What do you see on your garden walks? 2013

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Anne Spiegel
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-01-26

Tim, the sax. in the crevices was beautiful.  Any idea which one it is?  Not that that will make any difference here - they seem to hate drought plus wind.
If you can't water them, they're very quickly gone.

Peden
Title: Guest
Joined: 2012-01-04

Spiegel wrote:

they seem to hate drought plus wind.
If you can't water them, they're very quickly gone.

Anne, how did you make out with Saxifraga cotyledon I gave you years back and suggested you might try it in your new woodland/brook area by road in well rotted wood chips? these things are tough as nails. I just snapped this photo of a trough, among the most neglected on the property, where S. cotyledon (hyb?) seeded itself years ago. The trough is right at the west wall of my house so it does not get sun all day. I watch this thing turn yellow in the heat of August thinking it will dry up and die. It doesn't! Two more toughies here: Arabis bryoides and Sedum aizoon(?). The Potentilla nitida did finally throw in the towel last summer, which was very hot and dry. There's also a second seedling Sax.

Michael Peden
Lake Champlain Valley, zone 4b
Four and a half months frost free
Snow cover not guaranteed

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

Each brief, hopeful period of melting has been followed by another snowfall here... another 20cm is forecast for today, phooey!  
Bulbocodium vernum is looking bedraggled from all the repeated snows and melts.   There have been a few scattered crocus, scilla and puschkinia in bloom over the last 3 weeks... at least that's some encouragement!  
Puschkinia; Corydalis nobilis; pretty rosettes of Townsendia parryi (the colour difference between these seed-grown plants is interesting);  buds on a saxifrage planted last year:
     

This early-bird Pulsatilla vulgaris has been in stasis the last week... I'm sure it would open if the sun would just come out!

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

cohan
cohan's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-02-03

Far ahead of here, Lori! I've realised, though, that all of my spring flowers so far are in rather slow, or at best, medium-late to melt parts of the property-- I'm giving a lot of thought to those south/west edges of spruce trees/woods through the property, which are free of snow many weeks before the middle, and weeks more before the shady places.. Of course early exposure means much more exposure to cold, but worth experimenting.. I did notice some bulbs poking up today- crocus or snowdrop- they seem very pale, so I think they may have actually started before the snow was gone over them! Meltwater from the rock garden above must have thawed the ground.... And I think I see signs of growth on a couple of Polemonium boreale in various beds- not sure if they will be ready to flower this year...
It's been snowing here all day, but just starting to accumulate, as it was melting on the ground (except on the still significant white areas!)
They've reduced our forecast now- to 5-10cm today and flurries for the next 3 days (was for up to 25cm by tomorrow..)...

west central alberta, canada; just under 1000m; record temps:min -45C/-49F;max 34C/93F; http://picasaweb.google.ca/cactuscactus  http://urbanehillbillycanada.blogspot.com/

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

And ahead of me in Minnesota, too.  Only some Corydalis solida, a few snowdrops and Hellebores peaking, and of course they're all under snow again now.  Though everything is late by the calendar, things actually seem to be emerging earlier than normal here according to temperature.  (We are consistently running 15-20F below normal.)  Usually nothing happens until all traces of snow disappear because the soil freezes so deeply. But the ground has already thawed, and I actually have snowdrops emerging while there is still lingering aged winter snow.

Those Townsedia parryi are wonderful, Lori!

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Zonedenial
Zonedenial's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2012-04-11

Every year I buy one plant that shouldn't survive in the open here in Iowa; as a result I have a secret cigar box containing labels I no longer need, but also have some pretty odd plants growing in my garden. Maybe my biggest surprise is the return this spring of last year's flyer: Scoliopus bigelovii, endemic to wet spots in coastal California. I lived for a number of years in Berkeley and San Francisco, and hiked a lot in Marin County, where there are a number of colonies. I have it growing in peaty soil in a large tub with some drain holes drilled in the bottom. It was up this spring while there was still some patchy snow on the ground, and it smells like a dead mouse that had rolled in orange zest. There are always a few gnats flying around it. It's pretty (very) iffy for this climate (especially our hot summers), so I'm calling it a guest for now.

Don Bolin  Zone 5a in eastern Iowa, USA (corn country).

Hoy
Hoy's picture
Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15

I grow Scoliopus too and they like the climate here but slugs like the plants so it isn't that easy to grow them. I am anxious now with the weather we have had this winter though. With no snow and a lot of frost and sun all my hellebores are completely dead above ground. The ground is still frozen solid in many places and even the toughest plants struggle. The snowdrops have mostly been fine (they're over the peak now) and the crocuses are in flower with much smaller flowers than usual and almost no leaf out. Iris 'Katharine Hodkin' opened yesterday on the ground with no leaves at all - very pretty and probably more "natural" but very unusual here.

Trond
Rogaland, Norway - with cool, often rainy summers  (29C max) and mild, often rainy winters (180 cm/year)!

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

It's great to hear that Scoliopus is hardier than one might expect, Don.  It's a very intriguing plant and one I'd certainly give a try to (despite the odds against) if I ever come across it.

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

cohan
cohan's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-02-03

Scoliopus is one I'm interested in too, so we're rooting for you!

Some overviews of my rock gardens today- some of them were free of snow recently before a couple of new snows, other parts had not yet fully melted out.
Several of these were just built last year, so not many plants, or only very small ones.
I've put them in a couple of distinct parts of the property- dry and wetter especially- to hopefully suit different groups of plants.. album here:
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151562468549015.1073741827.5...
I'll just select a few shots for here..

1- part of the 'Rockies' new 'dry' beds- sharply sloped and in the dry end of the yard; berm at the back (left) for non-rock plants and to help shelter from the north.. this area was mostly bare some time ago, except for some of the lowest areas. excavated between beds to hold water temporarily as a reservoir.
Interesting: Polemonium boreale planted on a high dry spot emerged green weeks ago, then old leaves all yellowed, seems to have new growth in core, last I looked; same species on beds in front of house, which did not melt as soon and so missed the coldest nights, have remained mostly green since emerging from snow.
2- in the front of the high beds are lower but gravelly 'foothills' and dryland beds
3- view of 'Alp 1' semp etc bed in front of house planted year before last; this bed was bare before
4-Jovibarba allioni in Alp 1
5-Waldheimia tomentosa in Alp 1- doesn't look like much now, but seems to have lots of live growing points..
6-Townsendia parryi in Alp 1; this one was just flowering in mid/late October when the snow came; not sure if that means it will die now?

west central alberta, canada; just under 1000m; record temps:min -45C/-49F;max 34C/93F; http://picasaweb.google.ca/cactuscactus  http://urbanehillbillycanada.blogspot.com/

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

Looks good, Cohan.  The rounded "river rock" gives a different sort of character; looks very much like glacial washout - I like it!  Looking forward to seeing it again when more is visible.

cohan wrote:

6-Townsendia parryi in Alp 1; this one was just flowering in mid/late October when the snow came; not sure if that means it will die now?

Townsendia parryi has been perennial for me (which is good!) so I assume the same for your plant.

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

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