March 29, 2012

Crocus 2012

The crocus (crocuses, croci?) are all blooming their heads off right now. Last year the blooms were more sequential, but this year they've all come up together. These first photos show 'Golden Bunch', which is the first to bloom.

I don't do a whole lot of yellow in my garden, but after a long winter this cheerful color is fabulous. This winter seemed especially long as I worked through several of health problems. After a couple of months of being stuck on the couch, it feels absolutely glorious to be able to move around.

These next photos show Crocus tommasinianus 'Barr's Purple'. Tommies, as these crocus are affectionately known, are supposed to be good naturalizers. They've definitely lived up to that reputation in my garden. Each clump has nearly twice as many flowers as last year, it seems.

My crocus population should explode in a couple of years when the seeds that were produced last year reach flowering size. I really need to go out in June and take pictures of the seed heads if they form again. I had never heard of crocus forming seeds - usually one hears about them multiplying by corm, underground. But last year these white 'buds' came up from the clumps in June and turned out to be filled with little, round, brown seeds.

I'm not sure if seeds form every year or only when a long, cool spring allows the leaves to persist for a long time and produce enough energy for seed-making before frying in summer's heat. Does anyone have experience with this?

These last photos show Crocus 'Grand Maitre', which has larger flowers and blooms later than the other two types.

Some of the hellebores are blooming now, and I just confirmed today that all of them have at least a few buds growing so none were lost to the winter. A few miniature daffodils ('Tete a Tete') were blooming yesterday, and my daughters each cut a stem to bring inside and put in a tiny vase. Sweet.

There is a ton of work to be done in the garden, and my energy level isn't back to normal. Thank goodness next week is spring break, when I can pay my son the princely sum of $2/hour to clean out the beds that are still full of last year's dead material. Hubby also volunteered to help, thank you dear. We'll get it done somehow.


  1. Very pretty. This weather has us rushing out doing a lot we normally wouldn't do this early. I have already mowed 3 times. Can I hire your son? LOL
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  2. Hi VW,

    Sorry to hear you haven't been too well; I hope you're well on your way to feeling better now and can get out in the garden soon :)

    I also love the tommies; they only look good in clumps and since they're such good naturalisers anyone who plants any will soon have groups of them :)
    They're the most beautiful purple, ever and I need more in my garden!

  3. At 9, my son isn't quite old enough to mow, but he's very helpful in other ways. His young back doesn't get sore after leaning over for hours to grub out garden beds. I just realized how great it is that the baby is also a boy, 9 years younger. Son #2 will be old enough to be helpful just about the time that son #1 takes off for college. How brilliant of me to space my boys out like that, LOL!

  4. I can't imagine how frustrating it is to be down as long as you have been. Glad you are starting to feel better.
    I have little experience with crocus, though I did order a bunch as an early order option. I have ONE crocus, its foliage came up but no flower. I am not sure if it was because of the mild winter we had??

  5. I don't remember volunteering to work in the garden. -husband.

  6. I guess I know what I'm doing this weekend-- same husband.

  7. haha - funny how your husband found out his chores! :) Your crocus are beautiful. I've never seen any with seeds. But I never noticed any bees on mine. I wonder if that makes a difference. Glad you're starting to feel better. I hope you soon recover fully.

  8. I love the yellow crocus. How cheery they are to look at.

  9. Dearest, don't you remember that conversation when you offered to prune my roses and cut back other plants if needed? Or was that one of those times when I only thought you were listening and you'd already nodded off to sleep? Besides, if this rain keeps up then none of us will be out in the garden this weekend.

  10. VW girl you have made me laugh !
    Now I will always think of soda coming out of your nose when I am "talking" to you ! Naughty woman ! How am I to carry on a conversation let alone keep from inhaling my soda the wrong way too ? LOL ... worse has happened to me though so we won't go there right ? wink wink
    I see exactly what you are talking about with background blurring and it is very pretty ! I will definitely be trying some of that out too .. I am nervous about how to handle it all .. I haven't tried the telephoto lens yet .. I thought I should get used to this first lens and move slowly (so I don't trip in the garden ? LOL)
    It is still cold here .. a threat of flurries .. so winter is not done with us yet .. but that gives me time to cram the manual in my head as much as possible .. with a bit of leakage out my ears no doubt!
    I hope you feel more yourself soon .. I understand how it feels to be knocked back health wise .. that is so cute of your little one working for his mom on salary .. did you promise your husband the same rate of pay too ? LOL
    My hubby is very helpful in the garden for me .. but you might hear the commotion the day son and husband try to put that arbour bench together for my roses to climb on .. I might have to leave the house the day they do that ? LOL
    Rest up and feel much better soon !
    Keep the soda out of your nose girl !

  11. Lucky you to be able to grow them so well. Thank you for the eye candy, I am glad I can enjoy them through your blog...

  12. I call them "crokies" and I call plural Clematis "clemmies." Call me weird. :) I hope you were able to get a lot done in the garden. If not, well you're not alone. My garden looks terrible but I keep telling myself, "better weather is coming." Cheers.

  13. Beautiful! Your crocus images glow in the sunlight! I like the comment conversation you are having with your hubby. My husband has the same sort of faulty memory!


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