June 12, 2005 10:31 PM PST
It's still spring (for another week or so), so I've collected some of my flower related shots over the past few months.
Crocus flowers in Vancouver Canada. These bulbs rebloom each year in January and February; before almost all other flowers.
Flowering tree in San Jose. I love that trees flower. It's something I never noticed as a kid.
Camellia petals and hail. Camellias are an evergreen bush that bloom over a period of several weeks in the early spring with massive amounts of large (3") flowers. The petals fall to the ground and create a carpet. The great thing about these is they do well in the shade, are evergreen during the winter and even small plants have tons of blooms.
Tulip, Azalea and Pine. Tulips bloom in March-April. This one blooms each year, but apparently not all tulip bulbs are hearty enough to last year to year (unlike most other spring and summer bulbs). Azaleas are actually miniature Rhododendrons, and although this picture doesn't show it, in the spring there is a period of about a week where the entire bush is all flowers, with no visible leaves. Should have taken a picture of that...
Flowering tree. Amazing the number of blooms these trees produce in April for about 7-10 days. When the petals fall it's literally like drifts of snow 4-6 inches deep in some places.
Tulips in a terraced bed I built last year. There are also crocus and hyacinth in here, but they've already finished flowering at this point. Notice the wax covered rose canes in the front of the bed - 5 plants total. These are a new addition this year, and should grow nicely in this spot - lots of drainage and airflow, lots of sun, and a tree overhead to reduce rainwater dampening the leaves.
A flowering tree in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Irises and daffodils. The irises are are from an "heirloom" bed that's 30+ years old. They're incredibly hardy with the bulbs multiplying underground each year. Each plant puts out a stalk or two containing about 4 flowers, each of which lasts only a day or two. For several months after the bloom, the large green blades take in energy for the bulbs to multipy and make it through the winter. The daffodils in the background came up a bit late (after there were leaves on the tree above) so they don't get quite as much sunlight as they like. Hopefully they'll bloom earlier next year while the tree is still dormant.
This is some type of very geometric succulant flower growing in a planter.
Another tulip in April with interesting illumination and shadows. Tulips blooms remain for 2-3 weeks, closing up at night, and opening for the sun like we see here.
Another flowering tree - they line my street. Beautiful, but not great for Spring allergies!
It takes good dirt to grow great flowers. Six cubic yards of dirt was a bit more than I envisioned (but it was cheaper than the 3 yards I needed)! Normally, when you buy potting soil at the store it comes in 1 or 2 cubic foot bags. This is 162 cubic feet (like 80 wheelbarrows, or a full truckload). You'll see in my Summer garden what I've done with all this dirt. It always strikes me as ironic that we actually PAY for dirt now.
A recent shot of some nearby trees and the sunset colors. It had been cloudy all day, and the sun finally came through once it got low enough in the sky. This Birch tree used to have two trunks, and in an ice storm a few years ago, the tips of the tree actually bent over and touched the ground. One snapped under the pressure, but the other regained its upright stature over the next few months. I have those pictures to use in another series.