Monday, April 4th, 2011...12:00 am

Plants that Bloom in Winter

Natural Light (Narcissus pseudonarcissus) by Nietnagel

The period between winter and spring always seemed the saddest time of the year. The landscape seemed so dull and muddy after the pretty snows of winter and before the flowers burst open in the spring. That was before TheGardenLady learned that there are some winter flowering plants that bloom in the “dark” of winter and that keep blooming well into spring. The plants I prefer are the hardy perennials, bulbs and shrubs. Of course, I still cannot wait for the real spring blooming flowers that always seem to be such a miracle when they open, reliably, every Spring.

Since I now know that there are winter-flowering plants, this Garden Lady has been adding more and more of these wondrous plants to my garden. This way when I go out to look in my garden, even before the last snows have fallen, there is something to delight the eye. And it is amazing to me when I discover the little bursts of flowers that distract from the barrenness of the landscape and are a harbinger of the more spectacular show of flowers that I know are just a few months away.

Of course there are the hardy bulbs that open early. There are some very early blooming daffodil and narcissus. Two of the earliest to bloom are the “Lent lily” Narcissus pseudonarcissus (see here) or Rijnveld’s Early Sensation (see here or here).  If snow comes, their open flowers will not be destroyed. I keep on planting more and more daffodils in my garden and can not get enough of them. And the good thing is that hungry squirrels and deer or other varmints won’t eat them because daffodils are poisonous. Thus they bloom for my enjoyment. Since I don’t have those earliest flowering daffodils and I don’t have my daffodils planted in a sheltered place, my daffodils are still mostly in bud.

043/365: February Daffodils by add1sun

There are the crocuses. Mine are in bloom but l worry that the squirrels may eat them. Gardening is a bit like a battle. I have read that Crocus tommasinianus are one of the earliest bloomers and are more squirrel resistant than other crocuses. I will have to order some from one of my favorite catalogs like Brent and Becky’s Bulbs.

Grape Hyacinth by Mike_tn

There are the Grape hyacinths, Muscari and the Snow drops, Galanthus- Galanthus elwesii and Galanthus nivalis are two favorites. Another early bulb is Scilla mischtschenkoana. A neighbor has Galanthus covering her front yard. When the last snow disappeared, the lawn remained white with flowers. And now a neighbor has Muscari blanketing her front lawn. This is so lovely I want to be a copycat.

Bulbs are planted in the fall. So remember if you want early blooming bulbs you should order later in the year to plant them in the fall.

Related Content:

Leave a Reply