My initial thought was that I wouldn't be able to find enough blooms in the garden to drum up a halfway respectable post for 'Blogger's Bloom Day', because when I look out of the window, all I can see are tones of brown and green. However, when I went outside armed with the macro lens, I was surprised how much there actually was in bloom. OK, we're not talking armfuls here, just tiny flowers dotted here and there amid the gloom, but enough to photograph.
The star of this (limited cast) show is undoubtably Iris Histrioides, which is totally gorgeous. I saw a photo of one on someone else's blog recently, rushed out and bought 3 for the cool greenhouse, then found a couple growing in the garden, which I had planted in the Autumn and totally forgotten about. Good job I'm not a squirrel - I'd starve!
I love the dark, rich reds of the buds before they open.
This is the palest one I possess and I might do a bit of breeding from this one, later on, when it is ready for pollination.
This Hellebore has very finely cut leaves, and has unusual pale buds and flowers. It stays looking good throughout the year, and is a real favourite of mine for shady places. I think it is Argutifolius, but am happy to be corrected, as I have never been sure what it actually is !
The delicate, bell like flowers of 'Clematis Cirrhosa Wisley Cream' are easy to miss, and look lovely as they blow in the wind.
Clematis Armandii is not far behind, and those flowers should be opening in a few days. I have lost a couple of plants before, as they are tender, and haven't coped with the low temperatures over the last three winters. So far this Winter, there has been little weather cold enough to have a detrimental effect. I can't wait for the flowers to open and fill the air with fragrance.
Not a bloom, but I couldn't resist this photo showing new growth in my summer flowering clematis 'Polish Spirit'.
Most of my Euphorbias have been kickstarted into growth, and this Martinii is no exception. They provide a welcome splash of colour in the winter garden.
You really can't ask for more from a shrub than you get with Viburnam Tinus - healthy evergreen foliage, vigorous growth, nice rounded habit and to cap it all, lovely white perfumed flowers, when very few shrubs are more than a collection of sticks !
The winter Jasmine has been flowering for months already and shows no sign of stopping yet. It is planted near the back door so that we can see it every time we go out. I couldn't have a garden without including it. One of the cheeriest plants there is, it brightens up many a gloomy winter's day.
Not technically blooming yet, but, oh , so close ... These wallflowers will be out soon and I swear I can smell them already!
Early stalwarts, the Snowdrops, are well into their flowering period now, and at their peak.
Apologies for poor focusing this photo, believe it or not, this was actually the best shot I got of these Pulmonaria ! Had to share it because they are newly out, and it is so lovely to greet them again!
Bit of a cheat because I bought these Primulas from the local Garden Centre about 3 weeks ago, and they are in pots. However, they are in bloom, they are in the garden, so I guess they just qualify!
And the good thing about getting low down and dirty with your plants, is that you notice the small harbingers of Spring even sooner than you would otherwise !
So ... Happy Blogger's Bloom day, which takes place on the 15th day of each month, thanks to the hard work of ' May Dreams Gardens'