It’s Rhododendron time. This is R. oreotrephes, a dainty, small-leaved variety with pale lavender flowers.
I like to show the Rhodies in bud and in flower, because the color is usually more intense in the bud form. This one is called ‘Misty Moonlight’.
Having said that, ‘Markeeta’s Prize’ is red from start to finish. I haven’t had the best of luck with red Rhodies, but this one seems to be bucking that trend. There are some excellent gardens where you can see Rhododendrons in all their glory. Two that come to mind are the Cecil & Molly Smith Garden in St Paul OR and the Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden in Milwaukie OR. Both are great sources of inspiration for companion plantings.
Always the first of the Irises to bloom is this short, deep purple one. You can see the full chorus of these little guys waiting in the wings.
The flowers on Epimedium ‘Lilafree’ are so dainty that they almost disappear. Worth the trouble to get down there for a frog’s eye view, though.
Weed? Wildflower? It’s a beauty, whatever it is. Any ideas?
Here’s another little weed that I prefer to think of as a groundcover. It rambles everywhere, so why fight it?
Speaking of ground covers, Ajuga ‘Black Scallop’ is one of the more satisfying ones. It is currently a sea of blue, but just as attractive when not in bloom.
I could easily go on and on, but instead I’ll leave you with the blooming redbud and pass you on to May Dreams Gardens, where Carol hosts Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day on the 15th of each month. Happy Spring!
Love your little Iris, my dwarf one is flowering two, I’m not such a fan of the Rhodos but where they are the right plant for the conditions, they work well if consideration is paid to the colour combinations, often it isn’t! They must be perfect in your woodland.
Christina~We choose our Rhodies more for leaf form. The bloom cycle is short. So far, we have been lucky with the colors.
and what a delightful edition it has been Ricki 🙂
What pretty weeds you have and sorry can’t help with the id for that pretty purple ‘wildflower’but thought the flower looked pretty much like those from mimulus.
Angie~You’re right about the form of the purple flower. Maybe I can use that to find an ID. In the meantime, I’ll just enjoy it…maybe that’s a better approach anyway.
Beautiful April! I especially like your Ajuga sea of blue!
Peter~After its sea of blue act, it will become a sea of mahogany, which I like just as much.
Oh, your Redbud is blooming! Heaven! I noticed today that things are emerging and blooming at breakneck speed now. It seems early, but it sure is beautiful! Happy GBBD!
Beth~Hard to keep up…something new every day. Not complaining, mind you.
Hi Ricki: You won the oriole feeder drawing! Congratulations! Please let me know if you’d like it and where to send it. You can email me at plantpostings[at]gmail[dot]com. Cheers!
Beth~Zowie! I’m thrilled. Off to email you right now.
I’ve seen that little blue weed on my walks. I wish it would seed itself in my garden .
Linda~A shovelful is yours for the asking.
Happy GBBD! Your weed looks a bit like ground ivy/Glechoma hederacea. I love how redbud flowers before the leaves, all over the branches.
Alison~Thanks for the ID. Yes, the odd blooming pattern of the redbud is intriguing.
Love that inky blue iris.
If you like little irises, have you ever considered Iris cristata? I have officially designated the wild violets in the back garden as wildflowers and not weeds, by the power vested in my by my subscription to Fine Gardening.
Jason~I have slowly been expanding my iris “collection”, having started with the tall beardeds. I will look into cristata…thanks for the tip. Several weeds around here are too pretty to banish but oh, those buttercups: who knew villians could be so charming?
Rhodies struggle here but I wish they were easier to grow. I really love them. Your cute weed looks like a violet. :o)
Tammy~We tend to take the Rhodys for granted here. Isn’t that always the way with the things that grow so easily for us?
Beautiful blooms. I’m a big fan of irises and just had my first year of them – what a lovely flower that seems to keep on giving.
They are low maintenance and increase nicely. I’m adding new ones almost every year.