Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. April Beauties. 2017.

‘Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colour there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night.‘  Rainer Maria Rilke.

Indeed, April flowers  are the most exciting of the whole year. And if you are as fanciful as Rilke, you would say that the whole garden is a joyful shout of delight.  We have had some warm weather and every day brings more treasures until you want to put your hand up and shout ‘Slow down!’

There were no magnolias in this garden when I came, but now I have several as spring is not the same without them. Lovely ‘Leonard Messel’  blooms prolifically but now he has finished. But we still have ‘Black Tulip’ which is not black and the flowers are more like water lilies  than tulips. But it is beautiful.

Magnolia ‘Black Tulip’

Magnolia stellata has the same starry flowers as ‘Leonard Messel’ and I am very grateful to my lovely friends, Kitty and Olive, (not their real names, but names they seem to be stuck with) who bought this standard for my birthday last year.

Magnolia stellata

The late Princess Sturdza of Le Vasterival garden near Dieppe told me that ‘Star Wars’ was her favourite magnolia. This hybrid from New Zealand has huge, fragrant rosy pink flowers and I am delighted with it. If you are thinking of buying the ubiquitous Magnolia soulangeana don’t, buy this beauty instead.

Magnolia ‘Star Wars’

And of course, I had to have Magnolia ‘Elizabeth’. It has lovely primrose yellow flowers which are a perfect match for the Coronilla valentina behind it. This shrub has deliciously fragrant flowers which seem to stay around for most of the year.

Magnolia ‘Elizabeth’

Still on a yellow theme, the first rose to flower in my garden is the dainty, yellow ‘Canary Bird’.

Rosa xanthina ‘Canary bird’

Down in the orchard we have apple and pear blossom and this crab apple, Malus ‘Princeton Cardinal’ is gorgeous. Behind it you can see a pear tree which is full of blossom.

Malus ‘Princeton Carnival’

I have a Malus transitoria which I grew from seed 8 years ago. This year for the first time it has some blossom so I am excited to see whether the fruit will come true.

Malus transitoria seedling

Shrubs looking good now include some camellias in pots.

I love gleaming white Exochorda x macrantha ‘The Bride”

Exochorda x macrantha ‘The Bride’

Favourite climbers are two Akebias, one wine red, Akebia trifoliata  and the other a cream Akebia quinata.

The fragrant climber Holboellia latifolia came from the amazing Crug  Farm Nursery and has a collection number rather than a name.

Holboellia latifolia

But it is the smaller April treasures which really set my heart beating faster. Little woodlanders like these wood anemones. The first one is a delicate blue colour which hasn’t come out very well on the photo.

Also enjoying woodland conditions are the erythroniums.  I love Erythronium ‘Pagoda’ with the Blue Brunnera ‘Jack Frost’, white dicentra, ferny corydalis and Heuchera  ‘Apple Crisp’.



Epimediums spread and seed about too. I have them in a range of colours.

The double Bloodroot, Sanguinaria canadensis ‘Plena’ spreads around. The only problem is remembering where it is when it disappears in summer. I planted a Chrysanthemum right in the middle of it.

Sanguinaria canadensis ‘Plena’

And I nearly forgot the lovely clump of Trillium grandiflorum.

Trillium grandiflorum

The winter garden is looking lovely at the moment as all the small bulbs are in bloom.

I have added quite a few of my favourite small narcissus bulbs.

In a pot I have the little Narcissus bulbodicum conspicuus.

Narcissus bulbocodium conspicuus

And in a pot on the table is the first of the little pleione flowers. These live in the greenhouse in winter.

Pleione formosa

I am very fond of muscari. Some of them have finished now, but ‘White Magic’ is still going strong and the fragrant yellow Muscari ‘Golden Fragrance’ does well in the new gravel garden.

Bellevalia looks like a huge navy blue grape hyacinth.

Bellevalia pycnantha

I love dicentras or Lamprocapnos as we are supposed to call them now. I have a new one called ‘Valentine’. It has beautiful red stems.

Dicentra spectabilis ‘Valentine’

The bergenias that I planted for winter leaf colour are blooming now and the flowers are a bonus. This one peeping from behind Euphorbia ‘Glacier Blue’  is ‘Bressingham Salmon’.

One of my favourite euphorbias in spring is the neat little Euphorbia polychroma with its buttercup yellow flowers.

Euphorbia polychroma

Here are a few other blooms giving me pleasure at the moment.

I haven’t shown you any tulips so here is the potful by my back door. I have filled it full of sunset shades including ‘Brown Sugar’ which is the particular pet of the Tulip Queen, Christina.

And I nearly forgot to show you the first of my species peonies which is in bloom now. The delectable Paeonia mascula subs.mascula. Sorry about the tautology, I didn’t name it.

Paonia mascula subs. mascula

I have not mentioned any primroses, this is because they are a particular passion and deserve a post of their own.
I suppose I should finish with the enormous cherry tree which is living on borrowed time. I can’t really ignore it as it is the first thing I see when I look out of the window. Vulgar, I call it.

April bloom day is the best of the whole year, do see what other people are enjoying. Thank you Carol at Maydreams Gardens for hosting.

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50 Responses to Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. April Beauties. 2017.

  1. Cathy says:

    Your garden, always beautiful Chloris. Thanks for the comments and pictures of Magnolia ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Black Tulip’. They both look gorgeous. Isn’t it funny how things are faster/slower in different places. My Anemone nemorosa has been over for a week, but the ‘Canary Bird’ hasn’t started flowering yet. And they are next to each other, so it’s not garden position. Have an excellent Easter weekend!

    • Chloris says:

      Thank you Cathy. And now we have these bloom day posts we can compare how everything varies from year to year and it amazes me how different it is. Some things are earlier, some later.

      • Cathy says:

        It is a great idea. I wish I could be better organised because it also makes a good personal record for the blog, doesn’t it?

  2. Your garden is glorious! I wish I could stroll through it.

  3. susurrus says:

    I’m in a yellow frame of mind today it seems – I love the yellow magnolia, the erythroniums and that sweet little yellow wood anemone.

  4. Eliza Waters says:

    Such a wonderful riot your garden is right now, Chloris. I wish I could see it in person, alas, this post will have to do!

  5. Ellie says:

    Beautiful! I have Magnolia Liliflora Susan in a large pot, but would love more magnolias one day (not in my current garden though). Star Wars looks wonderful and I have noted Black Tulip before. At least I can enjoy these lovelies, thanks to you.
    Best wishes

    • Chloris says:

      Susan is a wonderful choice, I have it too but it is not very big yet. The flowers are a wonderful colour. Star Wars gets very big but Black Tulip is more compact.

  6. mrsdaffodil says:

    You are way ahead of us – more advanced into spring, and your garden is full of wonders. Love the quote from Rilke!

    • Chloris says:

      Spring is early this year, we had very warm weather and everything was rushing into bloom. It’ s turned cold again now though. Typical Easter weather. Yes, I love the Rilke quote too, it really feels as though the garden is shouting with delight.

  7. Things are looking fantastically floriferous in your garden, I love the vulgar, crass Kwanzan..

    • Chloris says:

      You love the Pink Knicker tree? Maybe it’ s just me being a cherry blossom snob. But I prefer dainty rather than big and blowsy.

      • Well, stand underneath it and look up – if all you can think of is underwear it won’t work for you! I will say plain Yoshinos are my favorite Cherry. Autumalis a close second.

      • Chloris says:

        I know, I have looked at the lovely pink against a blue sky but still I prefer the daaintier blossom trees, this one is a bit blowsy and suburban.

  8. Pauline says:

    Your garden is truly a delight, it is looking beautiful with all its wonderful flowers. I am envious of your lovely Magnolias, they must be wonderful to see together.

  9. Kris P says:

    You have too many flowers that spark envy! That black tulip is drool-worthy, as it the peony, and every spring has me swooning for the pretty Epimediums I see blooming in the UK and Pacific Northwest. However, the blooms are plentiful here too – just different – and I echo the cry for the garden to slow down and give me time to fully enjoy it.

    • Chloris says:

      Your garden is always so crammed with gorgeous blooms but as you say, many of them are different and make me envious. We always want to grow things that we can’ t have, even when there are so many beautiful things that we can grow.

  10. You have so many things blooming in so many colors and shapes at the same time! I really enjoyed your mosaic of Epimediums. I have a few, too, and they’re such joyful little fairy wings. Happy Bloom Day!

  11. Cathy says:

    All those different magnolias and epimediums – the joys of having a big(gish) garden… 😊 The quote from Rilke is so apt – our gardens are a real cacophany in April, or maybe more of a choral symphony. Your garden has so many interesting things, as we would expect from a plantsperson like yourself – enjoy your ramblings!

    • Chloris says:

      I do love having plenty of space, the downside of a big( gish) garden to indulge my plant obsession, is that I never catch up; there are always areas crying out for attention.

      • Cathy says:

        There’s invariably an ‘ish’ when it comes to gardeners and the size of their gardens. I don’t consider mine as ‘big’ and always hesitate when people ask because most of them probably think it is! And it is out in the open now, your ‘plant obsession’… 😉

  12. Sam says:

    Wowser! So many beautiful plants here. I need to check if magnolias cope with alkaline soil – we don’t have one and I’d love one. Epidemics, too…

    • Chloris says:

      Magnolias prefer an acidic soil, but they don’ t get that here. They won’ t stand chalk but otherwise are fine as long as they are well fed.

      • Sam says:

        Oh, sadly our soil is chalky. Maybe I can try one in a big pot and look after it. I’ll investigate. Thanks Liz. Sam x

  13. Bodger says:

    Thank you Chloris, not a shriek but a swell of choral splendour. Perhaps I’m getting the hang of your garden, since although I still feel sick with envy at your umpteen Epimediums, I can now admire your taste and skill. I am resolved to work at my compost heap until I too may grow Magnolias.

    • Chloris says:

      Thank you, yes it is more a choral splendour than a shriek, that is reserved for the weeds that you decapitate. We do have noisy plants.
      Indeed you must grow a magnolia or two, they are the aristocrats of the spring garden.

  14. Brian Skeys says:

    So many beautiful and unusual blooms Chloris. The little pleione is stunning.

    • Chloris says:

      Yes, I love pleiones and they are easy to grow as long as they over winter in the greenhouse, I don’t know why you don’t see them more often.

  15. I feel that I should take notes when I read your posts. Firstly, so I can remember all the thing I want to say about the fabulous selection you grow in your garden. Secondly, so I can copy. But I didn’t, so this time you will have to be content with ….. just wonderful!

  16. pbmgarden says:

    You must be having such fun amidst spring’s flowers. I really like that Bellevalia–something worth a search to find a source here. Have a wonderful week.

  17. rusty duck says:

    Glorious Chloris. I must find Dicentra ‘Valentine’, the foliage is as beautiful as the blooms. And have another go with magnolias!

  18. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Beauty at every turn! Love those magnolias & finally got an Elizabeth of my own. Unfortunately I could only find a small one gallon sized plant. Fortunately, it’ll be easier to site in my tiny garden. Happy belated GBBD!

  19. Quelle magnifique collection de fleurs et d’arbustes fleuris ! C’est beau et impressionnant 🙂 Belle journée(ici, il fait froid mais les lilas et autres arbres en fleurs n’ont heureusement pas souffert de ce coup de froid) Belle journée

  20. snowbird says:

    What a paradise! How I always enjoy seeing what you have blooming! Everything is gorgeous, I’d be screaming stop too!!! How wonderful to have roses and peonies, mine are well behind yours as is my apple blossom. I am lusting after your lovely pleione, that is such a pretty flower, what a delicate shade of violet it is. Oh nooooooo……please keep your cherry tree, like the pianist I think it’s fabulous. xxx

    • Chloris says:

      Thank you Dina. Canary Bird is an April flowering rose and this little species Peony blooms well before the summer ones. My tree peonies have nice plump buds, I hope yours will grow for you.

  21. So many spring delights! I know that feeling of spring rushing past so that one fears it will be gone before it can be appreciated. I love the yellow Magnolia, ‘Elizabeth’.

  22. Wow. Your garden is a delight.

  23. Anna says:

    Your garden is a veritable Aladdin’s cave Chloris. I wish I could see it in the flesh as it were especially at this time of year. It’s the smaller treasures that make my heart beat faster too. I bought dicentra spectablis ‘Valentine’ last weekend from a fabulous nursery in the Lake District. I like the foliage perhaps more than I like the flowers.

  24. Lavinia Ross says:

    Your gardens are beautiful! The little pleione flowers caught my eye though. I love the color.

  25. Dina says:

    What a gorgeous garden! We especially love yor Magolia and Paeonias, but they are all beautiful. Spring has arrived early at your part. At the moment it’s quite chilly in North Norfolk and it’s raining cats and dogs, but we are quite optimistic the flowers will open soon. Have a wonderful weekend!
    Greetings from the Fab Four

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