Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most

All alone, the party’s over,
Old man Winter was a gracious host;
But when you keep praying for snow to hide the clover
Spring Can Really Hang You Up The Most!
~ lyricist Fran Landesman

A quick post in a busy week, the last week of classes. It snowed, frost descended, then spring came back in all its glory. Here are a few photos of the garden, which survived the rollercoaster weather better than expected. More next week . . .

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I love this song; here is a YouTube link to Ella Fitzgerald singing it with her fantastic grace and style.

The Lenten Rose

Helleborus. Latin for hellebore, a perennial flowering plant from Europe and Asia. Most of the hybrid hellebores found in gardens in North America and Europe are often called the Lenten Rose, since they bloom in February and March, during the Lenten season.  Many years ago, a friend gave me two Lenten Roses from her parents’ garden in the mountains of Virginia. I brought them with me from my former garden and have let them seed about, resulting in flowers ranging from cream to pink to dark rose.  This year, they began blooming two weeks earlier than usual, a welcome sight in a dreary winter.  Today, more blooms have opened, including a few rarer ones purchased for their dark mysterious colors.

Deer resistant, first to bloom in spring, happy in shade or sun, dry or wet, and dressed in handsome leathery foliage, this is a plant for all gardens.  Enjoy the gallery of photos!

For more beautiful hellebore photos, including double forms and unusual colors, visit:
Pine Knot Farms
Northwest Garden Nursery
Sunshine Farm and Gardens
The Lenten Rose

To learn more about the beautiful hellebore, including its history and its variations, visit: hellebores.org
The Lovely Lenten Rose 

Think spring!  More music next week.

Promises, Promises!

“. . . promises can lead to joy and hope and love, yes love.”  lyricist Hal David

As many others have commented lately, this is a mild winter, the one that allows you to see everything without a protective blanket of snow. Snow, often referred to as “white mulch” by northern gardeners, is preferable as it protects the plants through harsh conditions and fixes nitrogen in the soil. But I can never bring myself to eschew a mild bare winter where I can actually see the garden. If you grow perennials and shrubs, you have a lot to look at in January.

On a stroll through the garden this morning, I saw Continue reading