May 13, 2020

Early May

The tulips are finishing up and the Royal Raindrops crabapple trees have passed their peak.  Although I've been enjoying the cheerful yellow of the cushion spurge (Euphorbia polychroma), looking at this photo makes me wonder if they don't look out of place with the other colors.  Perhaps I could transplant the spurge elsewhere.

We've been picking thousands of baby crabapple seedlings.  They just keep coming.

I sure love the pink flowers, though, and the birds love the tiny crabapples.  This spring we've had more songbirds in the backyard than ever before.  We've delighted in the robins and several types of finches.  Pine siskin finches built a nest in the dead honeysuckle twigs on the swing set, but we saw one of the parents get eaten by a hawk.  Peeking into the nest revealed a lone egg which might never hatch.  So sad.

Some of the poppies and peonies have fat buds that will open soon, depending on the temperatures.  Highs in the 60's and rain are showing in the forecast for the next week.

The last of the tulips are blooming in shades of purple and deep pink as the Purple Sensation alliums begin to open.  Lily flowered Merlot has remained in bloom for a long time.

A pair of windstorms knocked the heads off seven or eight of the Blue Spectacle tulips, but the ones that survived are looking gorgeous with Merlot.

Black Hero and Menton Exotic join Merlot, Blue Spectacle and Margarita in this shot.

This view looks different from last year since my husband graciously dug out one of the giant Katherine Havemeyer lilacs.  It was quickly replaced other shrubs from overcrowded positions.  Although I love lilacs, my six KH lilacs send out endless suckers up to ten feet away from the original shrubs.  They require a lot of pruning to remove dead wood, and their form is messy.  The two weeks while they're in bloom is glorious, but I'm happy to have more room for other plants in my small garden. 

The slightly crooked broken fountain is planted with Pacific Ice sempervivum (hens and chicks) this year.  It's been difficult to keep other plants watered in its shallow bowl during the past few summers, so I'm hoping the hens and chicks will require less supplemental watering.

Although shrubs and perennials are still in the process of leafing out for spring, there's a lot more green in this shot than there was a few weeks ago. 
I've been dreaming up new projects and figuring out how to squeeze more plants, especially new evergreen shrubs, into the landscape.  But projects will have to wait as I gave myself tendinitis in my hand after pruning too much.  Gardening teaches patience in many ways, eh?

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