Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Crocus Not As Advertised

It's great to see the crocus in bloom.  These were unexpected, however.  Planted last fall, the bulbs were a promising, new and exciting addition to the garden.

Here's the package they came in.  Epic Crocus Fail.  Another case of mislabelled bulbs? Has anyone ever seen an "Orange Monarch" in bloom?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

First Crocus

First Crocus
After the first real winter we have had in about four years, the sight of the first crocus is more welcome than ever.  The tradition continues:  I have no idea what variety this is.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Attention Toronto Gardeners

My Roots Run Deep has been dormant for some time, but with good reason.  This gardener has been busy blogging for a great Toronto garden club.  Please check out the North Toronto Horticultural Society blog for upcoming meetings and lots of great garden information and advice.  And don't hesitate to stop by and say hello.  We get together every month at the Toronto Botanical Garden which is easy to get to by either car or transit.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Parade of Spring Bloomers

Spring marches on.  So many blooms.  So little time to blog. Here is the parade of flowers in my spring garden.

Eastern Redbud

Old-Fashioned Bleeding Heart

Grape Hyacinth

Pulmonaria "Silver Streamers"


PJM Rhododendron

Wood Poppy

Epimedium "Orange Konigin"

Tulipa Sylvestris
Although there are more blooms to come, the flower parade is slowing down.  A towering Norway Maple has already plunged the garden into dense shade, creating conditions for an urban woodland garden.  These springtime blooms usher out the winter and now that their job is done, foliage and groundcovers will take over the show providing a cool and restful space at the height of summer heat.    

Friday, April 20, 2012

Three New Daffodils

Three new daffodils are blooming but I don't know what they are. I planted 15 new daffodil bulbs last fall. 5 came in a bag labeled "Variant." 10 came in a bag labeled "Sorcerer." I thought I was planting two varieties of daffodil. Apparently not. Now that spring is here, there are three distinct daffodils in bloom.

I love the pure white petals on this daffodil. The pink cup was totally unexpected (pink is not my first choice when selecting daffodils). And yet, compared to pink cups I have seen and grown, I quite like this one.

This small-cupped daffodil could be "Sorcerer." I found only one image of "Sorcerer" online and this comes pretty close.

This is the largest daffodil bloom I have ever seen. It is freakishly huge and the stems bend under the weight of the flower. The colour succession on this flower is quite dramatic: the orange cup is surrounded by yellow petals that fade to white at the tips. Very interesting.

The true identities of these daffodils may forever be a mystery to me. Just another reason to never trust a plant label.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

An Exceptional Year for Daffodils

It has been an exceptional year for daffodils. One of my favourites is "Barrett Browning," with its white petals and frilly orange cup. The water droplets are a nice touch. This daffodil has under-performed in the last two years. It is said to be a good naturalizer, however, so I hope it eventually finds its stride because it really is a beauty.

"Minnow" is a miniature with a bloom about the size of a thumb print. Even a small grouping of "Minnow" looks very impressive as each stem can carry multiple blooms.

The King Alfreds (which aren't really King Alfreds) look stunning as usual.

Tete-a-Tete, another miniature, continues to bloom its little head off. The first blooms appeared in late March. This is a garden work-horse. I dare say it's a guaranteed bloomer even for gardeners who have a lot of bad luck.

This unknown daffodil variety continues to be my favourite. It has returned reliably for years.

I was worried for the daffodils during our March heatwave. But now that temperatures have returned to seasonal and even a little below seasonal, the daffodils seem quite content and I am more than happy to enjoy their long-lasting blooms.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Time for Tete-a-Tete

The Tete-a-Tete daffodils have been in bloom for a couple of days already. Through sheer luck I've managed to place them in such a way that a few clumps are poking through the cinammon-peach foliage of the "Southern Comfort" Coral Bells. Despite my various attempts at garden design, some of the most pleasing combinations in the garden are simply a fluke.

Tete-a-Tete is a miniature daffodil with a real sense of drama. Notice how the petals flare back and away from the cup? That's some serious floral attitude.

There are so many reasons to grow Tete-a-Tete. The bulbs bloom reliably and profusely. The flowers are long-lasting, much more so than regular daffodils. Tete-a-Tete is a very early bloomer. Once the crocus are done, Tete-a-Tete fills the garden with sunshine. Their diminutive size is very charming. And, perhaps the reason I love them most: the squirrels don't touch them. If you are looking for an easy bulb that all but guarantees lots of blooms Tete-a-Tete is a winner.