Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Wildflower Wedensday - Trillium

It is that time of year again when the wildflowers begin to abound. As I step out into my favorite woods the trails become alive with blooming wildflowers. While the Spring Beauties and Dutchman's Breeches meld together to give this look of a wildflower carpet it is fun to go along to find what else might be up and about.
 Here I have found the Toadshade Trillium blooming. I dashed home to see if any trillium was blooming in my garden. Sure enough...

I have a trillium blooming too. While it is similar to the Toadshade it is a different variety. It is Prairie Trillium. How do you tell the difference you ask?? Well the sepals on the Prairie Trillium are on the under side of the leaves. If you look at the Toadshade picture above you can see the sepals on top of the leaves.
If you have a shady spot in your garden either of these trilliums are great to have. They are in the lily family. Such reliable early bloomers once you get them established.
For more wildflower viewing and inspiration to incorporate wildflowers in your garden head over to Gail's blog Clay and Limestone.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Introductions Needed

I want to introduce you to my latest gardening companion... We have named it Stripey since we don't know if it is a him or a her.  Stripey seems to be about 20" long.
Stripy has a penchant for earth worms. 
The other evening I was watching Stripey rooting through the mulch. I could tell he was hungry. So I dug up some earth worms to feed to him.
Yumm yummm. He was quite happy to have them. After he ate 4 earthworms, 
he looked at me as if to say, OK what is for dessert. 
I have read that Eastern Garter snakes eat mostly earth worms, toads and frogs. I had one of these snakes in the garden last year and had hardly no slug damage or snail damage on my hostas. I think they must eat these too.  In the photo below you can see him staring at an empty snail shell. He could have been sitting still so I wouldn't see him. Clever fellow (fellowette).
Have you had any wildlife in your garden lately?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Garden Blogger's Bloom Day - Late March 2012

Garden Blogger's Bloom Day completely got away from me this month. We have been having record heat as has most of the areas near here. This has caused me to be outside more than usual. By the time I come inside I am worn to a frazzle. I haven't been able to work up a post.  Most things here are ahead of schedule as far a blooms are concerned.
Please follow me down the path around back of the house and I will show you what all is going on. Don't you feel royal walking this path?  It is as if someone has strewn the path with petals so your shoes won't get muddy. Don't worry about getting muddy shoes though. We haven't had enough rain to mix up any mud.
Peek over the fence here and you can see the forsythia blooming. I must say that the Magnolia tree has been outstanding this year. If it hadn't been so hot it would have lasted longer. The poor hyacinths and daffodils aren't liking this 80degree heat either.
Luna likes to lead people around. I hope you don't mind. You can see that the anemones are blooming at the feet of Red Lady Hellebores. 
The Almond Bush that I thought had died is blooming beautifully.
Bloodroot is looking gorgeous. 
The bees are out in numbers. I saw bumble bees and wasps today too.
All sorts of bugs are coming alive. Like these tiny things on the white tulips.

I hope you were able to get out in the garden this weekend to enjoy nature and keep up with spring as it is full steam ahead.
Other flowers in the garden now: Service Berry Tree, Redbud Tree, Daffodils, Narcissus, Leather leaf viburnum, Pussywillow, Kerria Shrub, Grape hyacinths, Orange Hyacinths, Ajuga, Periwinkle Hellebores, Dandelion, Barrenwort Epimedium 'Fairy wings', Spring Beauties, Lungwort, Short Pink tulips, Creeping phlox, chinonodoxa.

P.S. We have been out of the garden a lot lately too. My DB took the picture of a male Falcate Orangetip Butterfly today. A very early arrival. This is the butterfly on my hearder. We were at a Fish and Wildlife area a county East of where we live.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Spring Snow

                                       We went from this yesterday, a perfect early spring day,
to this, a perfect early spring day.
It seems that every March we have snow. So despite it being warmer than ever this winter we have had our largest snowfall this year, such as it is, this spring.
I am sure those of you up North are laughing your wool socks off at this piddling of snow but I am glad to see it.
I thought we were  going to get through a winter with just a heavy dusting of frost. How could I say we had winter without snow? 
I can now  say we have had winter.
So let the growing season begin.
Have you had snow this winter or has your winter been as mild as ours?
I hope your area wasn't one of those hit by the tornadoes and severe winds. My thoughts and prayers goes out to all who has to deal with the devastation.
P.S.
My DB took this picture out his window this morning. You can see that Mrs Robin doesn't especially like this weather. You can also see that the sun is out and it will melt the snow so that Mrs Robin can go on hunting worms and getting on with territorial chores.