Persephone approaches and colour springs under her feet

As the evenings lengthen and the weather gets a fraction warmer, the flowers are beginning to emerge in the garden.  We have been working on clearing the old leaves and stalks of last year’s plants, and shaping up the acers – I have been taking off the lower branches to bring the leaves more towards the ends of the branches – moving towards cloud-pruning of those that can be shaped that way – obviously not the low ground hugging ones but the higher and more spreading ones – also taking out the core of the plant to open it up to light.

Now that the ground is cleared we can also where holes might be – but remembering what has still to emerge at the same time, and where plants might need moving. We have moved a phormium and it has replaced a non-flowering small green shrub. It looks much better and will have space to expand even more. This has left a space on the edge of the plot where it grew, but there are plants growing in the greenhouse which might fill in – we shall see. We are also very pleased to see that 2 of the 3 restios have made it through the winter so far and are growing well.  One died last year but we did hope it might come back so didn’t remove the roots. Last chance this Spring!

It is now only 30 days to Easter – well Good Friday – and on March 31st the Spring officially starts. of course Spring is, in Greek mythology, Persephone  who was given the title of  Kore (the Maiden) as the goddess of spring’s bounty. Where she walked flowers sprung up on the grassy meadows and in our garden so much has started to spring up that I thought I’d take some photos in the mild sunshine today, of the bulbs that were coming up, mostly in the front, but also some of the flowers in the back garden, and share them with you. To help you see a little of what has been encouraging me here are some photos below.

We planted several hundred bulbs of different types in the front and last year I mixed some cyclamen with some crocus under our blue fir and now they are mixing and setting each other off. This is their first year of sharing space and this crocus seeds freely, so I am expecting yet more next year.

cyclamen with crocus tommasiniamus

cyclamen with crocus tommasiniamus

I also have a number of different hellebores out in both gardens. They are a different shades and shapes and sizes of flowers, and some, hellebores being rather promiscuous, have made their own colours up…

Also in flower are, of course, the very earliest of the pulmonaria – aka lungworts because their spotted leaves were thought to look a little like the inside of lungs by early healers. these support our early bees – especially the solitary bees with long proboscis and the queen bumbles coming out to feed again.

Of course the winter clematis are still in flower so here they are again – Wisley Cream; Freckles; and the two crimson versions of Freckles.  The bright lemon of the primroses always cheers and the blues of the irises contrasts well.

Finally, two indoor plants – my mother Clivia – flowering in the kitchen with her uplifting orange, and my new purchase of a three-stemmed striped amaryllis. Three flowering stems! H

Clivia, Amaryllis, Iris and Primroses

Clivia, Amaryllis, Iris and Primroses

20130228_155132 20130228_155145 20130228_155207 20130228_155633ow wonderful.

winter flowering clematis

winter flowering clematis

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Pulmonaria - and some potted primroses

Pulmonaria – and some potted primroses



A quartet of hellebores

A quartet of hellebores

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