There was a lot going on today out in the gardens and at the Horticulture Center. Of course we had another rainy day although it was light enough most of the day that we were able to get outside. There was plenty to see out in the gardens and I was able to tour quite extensively. Above is the arched bridge this morning with weeping willows (Salix) showing early color in the distance. This bridge is the most photographed spot out in the gardens and I take my share of images each year (and seasonally) as well. Below is the 'Mt. Hood' grape hyacinth (Muscari armeniacum) looking sharp today. Most of the grape hyacinths (Muscari sp.) have started blooming and will peak over the next week or two with plenty of color. The second photo down shows the colorful foliage of the variegated sweet iris (Iris pallida 'Albo-Variegata') which will be blooming light blue in a couple of weeks.
The grounds staff had a busy day. Larry focused on getting the sunken garden pool and fountain operational and bounced between some other tasks. Jenny organized some labels and moved on to a huge mulching project near the Nancy Yahr Memorial Children's Garden. Cheryl focused her tidying efforts in the sunken garden and Pat worked on securing the giant obelisk (third photo down) as well as some other projects including helping train a weeping ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba 'Pendula') with staking and wiring. Janice worked on greenhouse duties, plant sale details, the Thomas Jefferson Collection (with John) in the fourth photo down and many other tasks. Big John also worked on edging, securing benches, staging mulch piles and other duties. Between meetings, I continue to prepare for the crazy spring that will become very involved next week with our Spring Plant Sale and Tree Sale (see our website).
There was additional activity out in the gardens this morning. We have concrete contractors preparing our front walkways for new concrete on Monday (see above). It will be nice to have these paths upgraded and we'll also be replacing much of the older bricks/blocks in the entrance garden patios. We had a great turnout of Grumpies today for a wide range of tasks. Directly below are Ron R. (left) and Larry H. continue to mulch paths and compost beds in the future Jungle Garden. The guys loaded, hauled and spread many loads of materials this morning. The second photo shows Gary B. (left) and Dick H. working on assembling our Spring Plant Sale tables that will go in to immediate use early next week as plants begin to arrive. Dave, Vern, Jim and Ron Y. continued to work on carpentry projects including preparing doors for our Jungle Garden and further progress on our second giant obelisk. Maury helped with various projects, ran for supplies and worked on looming Tree Sale details. Bob K. had some electrical work at the Parker Education Center and Dr. Gredler did some mowing. Bill O. came in later to help tidy up and we also saw Bev D., Bev W., Joel R. and many others today. Further below are more showy images from today.
white pasque flower (Pulsatilla vulgaris 'Alba')
more daffodils (Narcissus) blooming today
lungwort (Pulmonaria) emerging and just starting to bloom
'Black Diamond' hellebore (Helleborus)
Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica)