Wednesday, January 15, 2014

My newly purchased Bloomday for January 2014

The local go-to plant for January blooms seems to be the hellebore, sadly none of mine are open yet. You'd think my standing over them with camera in hand would have pushed the flowers over the edge into full bloom, but no. My disappointment over this, mixed with a healthy dose of spring fever, had me walking the isles yesterday at my neighborhood nursery - Garden Fever. Thankfully this sweet little Helleborus lividus 'White Marble' was willing to come home with me, thus breaking the "no flower" curse for this January Bloomday...

However as these things go the buying didn't stop there. You see as I walked past this Hamamelis x intermedia 'Early Bright' I was hit upside the head with the most amazing scent. I usually have great difficulty smelling witchhazel, but this little twig knocked me over with it's powerful fragrance...plus it was that pinky orange color I love...plus I had been considering adding a hamamelis to the garden. Sold!

Once home I looked it up online only to discover this downer of a description from Gossler Farms (they supplied Garden Fever with the plant): "Wow! What fragrance! H. 'Early Bright' has small orange-yellow flowers in January. The flowers aren't very exciting but the fragrance is probably the best of any hamamelis we've sniffed."...THE FLOWERS AREN'T VERY EXCITING. Are you telling me I finally bought a witchhazel but I managed to purchase one with boring flowers? I'm such a loser...
In other Bloomday news...the yellow-puffball flowers of Acacia baileyana 'Purpurea' are filling the shade pavilion greenhouse with their lovely scent.

While the potted Acacia pravissima hasn't quite broke into flower yet.

The buds on Edgeworthia chrysantha ‘Akebono’ are swelling, but still colorless.

And I don't think this Grevillea victoriae has the chutzpah to open anymore of its buds. It's still in shock from the cold.

I'm holding out hope for the Grevillea 'Suberb'...

And trying to do the same for Grevillea juniperina ‘Lava Cascade’ and ‘Molonglo’ both of which are covered in buds but appear to be dying from the center outward (more cold damage).

The Arctostaphylos x ‘Austin Griffiths' is just hours from bursting into full bloom, oddly it's the only one of my four arctostaphylos that has buds on it this year.

If my rather poor Bloomday showing has you wishing for more, visit May Dreams Gardens for links to all the blogs participating in the flower show this month.

All material © 2009-2014 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

47 comments:

  1. I don't think you need to worry about your Hamamelis having boring flowers. Like you, I have a hard time catching the scent of it. That orange and pink combo is a favorite of mine too. What a great choice!

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    1. Thanks Alison! Of course as soon as I read the description I pulled up your recent blog post about your hamamelis. Yours looked so cute with its curly petals I did start to feel like I bought a reject...

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  2. You've got more blooms than many of us do. Perhaps I should start a "dead plant day" meme...

    Witch hazel is one shrub I still need to add -- I'll steer away from the "loser" one you chose. (Kidding of course, it's quite lovely!)

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    1. Do it!!! I for one would love the chance to share my dead plant pain.

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  3. I don't think that's bad at all given the barrage of cold weather you've faced up there. And I think the witch hazel is quite nice despite the advertisement to the contrary - and anything that adds pleasant scent to the garden is valuable by definition. Happy GBBD!

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    1. Thanks Kris, scent is such an amazing part of a garden, when done well. I stopped by a friends garden yesterday to take a few pictures. I was blown away by how good it smelled!

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  4. ".THE FLOWERS AREN'T VERY EXCITING. "

    FEH. Written by somebody that didn't leave the kitchen window to walk across the patio and actually LOOK at the blooms in questions.

    Fantastic little flowers! Look at all that color and are they doing *jazz hands*??? C'MON!

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    1. You crack me up! (*jazz hands*!!!!)

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    2. I love your comment, djinn. I needed that. :)

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  5. I don't really like the Witch Hazel blooms, but several blogs are posting Bloom Day photos and saying what a marvelous aroma they have. And they do bloom when nothing else is in flower. Maybe I should give them a try.
    Happy Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!
    Lea

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    1. I used to be fairly neutral on them, then I realized they reminded me of tiny crepe paper streamers. That pushed me over the edge...

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  6. I see I'm not alone in adding a witch hazel to my garden this winter - I can't for the life of me smell a thing!! and I'm not entirely convinced by the description from Gossler Farms - maybe the writer was wearing shades at the time! What a wonderful place your greenhouse must be.
    Happy Bloom Day :)

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    1. Thank god, it's not just me! The first time I was able to detect the scent was last winter when I was standing under a couple of full size trees.

      As for my greenhouse it's tiny but it makes me happy!

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  7. Ooooooh, 'Early Bright' is the best looking hammamelis I've ever seen! Score!!
    I have blooms on my Arctostaphylos 'Austin Griffiths' but the rest are just like yours, though there's a hint of budding on A. hookeri 'Green on Black'. Maybe next month. Happy Bloom Day!

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    1. Thank you Jane, I love your excitement!

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  8. I'm so jealous of your Witch Hazel...I love them! Truthfully, I've never been able to detect even a hint of fragrance either...so I'm making note of that variety to look out for if I'm ever in the market for one :-)

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    1. It was totally a spur of the moment purchase, if I had stopped to be realistic I probably wouldn't have bought it (space)...but I'm glad I did.

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  9. I'm amazed how many things you have in flower (or very close to it). I've got to check my Acacia pravissima. I don't think there are any signs of flowers yet. I just moved my Grevillea 'Superb' from the backyard where it was too shady to a sunny spot in the front of the house. I don't think it'll have flowers this year, or at least not until it's settled into its new home.

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    1. I wish there was more sun for my G. Superb' (and the leucadendrons too!)...

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  10. Happy GBBD! I love your witch hazel and, having lusted after an orange one myself, and admiring the flowers and fall foliage of 'Diane' I got one over the weekend but am disappointed with the fragrance. Looks like you chose a winner! Your acacia is so sweet with its little pom pom blooms. I wonder how the one at Celestial Dream fared during the freeze?

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    1. 'Diane' is a beauty, sorry about the fragrance. I should check in with Jeff at Celestial, about the acacia and getting his info on plant lust! (thanks for the excuse)

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  11. Those witch hazel blooms don't look boring to us, more like delicate and pretty (wish you can add scent to a blog post!).

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    1. Thanks guys, and I wish so too...

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  12. Would you hate me if I bought the exact same witch hazel? I've been considering putting one in the garden and that bloom color + fragrance = I NEED IT.

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    1. Gosh of course not! You do NEED IT!

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    2. I picked it up tonight after work. That was the best smelling car ride I've had in a long time!

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    3. Oh, me too you guys. I even looked at P Nursery today but they did not have this. I think a trip to G fever is in order. I LOVE your choice, Danger!

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    4. Oh I hope they have another one for you Tamara, or maybe they can bring more in...

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  13. I love the buds on the Grevillea victoriae and the Edgeworthia. I saw the first few Edgeworthia flowers open today here in North Carolina (oh the scent. . . oh the drool. Wait, what? Pardon me.). I can catch a little scent from most witch hazels, but never much. I wouldn't call yours boring at all (besides, it might be sensitive about that.) In fact the extra fragrance I think makes it much better! Fragrance is so often overlooked (literally, people are so visual.) Although saying I favor fragrant plants is too close to picking a favorite plant. Whatever catches your eye, or nose, at the time, right?

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    1. I noticed a few edgeworthia flowers starting to open out there in blog-land yesterday, I wonder how much longer I've got to wait? And indeed, fragrance is often overlooked. My mother has extreme allergies so for her it's a matter of avoiding, something she thankfully did not pass on to me.

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  14. Love you Hamamelis and you will come to appreciate the spidery, crepe paper blooms! I think the author of the description wrote it to protect him/her self from folks complaining about small blooms!

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    1. Ah good point! One must think about such things as the public does come up with some crazy notions.

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  15. I don't know that witch hazel but I think the flowers are gorgeous. It is strange that some smell much stronger than others. You have a winning combination there. I am so jealous of your Edgeworthia. I have lost two. I don't like to think I killed them but despite my best care and magic potions made of eye of newt and toe of frog etc they refused to thrive. what is your secret?
    Chloris

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    1. Oh gosh I can't say that I have a secret, I really just plopped them in the ground. I had no idea they could be finicky.

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  16. I walked by some witch hazels today in SE Portland, not getting a fragrance from any of them. You made an good choice! Color and fragrance in January's gloom can be such a lift. I have two manzanitas, a "Harmony" and "Louis Edmonds". The Harmony was just planted last year, so I expect no blooms, but the Louis Edmonds blooms in April, and is beginning to show buds. I'll have to check out Austin Griffiths, since I'd much rather have blooms now than April when there's so much else blooming. Still, L.E. has beautiful bark and upright form.

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    1. I would definitely describe Austin Griffiths as having beautiful bark and upright form. My others (A. densiflora ‘Harmony’ and A. densiflora ‘Sentinel’) are sprawling misshapen things but Austin is a star.

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  17. Well, I think the flowers on that Witch Hazel are pretty excitng, but then any flowers are exciting to me right now. My garden won't start to bloom for a couple of months. It's under a couple of feet of snow right now. Thanks for sharing the bright rays of sunshine and hope from your garden. Happy GBBD!

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    1. I am such a wimp, the idea of my garden being under a couple of feet of snow is just terrifying. Here's to an early spring for you!

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  18. Ok, I'm feeling pretty jealous..there is not a single thing in bloom in my garden-I don't even have weeds this winter. I'm trapped in a moonscape.

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    1. I am sorry, that's just awful, I think you need to buy yourself a new plant!

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  19. You have plenty in your garden to be proud of and to sniff! I'm jealous - here there's nothing! I was thinking about planting a hamamelis too, because I love them so much (old, happy memories of a garden brimming with them - and sweetly scented Cornus mas - I think you need quite a lot of flowers to really experience the scent when you are outdoors). We're a bit alkaline here, but your pictures have inspired me to have a go - I can only fail!

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    1. That's the attitude! Seriously though you never know until you try.

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  20. Those witchhazel flowers are pretty cool! I especially love the Acacia baileyana.

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    1. Me too. I was pretty sure I'd plant it in the ground this spring, as it is stunted in the container. Problem is that means fairly certain death next winter unless I go to extremes for protection...

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  21. Wish I could sneak into my old (sold) garden about eight blocks away; it had a lot more mature winterblooming shrubs than my new one with little baby shrubs...

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  22. how have the grevillea held up after the freeze? i spotted a blooming grevillea 'long john' at cornell farms today and i am obsessed with them now

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    1. Funny timing to ask. I pulled all the prostrate grevillea yesterday. They were not looking good having lost over half their needles. A couple (I had 6) might have come back from the base (green wood) but they were so ugly I couldn't look at them any longer. All of the upright, bushy ones, seem to be fine.

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