April continues to bring floral surprises on an almost daily basis, so this month’s GBBD is inevitably a veritable feast. I often search my GBBD posts to remind myself when something was blooming as the meme is useful record keeping tool and I am grateful to Carol of May Dreams Gardens for hosting it. Do visit her blog to check out links to other blogs and see what is blooming in mid April in other parts of the world.
The most recent surprise here is the lovely erythronium above, E Pagoda, which has reappeared for the third year, increasing my confidence of it being a permanent feature. Having planted about 100 tulips in the shrub border in the autumn it is too soon to say whether they will return annually, but many of them are Darwin tulips which supposedly are more reliable than some; I hadn’t, however, realised that Darwin tulips are very much larger than most of the other varieties I have, almost OTT, but perhaps I will get used to them. Although labelled, winter mulching seems to have temporarily covered many of the labels, but in the border are Burgundy, China Pink, Design Impression, Hakuun, Huis ten Bosch, Ollioules and Sake so the following pictures include some of those:
There is no doubt about the stickability of species tulips and existing clumps like this one of ‘Little Beauty’ get bigger and better every year. I now share a bulb order withe two friends and one of them is enjoying Little Beauty for the first time this year and is totally enamoured with her.
Elsewhere, more tulips than usual seem to have hung around for another year, perhaps benefitting from the deeper planting I have tried to give them. I am going to replant all this year’s pot grown tulips in the borders rather than have lots of pots hanging round just in case the tulips regrow. This grouping is in one of the bold borders:
Other than bulbs, Dicentra (Lamprocapnos) is always one of the herbaceous plants to emerge and flower in spring, and this one is certainly full of the joys, weighed down with hundreds of little hearts, seemingly dripping of its stems like wet washing:
Brunnera ‘Jack Frost’ is similarly reliable, quickly making a little leafy clump again in the blue & white borders:
I have been growing Cool Wave violas from seed for the last 3 years or so, purple for baskets at the front of the house, white for the green & white snowdrop border, and violet ‘Frost’ (below) for pots on the paved area in full view of the kitchen windows. They are so easy to grow from seed and the germination rate is invariably 100%, so I highly recommend them. These have double early Tulip ‘Aveyron’ to follow, although not so early when compared with other tulips coming into flower already.
Rhododendron ‘Cheer’ is in full sugar pink frothy bloom in the woodland now, but for the first time is joined in the woodland edge border by a large unknown but also pink and frothy rhododendron which must have been languishing for perhaps 10 years or more without much activity. Why it is suddenly flowering now I cannot imagine, but am not complaining.
The blossom on crab apple ‘Evereste’ is now joined by that of ‘Golden Hornet’ and ‘Royalty’ but the gorgeous pink blossom on the old apple trees is going to look as impressive as ever, particularly against a blue sky like that we saw more than expected of today:
Last but by no means least, do I need an excuse to show the most floriferous April blooms again? TOUGH, because here is the clematis colonnade again…