First Flush of Spring

Baby blue eyes on a windy day

In a strange reversal of our usual roles, Ms. Country Mouse has been waxing philosophically about the trials and joys of gardening with CA natives, while I will proceed to do a much more boring "here's what's blooming in the garden right now" post.

CA native currant (Ribes sanguineum var. glutinosum)
The CA native currant that started blooming at least a month ago is still going strong. Horribly difficult to photograph, it's actually very clearly visible to the human eye. Here's a close-up against the Coffeeberry.

CA native currant close-up
The Columbine started blooming only just recently, and I'm hoping I'll have more of the beautiful flowers as spring progresses.

CA native columbine
I certainly expect that more of my Choral bells (Heuchera) will bloom for the next few months. I have in my garden Canyon Delight, Wendy, a few hybrids, and H. Maxima, which really is much larger than the other and blooms strongly right now surrounded by Iris, California bush anemone (Carpenteria, not yet blooming) and a Canyon sunflower.

Different CA natives in part shade
In even deeper shade, the Western bleeding heart (Dicentra formosa) has come back from complete dormancy during summer and fall and is blooming beautifully.

Western bleeding heart
Both Bleeding heart and the Redwood sorrel have suffered greatly in this drought. Both plants are used to some fog drip under the redwood trees, and even though I have some irrigation where they grow, the drip seems to reach primarily the trees. I'm regretting putting drip in that area of the garden and I'm considering conversion to microspray -- for that area only -- to better simulate fog drip.

Redwood sorrel
One of the most enjoyable sights in the spring garden is my Pacific blue sage (Salvia brandegii 'Pacific blue'). I've trellised it along a fence and it seems to do well with aggressive pruning, strong sun, and very low water.

Pacific blue sage
Early spring is its time to shine, and it's a delight for both the humans and the first pollinators. And the birds who come to the bird bath like to hide in the branches while they're drying off.

Pacific blue sage

There's much more going on - the rain has really made a difference! But for now, I'm ending this post with a close-up of Pitcher sage (Lepechina fragrans). Wish I could share the heady fragrance as well...

Pitcher sage

And because it's just that time of the month, I would like to invite all of you to have a look at some of the other gardens that are showing off their spring flowers on Garden Blogger's Bloom Day by May Dreams Gardens. Hard to believe, the gatherings are still going on, and just as much fun as they ever were. Thanks Carol!


Country Mouse said…
It was great to visit your garden yesterday and see how much farther along everything is in such a short time. Such a pleasure to sit in the garden and enjoy your company among the lovely lush foliage and flowers!