|Sweetshrub Calycanthus floridus|
We will start in the shade garden where the sweetshrub's buds are about to open (above). The flowers and the leaves of the sweetshrub, sometimes called Carolina allspice, are fragrant. In the picture below the sweetshrub is in the foreground, with ferns, hostas, and various groundcovers beneath.
|A patchwork of plants in the shade garden.|
|Two gold-mound spiraea Spiraea japonica anchor the statue|
As we walk around the front of the house we discover a very different kind of spiraea, the lovely bridal veil, so aptly named with branches that arch gracefully to the ground.
|Blossoms of the Bridal veil spiraea|
|Bridal veil spiraea Spiraea vanhoutte|
I love white blooms and there are many in my spring garden, including the beautiful snow azalea.
|Snow azalaea Rhododendron mucronulatum|
I don't know the name of this variety of red azalea. I like the dramatic effect of the red blossoms against the green-textured globe arborvitae.
|Azalea and globe arborvitae|
The flower buds of the rhododendron are about to burst open.
All across the garden we can smell the sweet perfume of the Russian olive, pulling us into the Woodland Walk. We cross the bridge over bluebell creek - how happy the English bluebells make me feel - and enter the woodland garden.
Although the Russian olive and the wild honeysuckle are invasive, causing H.H. to spend many hours trying to eradicate them, for a short time in the spring we are glad they are blooming there.
|Honeysuckle and Russian olive in the Woodland Walk|
|Bush honeysuckle Diervilla lonicera|
The new leaves on the andromeda are brilliant red. I am happy to grow this shrub in the Woodland Walk because the deer find it unappealing.
|Japanese andromeda Pieris japonica 'Mountain Fire'|
Now follow me into the perennial garden where I have some evergreen, non-flowering shrubs. Their columnar and global shapes add structure where it could otherwise look 'disorganized' - the nature of the cottage-garden style. The two different views, below, of one of my biota in the spring cottage garden illustrate my point.
|Golden Biota Platycladus cupressaceae|
|Another view of the biota.|
At the end of the summer, my favorite shrub, caryopteris, blooms.
|Blue Mist Shrub Caryopteris 'Dark Night'. September 2010|
|Caryopteris with carpenter bee. September 2010|
|Butterfly bush Buddleja davidii August 2010|
Now I must show you my latest aquisition, a viburnum that we planted today. I have wanted one for a long time. The one I purchased grows quite large ( 15' high and 15' wide), so we located it in front of the ugly pasture fence, hoping it will eventually hide it. The clusters of pure white flowers, arranged in two rows above the branches, make a lovely spring display.
|Maries' Viburnum Viburnum plicatum tomentosum 'Mariesii'|
Below, you can see some of the flowers we saw blooming as we walked, today. Clockwise, from the top left: iris, lupine, English bluebells, chive, peony bud with bee, and snow-in-summer.
And some of the critters we saw ...
|Female ruby-throated hummingbird|
|Three indigo buntings in the catalpa tree.|
I hope you enjoyed walking with me!
Happy Gardening, Pamela x
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