It Must Be Spring

single snowdrop

A solitary snowdrop

It has become a tradition on this blog every spring to mark the appearance of the year’s first flowers. They are always the same: the alpine garden’s small, isolated colonies of Galanthus elwesii and Colchicum bulbocodium (or Bulbocodium vernum). The snowdrops began nosing above the soil around April 10th and then disappeared for a few days under a dump of snow.  The first Colchicum came along a few days later, and more are coming.  In their fourth spring now, both are established and slowly increasing. (Click on the pictures to enlarge them.)


Galanthus elwesii

Spring meadow saffron

Spring meadow saffron: Colchicum  bulbocodium / Bulbocodium vernum














It is unusual to see any Primulas in April, but here is one, a very dark red P. acaulis hybrid, from Barnhaven seed, I believe.

Dark red Primula acaulis / vulgaris hybrid

First primrose


Under the apple tree with the Barnhaven primroses, these little blue squills, like most spring bulbs in this climate, have needed a few years to form a little bunch. They’ll be brilliant in bloom, but could they be at their best in bud?

Scilla siberica

Siberian squills, pale in bud

Siberian squill buds

Chalk-drawn buds of Scilla siberica

Finally, a few crocuses. I don’t recall seeing these purple-and-whites before, and I found a couple in the alpine pan, as well. Maybe I planted them last fall. One nice thing about gardening with a tired old brain: lots of surprises in the spring.


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