Along with them come the chiondoxa and the crocuses. I really like these two crocus bunches (intermixed purple and white) planted in the grass, cheerfully welcoming people to the path leading to my door. I saw little girls squeal over them as they walked by. "Daddy! Flowers!" I'm glad they got to enjoy them before the squirrels and bunnies bit all their heads off. Apparently, crocuses are delicious.
These striped crocuses, planted between two stepping stones, were utterly charming at first, but swiftly trampled by little feet. Not the wisest placement, I fear. I'm going to try thyme there instead for next year. Possibly mixed with chamomile.
Not long after, the viburnum started to bloom...
And then, well, everything kind of exploded.
I adore the white Thalia daffodils flanking the winding path -- I'm planning to add four more bunches for next year. (Follow the link for a ton of literary symbolism and history. :-) They're smaller than regular daffodils, the oldest garden form of the wild N. triandrus, and supposedly naturalize easily -- it'd be terrific if they multiplied. We'll see. They offer an abundance of long-lasting flowers in multiples of three, and bloom for up to four weeks -- really welcome, given the short-lived nature of so many spring bulbs. And I particularly love that they date to 1916; just thirty years after my house was built, the owners could have planted Thalia daffodils.
Also in this pic is the viburnum shrub, now in full bloom, and further up, a bunch of tulips, and a cluster of hyacinth. Let's take a closer look.
I believe these are Albert Heijin tulips. Love them -- a deep, rich color, and pleasing upturned bell shape.
Berries and Cream hyacinth mix. (Purchased from Dutch Gardens, but they don't seem to be offering it right now. Maybe in the fall?) We plant a lot of hyacinths here, both regular and grape, after my mother Jacintha (also one of Kavi's middle names). Kavi knows it's her flower, and conveniently, it comes in her favorite colors of pink and purple. What I'll do when she goes Goth, I don't know. Start researching black flowers, I suppose.
Grape hyacinth (aka muscari) in blue and white, along the front stone border and scattered across the lawn, along with checkered fritillary (aka guinea hen) below. (Sorry for the blurry pic!)
I'm aiming towards a cool color scheme, blues and white and pinks and purples. But the previous owners apparently liked yellow and orange and red, and occasionally, their bulbs will pop out. I may move them to the back eventually, but for now, I'm just letting them be happy where they are. It's going to take me years to get the front yard looking as full and bloom-y as I want, so I can't quite bear to denude it of any flowers yet, even if they clash with my color scheme. And I do love the bicolor ruffle on these daffodils.
If you keep walking up the winding path (or the straight one), you come to the front steps, and at the base of them on either side, bloom hellebores. I planted the one at bottom right after we bought the house, back in 2009, and somehow it survived all the construction. I added more this spring, mostly ruffled.
Names to be checked, but I believe these are "Red Lady" and "Ivory Prince." I'd love to add a lot more hellebores, in other parts of the yard -- they bloomed right after the snowdrops, and are still blooming exuberantly now -- wonderful for early spring, and with an old-fashioned feel.
The straight walk is easier for strollers and other wheeled things -- it was Tonya's idea to place a large pot near the top, that I could fill with annuals as desired. Smart! We're aiming towards a mature perennial garden in a few years, so the bulk of the planting should be done by then, but you know I won't be happy if I can't put in a few plants every year. Annuals should help a lot with that desire.
Here's a close-up of the base of the pot (the top has a flowering almond and pansies at the moment, but that will change soon). Two different tulips at two points (purple Passionale (free with my order and nice enough, but not something I'd plant again) and pink Albert Heijin) -- I'd like to add some at the third point. The leftover crocus leaves add some nice thin spiky green; there were a lot of crocuses around that pot a few weeks ago. Lots of perennials are coming back now -- pulmonaria, chocolate ajuga, dead nettle. Some aren't flowering yet, but soon.
I love the color change on the pulmonaria: pink/red/purple. In general, I have a tremendous weakness for color-changing flowers. No idea why.
Just to the right of the front steps (if you're facing them) are the rhododendrons and azalea. My parents had these shrubs too, and while I think they may have taken theirs out, I'm very happy to put them in. They have an almost tropical flair, like smaller versions of hibiscus.
Giant white trumpet daffodils, Mt. Hood, along the front walk:
Further south on the path, flanking tulips, which I think are Ollioules, very serene -- I like them, and would plant again:
Turn towards the street, and you see the Ace of Hearts redbud. It doesn't have the spare redbud shape that seems so iconic, which I'm a little sad about, but I'm hopeful that as time goes on, I can prune it closer to that.
And I do adore the tiny heart-shaped leaves. Even when it's not in bloom, the leaves are pretty enough to justify a few branches as table arrangement -- longer-lasting, too.
It's been an amazing few weeks in the garden -- everything blooming a month early, and looking rather lovely. I'm getting tons of compliments from strangers on the garden, which I am eating up like the cat who ate the cream. But what I really want to say is just wait. Just wait -- in a few years, I'm hoping for AMAZING. :-)