Friday, January 27, 2012

Spring bulbs are starting to bloom...


Ah...the promise of spring.

When renewal is in the air and the garden begins to awaken from a long winter's nap. Well, not really this year. It was more like a quick cat nap.

I love it when the early spring bulbs start coming up and making buds. The daffodils, the muscari, the irises ... they are are all putting on their finery.

These are the true harbingers of spring.

And they are some of my favorite favorites in the garden. (I really have too many favorites to count.)

I'm especially fond of the daffodils - there are up to 200 different species of them. I just have a handful of the different varieties, but it's so much fun to see how unique they can be.

Japanese quince is another reliable plant that signals the arrival of spring. I think of it as an nice old historic plant - you often find very large ones in the gardens of older homes in central Austin. I imagine them being lovingly planted decades ago and being cared for by successive families over the years.

Mine is still small, but those delicate salmony-rose blooms are sure to bring a smile to my face every time I pass by.
These sweet little peeks are traditional muscari (grape hyacinths) that came home from the grocery store with me in a mixed bulb pot and then found their way into the garden to bloom another day. And bloom they do. This will be their third year to perk up the mulch on a drab day.
These are very special little specimens -- muscari golden fragrance. Unlike most muscari, these are not the tell-tale purple, but rather a soft yellow and they have a wonderful scent. They are very low to the ground - about 5 inches high - so I literally have to get down on the ground to get a whiff of them. But it's worth it!
Are you enjoying any early season bloomers in your garden yet?