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Spring has Sprung!

Spring Equinox rolled in early this year, March 19th, at 11:50 EDT p.m. We had a clear night sky and enjoyed watching the International Space Station as it passed over us at 8:07 p.m. As we turned around to the back of the yard the weeping cherry tree blossoms were softly illuminated by a neighbor's porch light. All three events were needed distractions in a world dominated by COVID-19.

The garden is one of my favorite places to find serenity especially when the earth is starting to green up as more plants arise from dormancy.

Epimedium versicolor is very showy this year. This is a group of three plants. Most of the leaves did not acquire the burgundy color that they normally get in Fall. That confirms we had a warm and wet winter.

I love apple greens like the chartreuse bracts of the cushion spurge. This year the periwinkle is framing it with a few blue flowers.

A profusion of delicate, but tough wild violets. We call this blue and white variety "Confederate" violets. I'm not making a political statement, its just the vernacular that I grew up with.

The willow amsonias are setting their flower buds.

Who knew that collards could have a beautiful flower display? I planted these in the herb bed Fall 2019. These are my first collard plants.

One of our garden favorites, Frogs!

White azaleas with pink freckles. This year we covered them with towels several nights to protect them from the cold snap that we had at the end of our mild winter. It was worth the effort. It's very disappointing to wake up to brown flower buds.

A Spring classic, the hyacinth.

Oxalis (wood sorrel) and Pan.

It seems that the Japanese Painted fern emerged overnight.

I have high hopes for this new comer to the garden, Copper Cascade, heucherella. This is a trailing plant. It's in a hanging planter in the dry shade area of the garden.

The tiny flower buds of Domino epimedium will open soon.

The hosta that gets the most sunlight in the fern bed has already unfurled it's leaves.

Just a foot and a half away, its mate is just coming up.

The variegated Solomon's seal plants are in various states of growth. This one has already developed the bell like blossoms.

Yesterday, March 20th, we reached 85 degrees in Durham. That's definitely too hot for this time of year. Fortunately, today was much cooler with cloud cover and mid to high sixties. Warm weather has also brought out the "opportunists". Tony, who mows our lawn next door, had his leaf blower stolen out of his truck while he was mowing this week. GRRRRR! One person works hard, the other not so much.

Back to nice thoughts. Today Ian filled up the garden pond and we did some general garden tidying. Mainly raking up pine straw. I also cut back the Sweet Summer Love clematis which has never bloomed for me. Maybe, it will bloom this year. It's growing through the Brite Eyes climbing rose bush.

Mama and Annette spotted a beautiful woodland plant while walking near the Northgate Park dog park today. Is this a Relict trillium? The park is in a fairly damp low lying area. Mother nature gives the best garden surprises. 3 23 2020- Update. Annette contacted Dr. Joseph Neal, Professor of Weed Science at North Carolina State University . He in turn contacted Johnny Randall at UNC Botanical gardens. It's a Trillium cuneatum. It has several common names such as Little Sweet Betsy. We'll use that as it's my mother's little sister's name.

I hope that everyone gets a chance to step outside and feel the renewal of hope that the promise of Spring brings. Take Care, Everyone!

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