March 26, 2021

Springtime Magic

tommies 1

We seem to be having an early, pleasant start to spring this year, here in Southern Wisconsin. It's been warm enough to encourage the first spring blooms, and cool enough to keep them blooming for many days. Some have been pummeled with rain showers; while those in bud before the rain continue the show.

Here's a mix of outdoor highlights.


The Snowdrops (Galanthus spp.) started the excitement, and they seem to have an exceptionally long bloom time. They still look roughly like this photo, which was taken a couple of weeks ago.

tommies 2

The Tommies (Crocus tommasinianus) followed soon after, and some are still blooming today.

Several patches of Dutch Crocuses (C. vernus) are also blooming here and there.


And the Daffodil (Narcissus spp.) parade has begun, starting with the tiny 'Tete-a-Tetes.'


A few others are blooming, too, but their display will peak in the days ahead.


Same for the Hellebores (Helleborus orientalis), most of which are just on the verge of fully opening.

We've had a nice mix of bright, sunny days and rainy, life-encouraging days. The sun has coaxed the indoor plants to grow and bloom, as well.

fuchsia 1

I've been thrilled to see that the 'Marinka' Fuchsias I overwintered are actually blooming already! I won't be able to put them outside until late April or early May, but they'll brighten the sunroom until then.

fuchsia 2

I divided and propagated the 'Autumnale' Fuchsias, so I should have plenty to fill more hanging baskets and planters. The foliage on this hybrid is ever-changing.


The Purple Shamrocks (Oxalis triangularis) continue their long lives as great companions to the ever-growing and hardy English Ivy (Hedera helix), some of which even survived two weeks of polar weather in an outdoor pot!


I saved two varieties of Kalanchoe (K. blossfeldiana) that were included in condolence bouquets. They'll be happier outside in the summer sun, but I'm thrilled that they're actually blooming again.


The Gerber Daisy (G. jamesonii) never fails to flower this time of year. The foliage is a little ragged, but wow--those blooms! The foliage will thrive outside this summer with its other potted companions.

It does appear we're on a slow, but steady trend toward warmth, and it's encouraging to know even more garden excitement is just around the corner. Many, many plants are emerging, but they will have to wait for a future post...

March 10, 2021

Wordless Wednesday: Prairie Comparisons

prairie late winter
March: prairie just before snowmelt
[Click on images to enlarge for detail.]

December: prairie before the snow