GBBD April – Spring Green

We have had a week of grey days and rain, soft gentle rain so far but storms are predicted. Everything is green, even the silver plants look green as their hairs lie flat against the leaf and stop diffusing the light so they are green instead of silver.  Lavender, Perovskia plus the fresh new foliage of the box all add to the green-ness!

The Lavender and Perovskia are almost as green as the Box

Despite the warm winter most plants are slightly shier to bloom this spring, the freezing cold weather in February has obviously had its effect.  In the middle of the week when I walked around wondering what would be flowering for 2012’s April GBBD I believed there were far fewer blooms than last year; and it is true that some plants are just beginning to flower instead of being in full-bloom but today when I ventured out between the showers I found some tight buds had opened so that this April’s post is more similar to last years than I thought.  If you would like to compare with last year please click here.

The yellow roses are just opening to complement the wisteria

Even the weather is not dissimilar to last year, so spring rain is not unusual … and thank goodness for that as the ground was very dry – we have had virtually no rain for a year except for the flood in September.  Temperatures are lower than they were a month ago we had a slight frost the other morning and tonight is forecast to dip to 3°C so I haven’t planted out my tomatoes just yet although they are getting tall and have flowers so I would like to get them into the ground.

It seems early for cistus but it was flowering last year at this time too.

....and this is a very early Thyme

R. mutablis

There are fat buds on many of the Bearded Irises so they won’t be long; all the roses are full of bud and hope for a good show, Rosa mutabilis is always the first to have a lot of bloom and this year is no exception, I do think this is such a good value rose.  It flowers for 9 months of the year and the foliage is a great colour and very healthy.

April is THE month for tulips!

Click on the image below to see all the blooms in My Hesperides Garden this April GBBD, and a very happy Bloom Day to all gardeners everywhere.

I’m linking to Carol at Maydreams who hosts this interesting meme.  Visit her to see what’s happening in other parts of the world at this special time of year- spring in the northern hemisphere and autumn in the southern hemisphere.  From recent posts it seems much of the world is having rain – always good for the garden.

30 thoughts on “GBBD April – Spring Green

  1. Oh how beautiful your garden is looking and how privileged I feel to be able to share your spring joys as my garden starts to rest. Really lovely Christina – you must be very proud of your beautiful gardens. Everything looks picture perfect! The yellow rose with the Wisteria – perfect! The violet coloured tulip, the Thyme, Irises and grasses … All simply beautiful!!

  2. You really have a lot of beautiful flowers there! I’m far behind you! I love that thyme carpet, I’ like a similar effect on a new bed I’m working on, how many plant did you put there? And how long did you wait to have it spreading like that?

    • Hi Alberto, yes, everything is starting to bloom now, spring is here even it is with rain! I planted 3 thyme plants and they grew together very quickly, 2 seasons probably plus I have taken pieces from the edge and planted them in other places in the garden, on the slope for example and given lots to frinds so it is a real winner. Christina

  3. Hi Christina – your garden is showing what we have now and the treats to come over the next couple of months! It shows how differently our favourite plants can behave depending on the climate within they’re placed.

    Like you we’ve been glad of the spring rain we’ve had over the past week or so. Not enough to halt the hosepipe ban elsewhere in England though!

    • In theory there is a permanent hose pipe ban for water anything but vegetables in Italy. We have a well so I use sparingly as the well is all the water we have for the house too! I think it is good to be so conscious of the water we use as gardeners, often rather wasted I feel.

      • I agree – having a house with a water meter concentrates the mind beautifully when you know it’ll result in a bigger bill! I’m also a freshwater biologist and have been involved in research re low flows on rivers due to over abstraction in the past…

        • There was a discussion on (I think) Gardeners question time explaining that most plants will learn grow with less water if you stress them to the point that their roots will go deeper to search out water. I’m sure this is true. It also means that plants grow sappy and need staking; I don’t stake at all in my garden despite living with strong winds in summer as well as winter. Christina

          • that’s right – the National Trust gardeners at Nyman’s researched it a few years ago. I try not to water at all unless something’s looking really stressed and it’s worked well thus far

            • That is my approach exactly. If an established plant can’t cope I decide that it isn’t suited to my condiditions and give it to someone. I have a Cornus alternifolia that I’d always wanted but despite watering a great deal it is getting smaller rather than growing, so I’m looking for a suitable home for that. Christina

    • Hi Rosie. The Perovskia loves my free-draining soil; it self seeds almost too much! I am a great believer in growing the right plant in the right soil conditions to make gardening easy! Christina

  4. Some of my irises have fat buds and others no sign of any flowers at all. I saw some peonies that had already flowered in Herefordshire today near the Welsh borders which seemed very strange.

    • We have a peony farn near us that I will visit this week, I have posted about it before. My peopny doesn’t do well in my garden. I moved it last autumn and it has 3 buds one of which seems to have been eaten my something, Christina

  5. Christina it is amazing to see all that is blooming for you although we are not too far behind..with our mild winter the lavenders remained more alive than I usually find…I love seeing all you have blooming…our cold weather has warmed a bit and the garden is catching up.

    • We are lucky that the Lavender are usually full of foliage all winter, which does give us a head start in spring. They have already grown almost a couple of inches since they were pruned a month ago. Christina

  6. Hello again, Christina – wow, loving that Cisitus. It reminds me of a paler one I grew from cuttings from a plant in my last garden. It wasn’t too hardy with me and sadly after one hard winter I lost it 😦

    It’s weird for me to imagine sitting here in my Scottish garden that you have flowering now yellow Roses, purple Wisteria (my buds have a bit to go yet and usually flower first few days in June!), Spring green Tulips and a carpet of flowering Thyme. This is where GBBD comes into its own and what fun it is to browse the gardens 😀

  7. So many pretty things this month! Lets see… I love the white tulip in the lavender. Just the perfect restrained color. The wisteria – oh my! It looks like the birds have left it alone more this year. Is this true? Perfect with the yellow rose. And the very last photo of your hillside with the irises and poppies… I love it. Truly. Wonderful job designing your Italian paradise, Christina!
    Happy April!~

    • Hi Julie, this year the same end section of the pergola is without flowers, I do see birds near buds but the fact that only one section is effected I think is due to the exposure to the North East wind, the rest is protected by the house. I will try your idea of some black threads near the buds on this section next year, just to confirm the cause. Christina

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