This warm weather we are experiencing is advancing the calendar of blossoms for spring. Many plants are showing growth and blooms now. Magnolias, the star magnolia group is in full flush of bloom, but the other larger flowered sorts, are now blooming as well. M. ‘Milky Way’, Apollo, Athene, Atlas, are just a few of the newer ones. There are many hybrid developments which supersede the older sorts. Of the species, I mention M. denudata, M. cylindrica, M. liliflora, M. campbellii, M. veitchii, M. sprengeri, M. sargentiana, among the choicest.
Fruit trees such as apricots, apriums, necatarines, peaches, plums, plumcots, pluots are all blooming now. There are also bees to pollinate them. Amazingly, some fruiting cherries are showing their first flowers as well. Ornamental trees and shrubs are beginning to bloom. Exochorda (pearlbush) had begun to bloom its white small clusters. The flowers open to 5 petaled blooms about an inch wide, but the buds are round like pearls, hence the common name. Button spirea (spirea prunifolia plena) is also blooming. Individual flowers are small, pure white and very double like cloth buttons. These are borne all along the ascending stems on an upright bush of easy care. Some viburnums are also showing blossoms. V. burkwoodii, bodnantense cvs. are showing clusters of fragrant blooms. The flowering currants, Ribes spp. are providing the garden with pendant clusters of small flowers in white, pinks, and reds. Osmanthus delavayi, and O. burkwoodii are in bloom showing tubular small white fragrant flowers among the dark evergreen glossy foliage.
The maples are also showing new growth buds expanding into fresh young leaves. As are roses, hydrangeas(no blooms yet, but lots of new shoots)
Spring bulbs are in full glory. Daffodils, narcissus, tulips, etc. are all out and showing color. Ipheon(blue star flower) is an easy care, fast multiplying small clump forming bulb in sky blue, darker blues, and white. Species cyclamen are also blooming, depending on which species.
Wildflowers are all about and showing good blossoms with those last heavy rains. They fade quickly so hurry out to see them during their short burst of color. Among these, you will find choice things like shooting stars, mariposa lilies, fairy toes, trilliums, bleeding hearts, columbines, and so many, many more.