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"Purple Prince' tulips open“Hurray, hurray; the first of May!”

It was a glorious beginning for the month here in Northeast Pennsylvania, sunny and comfortably warm, with a gentle breeze–very hard not to wax ecstatic on rare days such as these!  The outdoor gardening season is well and truly underway, with flowers blooming, others poised to bloom, new shoots of summer perennials just pushing through the soil, and, of course, plenty of work  to do!  Before I retire on this beautiful May Day, I’d like to share with you some of the blooms I’ve been enjoying.

Here is Tulipa ‘Purple Prince’, a Triumph tulip, planted in the relative safety of the fenced-in vegetable garden.  Tulip 'Purple Prince'Narcissus ‘Fortissimo’ continues to grace the rock garden.  One of its flowers is six inches wide!  Oh, I think I need more of these!  Narcissus 'Fortissimo'131‘King Alfred’ reigns in the patch around the Rose of Sharon at the corner of the front porch, as well as around the kids’ tree house in the back yard.Rose of Sharon corner--'King Alfred' daffodilsdaffodils around treehouseOn the hillside of my backyard, Muscari ‘Ocean Magic’ have just opened.  Muscari 'Ocean Magic'
Ocean magic muscari on hillsideWhile I think they are quite lovely, I am also disappointed that they are not bright enough to show up well, especially at a distance, against the drab landscape.  Hopefully as they naturalize and multiply, they will form larger masses that will have a greater impact on the eye.

Bearing testimony to their tendency to naturalize, here are some descendants of grape hyacinths that were already here when we moved into this house nearly ten years ago.  We have done nothing to keep them going, but some still show up in the lawn every year.  grape hyacinths in grassHere are some rogue daffodils.  I am lucky enough to live next to an undeveloped acre of woodland, where I generally toss my weeds and other plant trimmings not suitable for compost.  It seems that last fall when I separated some daffodil bulbs, I must have tossed some of the unwanted ones over here, at the edge of the woods, and along the side of the road.  If you look carefully, you’ll even see an iris growing back behind the single daffodil!  Narcissi near woodsdaff and iris near roadsideThough I vowed to exercise restraint when it came to pansies this year, I could not help myself the other day when I visited a local nursery with my twelve year old daughter.  Just one, “Oh, Mom, they’re so ADORABLE!,”  fell from her lips, and I found myself filling a flat with happy faced pansies and truly adorable violas.  It was worth every penny to then spend a pleasant afternoon with her filling several containers with cheerful color for our porches.023How can anyone resist?  I was powerless!024027As I’ve often mentioned, I strategically place flowers for view from my kitchen window.  Seeing these perky blossoms makes dish washing somewhat less tedious!039I end not with a flower, but rather a vegetable that most people consider a fruit; namely, rhubarb.  I was happy to discover this afternoon that there are several stalks here ready to harvest and enjoy.  Rhubarb fool for dessert tomorrow night!

rhubarbBe sure to come back tomorrow to see May’s coming attractions!  Here’s a teaser!Alyssum 'Basket of Gold' budded

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