It’s April and the garden is starting to come to life. I love this time of year as hope springs from the soil and makes us feel like we have a fresh start. With all we’ve been through the last two years we need some hope for a fun year ahead. With that said lots has changed here over the last couple of years. Like many others we’ve spent time building, planting and designing new gardens. I want to say we are done but a garden is never done. As Farmer Jim said the other day the garden is now ours, not the former owners. He’s right as the old hoop house frame with climbing roses is gone. A farmer in the valley took it away for us. New pergolas were built and the roses changed to hybrid tea that can be easily maintained. We aren’t getting any younger and ladders are out of the question.
April brings us a continuous display of spring bulbs. Last fall I planted 750 new bulbs! Seventy five of them were eaten or dislodged by squirrels so that’s disheartening but they didn’t take the tulips. The tulips should put on a pretty show towards mid April. I love that I can start creating bouquets from the garden. This month Narcissus Passionale is in full bloom in the new rose garden. It’s quite unique with its double blooms and yellow markings on the underside of the petals. Have you ever had random bulbs appear? I have two groupings of Hyacinths that I didn’t buy. I guess they could have been packed by mistake in my order.
Rhododendrons have just started to open their blooms. With forty Rhododendrons in the garden they bloom from early March to late May, each one taking its turn. The biggest flush of colour will be in late April. Two of our Rhododendrons suffered some heat damage from last summers heat dome. They’ve come through a cold winter but have buds so they’ll probably be okay. The thought of losing a thirty year old rhododendron is not something I want to think about.
Shrubs that were planted last spring are doing well now that they are established. Along with five new roses we also planted an elderberry, nine bark and edgeworthia. The foliage of the elderberry and the nine bark will carry the purple colour throughout the garden blending with the numerous Heuchera, Clematis and Cotinus already planted. Continuing certain colours throughout the garden is good garden design.
This summer we are growing flowers for a friends wedding. Her colours are white, light pink and purple. The greenhouse is full of flowers I’ve grown from seed waiting to be planted in early May. Six raised beds that are normally used to grow vegetables will be cut flowers this year. Our vegetables will grow in containers on the patio.
While we wait for warmer temperatures we will touch up the birdbath with new paint and restain the benches in the garden. Periwinkle is the colour of the year so I guess we’ve been a few years ahead as much of our decor is already that colour. I’m filling up hanging baskets and containers with soil in preparation for planting. Flower netting and supports need to be installed and clematis tied in place. There is always something to do in the garden and I love it that way.