"One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it brings."

Monday, March 2, 2009

My newest pastime.

On days that it ends up being too rainy or cold to do any yard work, I've developed a new pastime:  examining flower buds.  This is when I walk around looking to see how close the buds on various shrubs are to opening.  On plants that aren't as reliable about flowering, I may even go as far as to ever so gently pull the outer leaf back on a bud thats begun to break.  As you many be able to tell, I'm not exactly patient.
I've had this tree peony in this spot for about 3 years.  I had moved it a couple of times before I found a place it had room to grow.  It has taken it's time blooming, although I think that's pretty normal for them, especially after having been moved.  Last year I think I had 3 or 4 huge blooms, so far I can see 2 buds.  There is a lot of new growth on it as well.  The bloom time on tree peonies is usually late spring.
February 19

 March 1

 Another current stop on the examination list is the variegated daphne odora.  It has been taking it's sweet time.  It's been almost 2 months since it's buds started to open.  It's usual bloom time is January to February.  I'm just anxious to smell it's fragrance.

January 12

March 1

This is anther one I've been checking frequently, the pink flowering currant. Its first few years the blooming was sporadic.  A few branches would have flowers and the rest of the shrub would be leaves.  Last year it put on a great show, and I'm hoping it will do so again this year.  According to various sites I found on the internet its bloom time is May through June.  I know mine has always begun to bloom in March.
January 31

March 2

The lilacs will be next.  I have two varieties, syringa vulgaris 'Ludwig Spaeth' and syringa prestoniae 'Miss Canada'.  The second variety blooms around mid June and for a longer period of time after the other lilacs have finished.  They are newer plants in the garden and they really took off growing last year.  Since it takes several years to really get blooming, I think this should be a great year for them.  
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  1. Okay, so I don't feel so bad about constantly checking my blooms as if the more I look at them the faster they will open!

  2. Gotta love this pasttime of examining new flower buds. Lovely, LOVELY tree peony. I had one last year but I think it is dead:(

  3. Well, good thing you live on the western side of the state if you're impatient! We're so far behind you here in Spokane. My hellebore isn't even blooming yet. But the crocus leaves are poking up above ground in a few places, so I'm happy. I've got Katherine Havemeyer lilacs (a Lowe's clearance special) and a white Beauty of Moscow to see bloom for the first time this year, can't wait - VW

  4. Nice closeups Catherine. I've also been examing the buds, waiting for the tiniest changes.Isn't the sunshine wonderful today?

  5. Hi Catherine

    I think we're all secretly just 'checking' at this time of year.

    Flowering currants are just beautiful.


  6. Catherine,

    Better to be checking the blooms too often than to miss the blooming altogether. Thanks for this post.

  7. Hi Catherine, I too have daughters and a little white dog..already we're friends! I'm in NJ and we woke up to 6" of snow and anticipating 10-12..so I'm not out checking my buds..lol..I do have a white tree peony and even though she looks "dead" right now, she produces gorgeous dinner plate blooms. They are slow growers but worth it. I would love more but they are pricey at $100 each unless you spend $40-50 for a smaller one that won't bloom for a couple of years. It'll be fun to "follow" you now that I've found you :)

  8. Examining flower buds huh? Sounds like a great past-time. I'll be interested to see what the currant looks like when in bloom. Looking forward to lots of pictures!

  9. Hi,

    Thank for visiting my blog - I'm so glad you did. I've got a lot to learn about gardening and I'm sure to learn alot from your blog; it's fantastic!

    Love the white doggy...


  10. Darla - I think I'm hoping that it will make them open faster :)

    Tina - Maybe your tree peony will surprise you, mine looks pretty dead until those buds started. It's been growing quickly.

    VW - I don't think I'd make it anywhere the winter is any longer than is here! Your lilacs sound pretty, I hope you get lots of blooms this year on them!

    Melanthia - I'm surprised at how nice it ended up. We're going out after lunch to enjoy it!

    Rob - The anticipation of seeing those blooms is what drives me to the constant checking. The currant should be great this year, it has gotten huge.

    Randy - You're right! There's no chance I'll miss anything anytime soon since I've been out making the rounds frequently!

    Lynn - I'm so glad you came by! The tree peonies don't look so great in the winter do they? This one was pretty inexpensive years ago, because it was a young one. Yours sound beautiful. I'm going to be visiting you blog next! :)

    Susie - It sounds kinda crazy I know :) I'm really looking forward to the younger plants as they mature and start to have more blooms. I'm like a little kid at Christmas!

  11. Nancy - I enjoyed your blog, I remember the tulip pictures. I love the pictures of the lavender fields. Thanks for visiting me and I'll be back to visit you again! :)

  12. There was a year I took a bunch of pics of buds, calling them, "Anticipation" pics. They all got lost when my husband moved things from one computer to another. I am still sad about that.

    I love your series of buds!

  13. Sue - Anticipation sounds a lot better than examining my plants :) It's fun to see the changes since it's hard to remember how quickly it happens. This is a perfect time of year for you to start a new series of "Anticipation" pics :)

  14. Catherine, Really beautiful shots. There are so many gardens (blogs) that I just can't wait to see in full bloom- yours is definitely in the top 10! Great idea for passing the time when you can't work out in the garden.

  15. Pretty buds but I'm glad you aren't pregnant. Some things don't need rushing.

  16. Oh, I was definitely out there checking today, right there with you on that. Still no daphne blooms here either, I think they are all a bit delayed this year due to the weather. My clematis armandii is looking sickly as usual for this time of year but it hasn't bloomed yet, which I think it atypical. I wonder if the rest of the growing year is going to be delayed or will the later poker-uppers/bloomers just get back on schedule? Hm. Cool tree peony, I might have to get one of those someday. - Karen

  17. Buds are fascinating. It is sad to see when they drop off. It takes a longer time period for them to redevelop.

  18. That's SO totally me in about 2 months! Nothing going on just yet here though. I don't venture into the snow piles too much until the snow recedes more. I hate getting snow in my boots!

  19. Tesaa - Thanks :) I can't wait to see it either! I'm looking forward to seeing your garden as well. You will have so much to eat and so many flowers I'll be jealous!

    Anna - I was terribly impatient when I was pregnant although I definitely knew I couldn't/shouldn't rush that!! :)

    Karen - I've been wondering about that too. It seems that most of my other plants are on schedule, and I was just looking at my clematis and it's beginning to look like it might bloom. I think the daphne is waiting until next winter.

    Pat and Abe - I think they are fascinating too. I'm sad when a bud gets knocked off since then I won't be able to enjoy it, especially on plants that take a long time to finally give you one.

    Cinj - Glad I'm not the only one. Snow over your boots is still a lot of snow. I'm sure your garden will be worth the wait! :)

  20. Oh - The fragrance of Winter Daphne!!! I miss that so much. At my husband's old house there was a giant old-timer Daphne that bloomed profusely and we would just drink it in... but, the shrub became so heavy that it cracked right down the middle of the main trunk and I guess some creepy-crawlies got in there n' killed poor Daphne. I didn't know enough about plants then to wrap or paint over the wound to try and help. The plant was nearly 30 years old! Hubby's Mom planted it when he bought the house. That's pretty old. Happy bloom-watching!! Bonnie

  21. How exciting to have flower buds already! Mine are a ways away yet, darn it!

  22. I LOVE THESE PHOTOS.... you have chosen a wonderful pass time. :-)
    Warm Wishes on this BLOOM TUESDAY!!!


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