Saturday, February 06, 2010

Spring Blossoms and New Garden Path Lighting

The weather today was beautiful, as was yesterday.  I took the opportunity to do some more garden cleanup, and also snap a few photos of the signs of spring.
It was just exciting to actually see shadows.  But seeing my underplanting of croci and daffs under the persimmon tree was pretty exciting too.
Underplanting of spring bulbsFirst crocus of spring
Snowdrop in February
This primula will soon burst into bloom.
This single yellow crocus seems the only one left behind of the planting I did a few years ago near the gunnera. I like the photo I snapped of this same crocus last year (although the technical quality of the photo was not good).
Single yellow crocus
The daylily "Kwanzo" (a vigorous daylily with triple orange blooms) is sprouting rapidly - every couple of days it is visibly taller.
Daylily Kwanzo
Okay, these don't really count as Spring flowers, but they have survived a few winters now, and do "reappear" in spring, mostly hidden in the growth of summer.
I absolutely love these little decorative frogs I bought in Gastown in Vancouver many many years ago. They have been outdoors year round for some 5 years now, and show no signs of fading or wear. At the time, I could only justify to myself buying 2, but if I ever see them again, I hope to buy even more, and some of the lizards too. If I ever meet the artist, I would like to shake his or her hand, and show him how well these little guys have survived many winters now. By summer, the climbing hydrangea will hide them in its foliage.
Cool decorative frogCool decorative frog
Decorative frogs on retaining wall
Tootsie at Tootsie Time recently hosted a giveaway and promotion for CSN Stores and their Lighting Stores. I stumbled across a Westinghouse low voltage "Bellflower" path light which captured my imagination, and I just had to order 6 of them. They arrived yesterday, and I was really pleased by their look, and the "Antique Brick" colour, which I was unsure of, turned out to be a very pleasant antique dark brown colour, very easily blending into the garden. Although now I wonder if the "Patina Green" colour would have looked more like foliage, and may have also been very attractive.

Anyhow, I assembled one, and then went outside, sticking it into the ground (although I had problem everywhere, that I couldn't budge it beyond the soft soil, into the clay layer), and taking photos. When I returned to the house, my daughter was laughing at me, and said I must have thought it was Hanna Montana, the way I was taking so many photos. Paparrazzi of garden ornaments? Hmmm, I never thought of myself that way.

Anyhow, I was surprised by the size and "presence" of this fixture. I guess once everything has grown up around it, it won't look so noticeable. But at this point in the year, I am able to see it clearly even from the house.
Path light visible even from the house
I decided also to bring a little bit of Spring inside with me, with a cutting from my young forsythia bush (which is only a few branches yet). The cutting also fulfills two other purposes. The original "bush" needed to be shaped, since this branch was sticking out in the wrong direction. Also, I am hoping to start another young tree from this branch, which I will trim into a "standard" rather than bush shape. This branch was straight and symmetrical enough (in a circular sense) to fit this purpose well. So I have stripped the lower twigs, and hope it will root up nicely (forsythia usually does).
Forsythia cutting
In the few days it has been in the house, it has gone from buds to blooms.
Forsythia cutting forced into bloom early


Shady Gardener said...

This is a fun post! You're excited about Spring - and well you should be. :-) Love the little frogs... too bad, actually, that they're hidden later. ha. Your lights are great!!

Lavender Cottage said...

I am so envious of your spring condtions. Here, they are calling for more snow tonight.
I like the new garden lights, they'll look great when the flowers are in bloom.

tina said...

Good morning. Your garden is so pretty even in winter I decided to comment here, but wanted to say I think you are most creative. The puppet and watermelon carvings are very nice. I bet it took a long time to make them both.

I like your garden very much. Signs of spring are so welcomed this time of year. What is the red branched tree in front of the shed? It looks like coral bark maple? It's very pretty. I also really like your definition of low maintenance. That is the first really good (and realistic) definition of a low maintenance garden. I'm going to try to stick to it here.

tina said...

P.S. If you wanted to you could delete that bad comment under Shady's. It's pretty easy but it took me a long time to figure it out myself.

Garden Lily said...

Tina - Thanks, I hadn't noticed that comment, it's gone now.

Sigrun said...

It's nice to see signs of spring with our feet and feet of snow still on the ground. Love the lanterns. We're usually so busy with the greenhouse that I don't take the time to notice the little signs of spring. I will have to take a lesson from you and Crafty Gardener about carrying the camera with me. Love digital!

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