take a seat in my favorite chair and view the garden as I see it every morning. You are facing west right now and the blooming Magnolia tree is to the north. The flowering Plum is to the south, so that would be located towards the far left side of the pool area.
|Magnolia stellata 'Royal Star'|
Now that you have a sense of direction, we are headed back to the northwestern side of the property (to the right of the pool area) to see the Magnolia up close. It might be my imagination, but I think with the mild winter this is the best bloom this tree has shown yet.
|Magnolia 'Royal Star' Bloom|
Here are the blooms close up. If you want fragrance, this is the tree for you!
|Peony 'Bartzella' Foliage|
Right in front of the west facing patio is Peony 'Bartzella' showing its brand new deep burgundy foliage before it turns to green. Large yellow blooms will follow in May, so look out for those in next months post!
Hyacinth is a reliable bulb that produces fragrant long-lasting blooms in early spring. As you know, it is available in an assortment of colors including pink, salmon, yellow, white and the purple one seen here. Tip: Hyacinths grow best in zones 4-8 and require a period of colder temperatures in order to bloom.
There have been generation after generation of bunnies in the garden over the years and to my good fortune they have been well behaved and respectful of their surroundings. This visitor remained in the same place under a spirea shrub for an entire day and didn't even flinch with strollers passing by. I think it may be a mamma looking for a place to have her babies. Time will tell.
|Spirea 'Limemound' Foliage|
Here is the foliage on the Spirea 'Goldmound' starting to emerge.
In the perennial border, the miniature Daffodils are blooming along with Hyacinth and remaining Crocus, while the foliage of Allium, Hosta, Astilbe, Daylily, Stachys, Salvia and Echinacea grows taller by the day.
|Nepeta 'Walkers Low'|
In the southern bed, Nepeta 'Walkers Low' is starting to appear.
|Backyard Patio Garden|
Everyday brings something new to explore as a renewal of life accelerates again in the garden. It comes at a good time.
On the patio, "winter bear", transitions into "spring bear"...
and the new miniature garden added last season has over-wintered very well. Left to right is Variegated Boxwood, Compact Juniper and Golden Dwarf Hinoki Cypress. The addition of mulch, decorative logs and a small rock add to its character.
|Tulips to Make You Smile!|
To end the tour are these tulips, which grow just across the street in Mrs. O'Hara's garden. She is the gardener next door who I've lovingly written about in my latest book. Having grown up and remained in the same home all my life, she has been like a second mom to me, and it is Mrs. O'Hara who has greatly influenced my passion of gardening since childhood.
Stay safe and well and I hope you too can find refuge and peace in the garden. I thank you for being here, hope you enjoyed your visit, and perhaps got a smile along the way. 🙂Special thanks go out to our hostess Carol at May Dreams Gardens, who makes it possible to see blooms on the 15th of every month with her meme Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day. Also, special thanks to Pam Penick at Digging who has hosted Foliage Follow-Up for all these years, a meme I will still continue to honor. I am also linking with some other wonderful hosts and hostesses at Floral Friday Fotos, Macro Monday 2, Mosaic Monday at Letting Go of the Bay Leaf, Nature Notes at Rambling Woods, Dishing It & Digging It on Sunday with Angie the Freckled Rose, Image-in-ing weekly photo share every Tuesday with NC Sue and Gardens Galore Link Up Party every other Monday with Everyday Living. I am also happy to join the Homestead Blog Hop and Weekly Photo Link-Up at My Corner of the World on Wednesdays.
|April Garden-Thanks for Visiting!|
Looking for some garden reading?-Visit my Author Page
Dream, Garden, Grow!-Musings of a Lifetime Gardener
As Always...Happy Gardening! 😊
Author: Lee@A Guide to Northeastern Gardening,© Copyright 2010-2020. All rights reserved.