Spring Blooming Bulbs Need Fall Planting

  • Post published:September 15, 2018

There is a world of spring blooming bulbs to plant in the fall. Daffodils immediately come to mind, but we don’t often think about the various forms and colors these flowers take. Think of the choices; you can plant large cup daffs in pale shades of lemon or pure white, but with frilled cups in shades of pink or orange. Precocious a particularly showy daffodil with icy white petals and a coral pink and very curly flat cup…

True Lilies, Martagon Lilies and How to Plant

  • Post published:April 7, 2018

Lilies. There are all kinds of lilies: Lily of the valley, daylilies, water lilies, and sword lilies, but these are all fakes. True lilies belong to the very large Lilium family which includes more than 100 species. That means there are many colors, sizes and forms to consider for your garden. Right now the florists and supermarkets are offering potted Easter lilies, but these cannot be planted in our gardens because they are too tender. However, among those…

Forcing Spring Bulbs

  • Post published:October 14, 2016

  Are you thinking about forcing spring bulbs? Most of us will never have a March forced bulb display the way Smith and Mount Holyoke colleges do, but visits to these heartening spring flower shows do make the point that we can create an early spring in our own houses. October is the month to prepare to force our favorite bulbs, daffodils, hyacinths, grape hyacinths, scillas, and amaryllis. The theory behind bulb forcing is that we have to…

Spring is Crocus Season

  • Post published:March 17, 2016

These crocus were just beginning to bloom when my husband and I were visiting our across-the-street neighbors. This is our neighbors first spring in the house and the patch of crocus was a lovely spring surprise. I think these crocus are tommasinianus, fondly known as 'tommies.' They are known for spreading generously because they propagate by seed and offset. These purple crocus are growing in  the garden of my down-the-street neighbor. She has quite a stand. Both neighborns…

Smith College Bulb Show

  • Post published:March 10, 2016

The theme of this year's Smith College  Bulb Show is The Evil Garden of Edward Gorey. There is more black and white in this show than usual, but the tongue-in-cheek tableaux next to various Gorey drawings, a dark but humorous look  at the garden. The photo above is a reference to a Gorey drawing Great Uncle Franz being strangled by a snake. But I ask you - how evil could any garden be  with all that fragrant pink?…

Scent of Spring at Mt Holyoke College Flower Show

  • Post published:March 8, 2016

The Mt Holyoke College Flower Show, with its theme The Emerald Isle includes the fragrant spring flowers that we can enjoy in our own New England spring. The fresh fragrance that meets you as you enter the Flower Show greenhouse is the perfume of spring.  I wonder why more of us, including me, don't think how easy it would be to enjoy that scent in our own houses. A few pots of hyacinths, and may a couple of…

Summer Blooming Bulbs and Tubers

  • Post published:February 13, 2016

I missed my chance to plant spring blooming bulbs in the fall, but I am ready for those summer blooming bulbs. Last spring my husband and I travelled down to Texas to be present when our grandson Anthony was presented with his Boy Scout Eagle Award. There was an impressive ceremony and we were so proud of this whole Eagle family who had jointly done so much for the community. Besides our family celebration, daughter Kate and I…

Little Bulbs – Early Spring Bloomers

  • Post published:April 7, 2015

The Little Bubs are the earliest to bloom.  This collection is crocus and Glory-of-the-Snow, otherwise know as Chionodoxa will be blooming on the Bridge of Flowers any minute.  I have Glory-of-the-Snow down by the vegetable garden, still covered by snow. Crocus and Chionodoxa  and deer and rodent resistant, and both will increase over time. Most of my snowdrops are also still under the snow, but temperatures got to 50 degrees today, so I think they will emerge from…

Smith College Bulb Show a la Giverny

  • Post published:March 10, 2015

The theme of  the Smith College Bulb Show is Giverny, Monet's famous French garden. Today I was satisfied to be  in the Lyman Plant House in Northampton and dream of Giverny. A better close up of Giverny colors. A different view of Room One. An overview of Room Two.  Note the water lily pillars and backdrops.  The scent of spring in every room.   The Smith College Bulb Show at Lyman Plant House will continue daily, from 10-…

Shades of White for Winter, Spring and Summer

  • Post published:March 4, 2015

There are many shades of white in this world. Snow white is what I have been looking at for three frigid months now, but I dream of shades of white for spring and summer. First come the snowdrops - as white as snow. A very welcome white. Rhododendrons bloom towards the end of May, but 'Boule de Neige'  (Snowball) has a memory of the white winter. Somehow this pristine white seems prettier than the snow. High summer and…