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Sometimes April Is the Sweetest Month: GBBD, April 2011

April 15, 2011

My Gettysburg garden in April (photo credit: Jean Potuchek) Last year, when I spent the winter in Maine, March was unusually warm and spring came early (see Spring Blooms! GBBD, April 2010). This year, March was much colder than average and spring has been late arriving, with the result that my zone 6b Gettysburg garden is about at the same stage as my much further north Maine garden was last year at this time.

But although it has been late getting here, spring has truly arrived, and its arrival has been all the sweeter for the delay. In typical April fashion, we have been experiencing days of rain, when buds get fat and the grass gets visibly greener, followed by warm sunny days when flowers burst into bloom. My walks to work have been getting longer as I dawdle to peer at gardens along the way and to enjoy the bountiful and beautiful flowering fruit and magnolia trees. Yesterday was a bright, sunny day, and when I finally arrived at work, I couldn’t bring myself to go inside. I bypassed the front door of my building, choosing to stay outside a few extra minutes as I walked around to the back. Along the way, I encountered a co-worker who was due at a meeting in the same building. We stood together for a minute, soaking up the sunshine, exclaiming over the fine weather, and savoring the sight of clouds of pink and white blossoms on campus trees. Then we both turned, sighed audibly, and went inside to do the work for which we get paid.

It is not just campus plantings and other people’s gardens that I am enjoying; the sweetness of spring is also happening in my own garden. The forsythia that was just beginning to bloom a month ago has held on for a long time in the cool weather. It is  beginning to drop its blossoms, but is still providing a bright, cheerful backdrop for the yellow blooms of daffodils and the pink and blue flowers of hyacinths. Gettysburg forsythia in April (photo credit: Jean Potuchek)
Daffodils in my Gettysburg garden (photo credit: Jean Potuchek) Daffodils (Narcissus) are blooming in both the small circle beside the patio and in the larger back flower bed.
I had forgotten about the little Tête-à-Tête daffodils that a friend gave me two years ago for the American Cancer Society’s Daffodil Days, so their appearance in the stone circle was a lovely surprise. Tete-a-Tete daffodils in Gettysburg (photo credit: Jean Potuchek)

The hyacinths, in various shades of pink and blue, were all initially bought as potted forced bulbs and later planted in the garden, where they continue to bring me joy each spring.

Pink hyacinth (photo credit: Jean Potuchek) Blue hyacinths (photo credit: Jean Potuchek)

pulmonaria flowers The front flower bed has less going on because there are no flowering bulbs planted here. But who could fail to be charmed by the pink-into-blue spring flowers of Pulmonaria (lungwort)?

Sweetest of all is the appearance every day of still more foliage and buds, with their promise of what is to come.

Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day is hosted on the 15th of each month by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Visit her blog to find out what’s in bloom this month in gardens around the world.

15 Comments leave one →
  1. April 15, 2011 5:47 pm

    Plenty of zingy Spring colour there! I love it when I find bulbs I had forgotten planting popping up. I love the Spring blossom even more – walking to the allotment today I nearly gave myself whiplash trying to take it all in.

  2. April 15, 2011 5:52 pm

    What a stunning combination your daffodils and hyacinth’s make! I love this time of year as well.

  3. April 15, 2011 5:53 pm

    Hyacinths I mean (proof-read, Diane!)

  4. April 15, 2011 5:55 pm

    Lots of spring favorites in your post today. Happy Bloom Day. We’re expecting storms.

  5. April 15, 2011 7:59 pm

    That forsythia is breath-taking. And this is the second blog I’ve seen with beautiful pictures of lungwort – I’m going to have seriously consider that plant for my garden!

  6. April 15, 2011 9:10 pm

    Jean, I am really loving our PA spring this year with its cool rainy days (I am in the distinct minority!). The only flowers that have really gone by are the snowdrops. Everything else is beautiful, and I could glory in it forever. See you on Sunday. Carolyn

  7. April 15, 2011 11:29 pm

    Lovely! My mother had a forsythia, and seeing photos always reminds me of her. Thanks for sharing, and happy bloom day!

  8. April 16, 2011 10:18 am

    That forsythia is a stunner…I only hope to ever get mine to bloom like that…and then the hyacinths …the colors are gorgeous…I love your garden in early spring and look forward to seeing it move through the seasons. Happy GBBD

  9. April 16, 2011 10:38 am

    Jean, I love that you walk to work and get to enjoy gardens along the way. It’s so nice this time of year to get outside and soak up all the sunshine we’ve been missing for so many months.

  10. April 16, 2011 10:46 am

    Spring arrived late here too, but the advantage is that it seems the garden holds its breath so long, that once the weather warms, everything explodes into bloom in unison. Your garden clearly has. The forsythia is beautiful, and brings back fond memories of the one in my childhood garden. The pulmonaria is lovely too. I especially love the splashed leaves and the variety in the color of the blooms.

  11. patientgardener permalink
    April 16, 2011 4:16 pm

    Lots of lovely spring colour. This year is definitely much earlier than last year here in the UK, the weather certinaly keeps us on our toes!

  12. April 19, 2011 6:01 pm

    Enjoyed seeing your beautiful daffodils, forsythia & pulmonaria. I have a deep blue pulmonaria blooming now but the leaves are not speckled. For some reason I never loved the speckled look, but yours do look so pretty. I planted mine in front of bleeding heart.
    My daughter (back to our original communication) only spent a year at Gettysburg and graduated from Trinity ’04. My son loved his four years at Gettysburg. He was a Captain of the lacrosse team, graduating in 2002. We still miss our many many visits to Gettysburg to watch the games and tail gate with the team and the parents. ANd as I said, I started every visit with a stop to the Walmart parking lot to see the plants! Wish we had blogs back then…I could have found better garden sources in Gettysburg. Happy Spring!

  13. April 21, 2011 8:24 am

    Lovely post. I really enjoyed your pictures

  14. April 21, 2011 9:57 am

    Ahhh, Jean, as a fellow New Englander and an April 15 birthdayer, I enjoyed your April piece mightily. For its close-to-homeness, yes, but also for its passion and spirit and connection to the earth – qualities you demonstrate throughout your blog.

    I’m happy I discovered you.

    Happy spring (at last),

  15. April 21, 2011 6:22 pm

    Wow. I need to get some bulbs. My garden is really a summer affair, and whenever I see pictures like these I feel some regret…

    Anyhow, thanks again for the Earth Day Reading Project invite. My post in up today.

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