May 17, 2010

Still Celebrating Spring

When I read other bloggers writing about their roses blooming, I think they must be having summer already. Roses are a summer flower, aren't they? Anyway, we're still celebrating spring around here.

The transplanted dark pink dogwood is blooming. I am so in love with this tree! An especially cold night made the flower color more vivid than usual. I'm still nervous about how it will do when the weather gets hot. Hopefully it will settle into its new spot and regrow roots quickly.

The clearance rack 'Katherine Havemeyer' lilacs are blooming for the first time. Unfortunately some of them are losing leaves and shoots to bacterial blight, but I think they'll outgrow the problem. I'm going to pull out more of the lawn that currently surrounds them to give their roots more room. I'll also make sure they get watered deeply and fed with low-nitrogen fertilizer this season, and that should help them withstand disease better in the future.

The white dogwood is also blooming, with lavender vinca flowers underneath. Sweetness! Soon the 'Stellar Pink' dogwood will join the show.

All my ferns are unraveling their new leaves. They're so interesting to me, even without any flowers. Did I mention how much fun I'm having with my new camera lens that goes down to a 2.8 f-stop? It creates some great blurry backgrounds to make the focal point pop.

Here at 2.8, the lens makes the bark in the background look like it's painted in an impressionist style. The sea pink (Armeria maritima) in the foreground is so pretty. Many plants have buds ready to pop open, and many of them are blooming for the first time in my garden. So I can wait a month or more for the roses, and continue to enjoy spring for a while.


  1. I have never seen a dogwood that color before; it's almost red. Beautiful! -Jean

  2. Very pretty post! It does feel like summer here in Austin. We have been up in the 90's. I love that fern photo!

  3. Ferns are terrific for macro shots. The newly emerging fiddleheads look so alien, with those tightly curled green tips.

  4. Hi VW~~ No 'Berry Smoothie' yet? I'm pulling for you. Big Dipper Nursery [online catalog] has similar colored Heucheras but I didn't see the one you're wanting.

    Your fern photo is blue ribbon worthy. Seriously. I love the blurred greens juxtaposing the crystal-clear circular unfolding fronds. Just fabulous!

    I think of roses as summer flowers too which adds to my dismay about so many of mine blooming already. I think those 70 degree days provided a serious push towards summer which, of course, didn't last. With the recent rains, everything is weighed down and in need of staking. Always something!

    Your Dogwoods and Lilacs, as I'm sure you know, require really good soil drainage. This will be a big factor in keeping the diseases at bay.

  5. What a vivid and bright Flowering Dogwood! Never seen one that red. Yes, here in Zone 7a/b Washington D.C. area our "Spring" ends all too briefly, the tulips and dogwoods are done. But for some reason, my roses are not blooming yet. Anyway, savor spring, as summer will be here for everybody all too soon.

  6. Great photos, VW. I'm one of the people whose roses are blooming - in fact, my climbers will be done and resting in another two weeks.

    I learned about going to a 2.8 f-stop when I took my film workshop (the cool film lingo term is stopping down) but I'm going to have to upgrade my camera before I can get to your quality of photos.

  7. My roses are blooming, too. I would say that spring is over in the Middle South, but I am loving seeing it again in your post~Wonderful images and thanks for the reminder to feed the lilac. gail

  8. I'm new to visiting your blog. and I love your photography!!!! You make your plants pop off the page. Your garden design is awesome and I too am a big ROCK lover. I look forward to reading more and thanks for sharing from one garderner to another.....

  9. Hi VW,

    Wonderful photos, I love the Dogwood, and someday hope to have Lilacs too, they're stunning!

    I think of Roses as a Summer bloom too... So I was shocked to see some in flower in a garden a few houses away way back in April!

    I was tempted to ask the owner what just how she'd managed that one...

  10. You're taking really good photos VW.

    I'm also really taken with ferns at this time of year.

    I've a row of Sea Pinks planted under roses. They've really bulked out and are blooming well this year.

  11. Such a feast for the eyes! Spring is lovely for you.

  12. Great photos and beautiful spring flowers. Yes, the temp is already 76F and it's morning. I believe we've moved into summer today.~~Dee

  13. VW girl ! .. When I say this , I am NOT kidding .. my heart jumped when I saw that pink dogwood (and the white as well) .. I had them so close as the replacement tree where Ms. Flame Amur maple is ..I really loved the pink flowered variety so much .. but the spot is full sun all day and our winters had it right on the zone line .. so the fear of loving it and losing it was too great to chance for me. So .. I will have to admire yours and pretend it is mine ? LOL
    Ferns .. yes I am a total fan of them and couldn't care less about the flowerless state ? of them and many of my plants are likewise : )
    I have been too chicken to play with the settings on my camera .. so again .. I'll watch what you do ! LOL

  14. A great picture of the fern. It's still spring here as well but normal years we have summer by now / gittan

  15. Yes, your garden looks like spring to me! What gorgeous colors!

    Sorry that I'm late here. I'm trying to catch up on the blogland from the past few weeks while I was away.

  16. Hi VW, I am in awe at the way your camera skills have come on. I'm still slogging away, still a bit overwhelmed by things like f stops. love all the photos in your post, especially the dogwoods. I have a deciduous dogwood which has just dropped its yellow leaves for the start of winter. I agree - leaves and structure are even more important than transient flowers. cheers, catmint

  17. The pink dogwood is stunning. I have never seen such pretty colors before.
    What a beautiful site you have.


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