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

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Hearts and Bells

Two of my spring favorites have just started to bloom, I think they liked all of the sun that we had earlier in the week.  Today the rain is back so I'm glad I took these pictures yesterday.
The first ones are my Bleeding hearts (dicentra spectabilis).  Many years ago, when I still rented an apartment, I remember seeing pictures of these in a magazine.  I begged my Mom to plant one in her garden so I could see what those heart flowers looked like up close.  She did, and under her green thumb it was the biggest bleeding heart I think I've ever seen.  Now I have several of them, both pink and white.  The white are a bit behind though and not quite in bloom yet.  I love how they start out from the ground and just get bigger and bigger.    

One of my other spring favorites are the Spanish Bluebells (hyacinthoides hispanicus).  These will naturalize fairly easily and I have them in several places in the yard.  I think I've mentioned before that my older daughter used to like to dig these up and spread them around while they were blooming.  Now when I see them blooming or coming up in an unusual place I think about her.  The ones that ended up in the sunnier spots are definitely farther ahead.  

And here is the first spring bouquet of the season!  I like using old canning jars or small baby food jars as vases.  Since I'm no floral designer they just go along with the simple bouquets I put together.  Happy Earth Day!
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  1. I love using old canning jars as vases too! Beautiful!! I think I have some bleeding heart growing in a flower bed...this is our first spring in this home, so lots of newbies are popping up! How do you make yours grow so well? How do you propagate it?

  2. Very pretty blooms....is your bleeding heart in the sun or shade? The one I planted is still not up, it's in the shade, can I dig it up and try again? Probably will...I love how your flowers just arrange themselves in the canning jar, you are my kind of florist!!

  3. The vase is so pretty, Catherine. I like to use old stuff too and I think it just makes us feel more comfortable. I believe that my bleeding heart yet to be planted is the same. Hope mine does as well as yours. Your bluebells are gorgeous. Such a nice color. Happy gardening...(after the rain) Becca..

  4. I love both of those two. We gave my MIL a Dicentra spectabilis over 10 years ago and it's beautiful every spring. I love your photos -- they just glow -- and the arrangement in the vase is lovely.

  5. PS Is that Lithodora in the vase? It's yummy!

  6. The bouquet is beautiful! Love the idea of using a canning jar. My bleeding hearts are just starting to come up. No blooms yet in my Zone 6 garden in New England. They are in partial shade. One plant is huge and usually grows to about 3 feet across. I have to cut it back after it blooms because it tends it take over.

  7. Happy Earth Day to you! Love the bleeding heart. Wonderful photos.

  8. Catherine I swear I learn something new blogging every day. I've never seen the Spanish Bluebells before and they are really pretty. I love Bleeding Heart. My big one is coming back good but I lost my newer one (looks like the wild kind). Fortunately my girlfriend gave me a wild one from her woods and it is doing great. Hmmm did I know there were white ones? I'm not sure.
    Love your canning jar vase - and here I've been picking up vases at garage sales all this time. I have quite a collection now though. I do lousy arrangements in vases. My daughter picks them and they look great right out of her hand into the vase. And would you believe my husband does beautiful arrangements. When I was in the hospital a couple of years ago in July-August he brought one in to me and we had every female employee coming in to see it - especially after learning he did it. And every year he picks 'the last bouquet of summer' and brings it to me. Whatta guy! I'll post some of his bouquets sometime later.

  9. They look great together! Made for each other! How perfect the hearts are!

  10. Wow! Great pics! One of these days I MUST grow bleeding-heart. So graceful and sweet. Do deer demolish it?

  11. Love the pink and purple comboW
    Bleeding hearts are one of my many favorites.

    Happy Earth Day!

  12. allenaim - Oh, I hope you do have some! You probably are having fun finding all those surprises. Occasionally I will find volunteers, but I still haven't figured out if they come from the roots or seeds of my plants. Sometimes I try to divide them, but it's not usually very successful for me.

    Darla - Mine are all in part shade and that seems to be what they like. I hope yours does show up, but most of them are pretty far up by now. I've never planted them bare root so maybe they take longer to start.

    Becca - I hope yours grow well for you. It takes them a couple of years to get going, and then they take off.

    sweet bay - Thanks, I think they look sweet all together like that. It's actually not lithodora although the flowers look very alike. This is called 'Navelwort' or omphalodes. It's a shade ground cover and it's covered in flowers now.

    Ellie Mae - Thanks! Yes, they do get huge don't they?! I cut mine back too or else nothing around them gets any sun.

    Town Mouse - Thanks!

    Linda - There was a small bunch of these when we moved in, and now thanks to my daughter we've got them all over! I like the wild bleeding heart, and I'd like to add some to my shaded area. Some of the nurseries around here have native plants and that's probably where I'll have to get them. I can't wait to see your husbands flower arrangements! I think that's great that he brings you that last bouquet of the summer, very romantic!

    Chandramouli - Don't they look great together? As the hearts open more the white part shows even more. I'll take pictures of them then too.

    Bonnie - I think you should get some! I keep seeing them in the nurseries now. I don't know about the deer, luckily they don't come up to where we live.

    Mary Jane - They really do have some of prettiest and unusual flowers around I think!

  13. I enjoy your posts a lot! Thanks for always sharing your new emergents.

  14. Hi! My name is Lindsay and I run a blog called Frugal and Fabulous. I'm currently running a giveaway for a one year subscription to Flower Magazine. I thought this was something you might be interested in! :) I'd love for you to enter!

    The direct link is here: http://www.frugalandfabulous.org/2009/04/giveaway-subscription-to-flower.html

  15. Happy Earth Day to you too! I was just telling Gail here in Tennessee how intrigued I was with the Washington state gardens since they are so different yet so much alike ours here and here is yet another post that shows it. My bleeding hearts have been blooming for over a month now, yet the Spanish bluebells just opened today. I love your bouquet and you must tell us your mother's secret for ginormous bleeding hearts. She sounds like a good gardener like you.

  16. Your pictures are breathtaking. I have one bleeding heart plant and many of the Spanish Bluebells that I love. Such bright, happy little plants.

  17. Love your close up photo of the bleeding heart Catherine. We are not so fond of the Spanish bluebell on this side of the pond as they are crowding out our native species but they do look attractive.

  18. So pretty! My bleeding heart doesn't have as many blooms this year as it normally does.... when do you fertilize yours? I think I applied kelp meal the first week in march....

  19. I have the same tendency to use jam jars and the like as vases. Love your spring blooms, happy earth day to you as well! My dicentra was covered by a brush pile in early spring so I hope it does bloom eventually...

  20. Those are two great favorites Catherine. I am desperately wanting some of those bluebells. Just like the hellebores, I've been seeing them around this spring and now they're on my list to order/plant this fall. That macro shot of the bleeding heart is spectacular!
    PS Your climate seems like it would be perfect for foxgloves ~ interesting you don't have any seedlings this year?? I wonder what's up? I'll keep working on the secret to overwintering them because I really, really want them in my garden!

  21. Those Bleeding Hearts are unbelievable. I must really look into whether or not I can grow it myself. That's what I like about garden blogs, some times you find something incredible.

  22. Mixed bluebells in my garden are now pinkbells, since the other colors died out quickly.

    I saw bleeding hearts with tiny buds at the chain store today; wish I'd bought them even though the space where they need to grow wasn't ready. Yours are so pretty.

  23. Lanny - Thanks, this time of year there's practically something new everyday.

    Lindsay - Thanks, I'll take a look.

    Tina- It has been interesting since I started following blogs to see how all over the place blooms are. Most of yours does seem pretty close or just a little ahead. My Mom definitely has a green thumb, I think the main thing she does is adds compost every spring.

    Mildred - They really are pretty and unusual flowers on both aren't they.

    Anna- Thanks. I see that there is an English bluebell and they are different. I hope you will post pictures.

    Nat - Really all I do is water them and add compost around them in the spring. I think mine just like where they are. Maybe more blooms will come on in another week or two, sometimes mine have some late blooms.

    Karen - They are fairly tough and I bet it will still come up.

    Kathleen - I hope you can find some bluebells, there are several color available.
    It's funny I was just noticing the lack of foxgloves a couple of days ago. I've never planted any because they always reseed and this year there aren't any. I think it might just gotten too cold for them this winter.

    Prospero - I hope you find you can grow them. They are so pretty in early spring. Don't you just love seeing plants you've never heard of? My wish list keeps getting longer.

    NellJean - The pink ones are very pretty too. These ones are so tough, you can't kill them. But they aren't aggressive either.
    Maybe you can go back and pick up that bleeding heart :)

  24. Oh I think you did a great job putting your bouquet together. I wouldn't mind having one of those sitting on my kitchen table.

  25. The bleeding heart is beautiful! I saw ONE at Lowe's last weekend, in full bloom. I was on a strict mission and didn't buy it, but now I'm wishing I had! It seemed like a strange thing to have at Lowe's!!

  26. This time of spring will come to my garden. I love bleeding hearts an spanish blue bells - these plants we have in common in our gardens.
    Thsnk you for visiting my blog and taking your time to leave a comment.

  27. I love Bleeding Heart but not so sure about Spanish Bluebells. I was given free bulbs many years ago when ordering other plants and they are spread and multipied around the garden the green takes up a lot of room in a small border after flowering. Also In UK they are spreading into woodland and posing a threat to our native daintier bluebells.

  28. Susie - Thanks, I wish you lived close enough so I could bring one to you :)

    Ginger - Maybe they'll get more. I actually saw them at Home Depot a few days ago. It seems like they're beginning to get more perennials there.

    Ewa - It's really interesting to see what grows in other parts of the world. I enjoy your blog!

    Joanne - Anna (greentapestry) mentioned the same thing. Here, at least in my garden, they don't spread fast at all. I'd love to see a picture of the English bluebells sometime.

  29. I love bleeding hearts, too. My pink one did not come up this year, so I bought one to replace it, but it's been raining, so I haven't planted it yet.

    Your bouquet is pretty. That's the kind I do when I remember to bring flowers in.

  30. I love Bleeding Hearts! They're like love notes by Mother Nature! :)


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