Above is a nice close-up of a pansy (Viola x wittrockiana) in a sunken garden container. The pansies are looking good but will be replaced with summer annuals shortly. Our yard added more plants today for the gardens including lots of shrubs, annuals and all of our hanging baskets. It is an amazing transition for our holding yard to go from being fully stocked for the Spring Plant Sale last weekend to becoming almost full now with our plants. We are poised and ready! We still have plenty more to go pick up and have delivered over these coming weeks though. Directly below is the wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) and beneath that, some shooting stars (Dodocatheon meadia) in the gazebo garden. I love this time of year with all the green lawns, vivid colors and seemingly, something new to observe around every corner and bend.
Our spring planting started in earnest today with Patrea (above) planting 200 curled parsley (Petroselinum crispum) in our Rainbow Garden. The parsley will grow to be a short hedge that will define our various color sections along with delineating the perimeter and bisecting woodchip path. Dr. Gredler was in for some mowing and Stan started trimming some of the pines (Pinus) that are in need of shaping and "candling". Kay did a nice job finishing weeding the east end of the shade garden and also finished composting this large space. No weed escapes her attention. Gena, Myrt and Nancy came in this afternoon to accomplish some more mulching around the outside of the gazebo garden. We also saw Deb G., Karen B., Bev F., Maury, Glenn, Dr. Yahr, Chuck S., Kris K. and many others today. Janice was in as a volunteer to work with the Chestnut House volunteers. They did a great job planting our mini-pumpkin collection at the Horticulture Center.
The grounds staff enjoyed the sunshine and helped with a wide range of tasks. Above is John (in the endloader) unloading one of three trees that was part of our woody plant order from Wirkus Nursery (Clinton, WI). John also went on two plant runs to K&W Greenery and brought back two good-sized loads which included all of our hanging baskets for the gardens. Jenny spent the day in the yard matching labels to the plants that have recently arrived. This allows us to take the labels out when we plant these which isn't always the easiest policy to follow when it gets crazy. Jenny is very organized and has really streamlined that process over the years. She makes labels as we need them too. Terry worked on myriad projects including putting in new edging in the sunken garden (as seen below) to help minimize the constant washout of mud from this bed every time it rains. Cheryl spent most of her day in the gazebo garden digging and potting up our "desirable" perennials from a border with many "undesirables" that will be sprayed with herbicide soon for a fresh approach to that entire border. She did a nice job. Cindy was in for a half day and worked her "kung fu" on the formal annual sections with some composting and weeding. She did a thorough job and we'll see her later in the week. I had some meetings and worked on various projects including going through the billing for the plant sale and recent orders. My desk work consumes more time each year but that's just the way of it.
Colorful foliage in spring is just as eye catching as flowers. Below are four emerging plants with interesting foliage (identified under their image). Further below are four images of a 'Purple Sensation' ornamental onion (Allium) opening up in to this gorgeous sphere (umbel). These stages happen over the course of just a couple days. Our 50,000+ ornamental onions (Allium) in the garden will be hitting peak by early next week with this recent warmth. More plant pick-ups, planting and garden work tomorrow! We have volunteers from Oakhill Christian School coming to help and plenty of our regular Grumpies and hopefully returning Grumpettes!
variegated zelkova (Zelkova serrata 'Goshiki') from below
tricolor European beech (Fagus sylvatica 'Roseo-marginata') from below
'Root Beer' coral bells (Heuchera) spring foliage
'Ginger Peach' coral bells (Heuchera) spring foliage