Thursday, May 21, 2015

Glorious Spring At Last!

Royal Star Magnolia Shrub

Wow! Everything is coming fully alive now! Some trees and shrubs still haven't fully leafed out yet though. Three weeks ago Syracuse broke a daily temperature and got up to 90! But yesterday it snowed in Copenhagen and Richland, NY. And tonight there are frost warnings in our area of Central and Northern New York.

And the pollen count is high in the northeast as well. What is contributing to it is the fact that a lot of the trees that come into flower early are late this year because of the cold spring temperatures so they are flowering the same time as the spring flowers. Double whammy!

We've been busy (like everyone else I'm sure). . . lots of gardening work to do. I'm trying impatiens again this year. After the impatiens blight of a few years ago where they recommended that you not plant them for a few years until the spoors died out, I thought I'd see how they do. One of my neighbors planted them last year, but she replaced all the soil in that garden.

Wild Trout Lilies (or Dogtooth Vilots)

And the dandelions are blooming in the lawn. I used to hate them, but now I realize that the pollinators need them for early spring food before the other flowers come into full bloom, so now I don't mind them so much.

These are the sprouts of Solomon's Seal. They look like aliens to me when they first come up.

We have used Milorganite on our lawn as a organic fertilizer. It's also supposed to help in discouraging the deer from making a meal on your flowers and vegetables. I have not found it to be that effective in discouraging the deer, but it could be I didn't put it on often enough. I think that if the deer are hungry enough they'll eat anything, even plants that are deer resistant like marigolds.

Wild Trilliums in the woods.

I had a nice surprise a few days ago. A tree that I bought a few years ago, a magnolia tree that grows in the north, had a few flowers on it. I knew that it would eventually flower, but I thought maybe it would flower after the leaves appeared on it. The flowers have such an unusual shape, too. It's called a Magnoila Zenii (Zen Magnolia). It didn't have that many blooms on it and they didn't last very long - but Wow! the flowers were exquisite.

Flower from Magnolia Zenii

My weeping cherry tree never bloomed last year, but it was beautiful this year. That poor little tree has been through so much. It was chewed to the ground (twice) by rabbits several years back, so this tree trunk is actually from one of the branches. You can tell how deep the snow was because the bottom branches are trimmed up from where the rabbits can reach them.

Weeping Cherry Tree

Flowers of the weeping cherry tree

A photo of our back yard in early spring

The daffodils were beautiful this year

Turn up your volume to hear the Wood Thrushes in our backyard. My husband took this video about a week ago. You can't see the Wood Thrushes in the video. They are very reclusive and spend a lot of time in the underbrush of trees and shrubs in deciduous woods.

Enjoy the sights and sounds of spring ~ 

No matter how long the winter, 
spring is sure to follow. 
~ Proverb

Feel free to leave a comment. 
I would love to hear from you!


  1. Beautiful pics and always

  2. The flower on the Zen Magnolia is gorgeous. It would make a great watercolor painting. I might try to use your outlook on the dandelions and not think of them as the enemy in the grass.
    Thank Ted for the beautiful sound of spring.

    1. Thank you, LuLu. Yes, the Zen Magnolia was very beautiful. When the flower opened up, it didn't last very long at all. And it really didn't have many blooms on the tree. I'm hoping that next year might provide a more showy tree with lots of flowers.
      What nice about the dandelions is that at least they are only in bloom in early spring and we don't have to look at them all season long.
      Will pass on your message to Ted! Thanks for commenting.

  3. Love the Magnolia flower.....would love to see the whole tree in bloom!

    1. Thanks, Ann! I'm hoping next year will bring out a lot more of those blooms. This year there was only about 5 flowers on that tree and it didn't look that great.

  4. We are on the same roller coaster here. Snow was predicted but did not hit my area. We broke records for four days straight too. I like your recently new Magnolia, nice it flowered this year. I missed seeing the thrush in your video, but I know they are elusive. I had one foraging in my garden last year which was very unusual for that species. I got photos, but like you mentioned, they quickly move on out of camera range.

    1. Hopefully after tonight we will be pretty much finished with the cold weather.
      I was really surprised with the Magnolia Zen. I'm not sure if it was labeled wrong or not, but when I Googled pictures of Magnolia zenii they appeared to be different than mine. Of course most of the trees on Google were in full bloom of the entire tree so it was hard to tell if the flowers are the same. I'll have to do a little more checking on this tree to see if that's what I really have.
      Thanks for your comments, Donna.

  5. Sue I still am in awe of how much later your garden is than mine....and wow have we had weird weather here too...I love that magnolia and how it blooms so nicely for you up all is coming along so beautifully.

    1. Thank you, Donna. I can't wait to see how that magnolia does next year. It sure was a surprise this year.
      I think one of the reasons that we might have later spring bloomers up here is because of our close proximity to Lake Ontario. The lake was frozen over for so long that it took awhile for the air to warm up over the lake. But then on the plus side that helps to keep us cooler in the summer as well (sometimes). Thanks for commenting.