Tag Archives: snowdrop

First Flowers of 2019 Arrive


March 23, 2019–First flowers of spring include this crocus in my backyard.

The creek behind my house has returned to its banks, and the Cedar River is dropping for now. We’ve been lucky in my area, I hope my western Iowa and Nebraska neighbors can recover from this sudden, wet spring.

Today was the final Saturday of spring break, and I spent a fair amount if it indoors vainly battling with the mountain of grading Which Must Be Done By Monday.

But for a while this afternoon, I was in the backyard, cleaning debris of winter off of gardens, giving the barren yard a quick rake and scattering grass seed.

Spring may be extraordinarily busy, but it’s still a season of hope. And today, the colors started to appear. I saw a crocus in bloom in the yard, and I know others are poking up. In the garden by the rock wall, some snowdrops are showing their pretty white selves.

No squib yet, but I’m sure it’s on its way. Many daffodils and tulips are starting to push through the thawing ground, and some hyacinth look ready to bloom in a few days.

The world is still largely brown and the ice hills by the parking lots have not yet melted. Flood risk is still with us, as snow north is still melting and rain may fall on sodden ground.

But for today, I saw flowers, and that’s something. The brown season is coming to its end, and everywhere, green is poised to emerge and colors are ready to appear.

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Springtime for Sheller in Cedar Rapids

Corcus.  Croci?

Afternoon light was fading, they had been more open. Crocus by mailbox.

I hope a tune from the “Producers” is going through your head.  First views of Spring 2010 gardens.

Burning love and catalpa

Small pot is burning love, which is fading. Big pot is catalpa, which are fading. But, where there is life there is hope.

Overall, some nice springy things happening before the cold snap.  I have not “cleaned” the gardens–removed the leaves from the fall, and will wait, because colder weather is coming.  But first flowers are here, as you can see.

Starting stuff indoors has been mixed. As you can see in the big pot, a couple of catalpa tress sprouted, but in the little pot, most of the “burning love” bushes that sprouted died, and the catalpa are fading.  It’s hard to keep things wet enough to germinate, but not so wet that young roots don’t rot.  Darn.  I partly inherited my mother’s Irish green thumb (mama barely kept any green growing thing alive, gardening was always daddy’s job).

I’ll put some Hollyhock photos at the end, they are looking better.


Snowdrops bloom even before crocus. Should plant more ...

Outdoors, I’m amazed at all that is already growing.  I love the snowdrops, the little white flowers.

Anyway, Audrey is almost ready to go for a walk, so I’m going to publish now.  Update later.

It’s later now.  My original plan was to clean off the gardens during spring break, but we’ll see what I think of that plan next week–it will be getting into the 20s at night, and I’ll have to consider of the lack of sun is a good trade for protection.

Not that I would necessarily know.

Anyway, I have a lot of work to get to for tomorrow, so I’ll round out this blog post with a selection of early spring garden photos.  (I do wish I had a better digital camera, an SLR that would let me focus manually–many pictures did not work when auto focus insisted on making the background in focus).


Note the flowers just coming up in the "new" garden between houses. What are they? I don't know. Not daffodils or crocus. Planted bulbs in the fall, who knows what they are now?

Two perennials

The garden in front by the fence of neighborliness seems pretty perky for early spring. Foxglove and winter creeper (not sure I'm remembering all those names correctly but they are tagged) recently emerged from three months of snow cover, and are already looking "springy."

More snowdrops

The snowdrops are in one of the back gardens--the one by our retaining wall. The bush behind it is fairly new and looked pretty sickly last year, but already seems to be waking up. It's a blooming bush that hasn't bloomed, hope it does this year.


A "Moscow" lilac, is only 6 inches tall so it won't bloom this year. When it does, it will have pretty white and pink flowers, which will be a nice contrast to the purple, pink and blue lilacs we have elsewhere, and a nearby dwarf purple lilac.

Ground cover

Don't remember the name of this plant, some creeping shade-friendly ground cover, but I know it's not a weed, it is something we planted. Back garden by fence.

Crocus in back garden

This one bloomed a couple of days before the ones by the mailbox in front. I think the tulips in the background may regret being in too big a hurry to pop up next week when the lows dip into the 20s.

Hollyhock finale

And the hollyhocks, pink and white, I think. Some will go in front, a few will get mixed in with black hollyhocks in back. I like the black ones, but if these live, I'll like these happier colors, too. These are growing by a window in my laundry room--you can tell in what direction the window is.

Well, that’s it for the first actual outdoor (and a few indoor) photo gallery of the year.  By the way, the absurd tags on my previous post, or perhaps my announcement of absurd tags on Facebook, or perhaps both, did bring a spike in blog traffic, though not as much as the inexplicable spike earlier this year with my bells post.

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