Sunday, March 13, 2011

First Roses & Other Spring Things

First Mutabilis blossom

We're starting to see the first roses of the season: two Chinas and a Polyantha, which makes sense (Chinas being one of the more rugged and floriferous classes of roses for Texas).

Our 'Mutabilis' hedge is looking incredibly dense and leafy and vigorous, and it's sporting one of the season's first blooms.

'Climbing Old Blush' bloomed heavily last spring and only indifferently after that, which is a bit unusual for this cultivar. I think a lot of roses bloomed so hard last spring that they wore themselves out and had to take the summer off. I'm not sure if I should be encouraged or not by the 5 or 6 blossoms COB is already sporting this March. Pace yourself, old thing. You don't want to fizzle in June.

The dense foliage and precocious flowers of 'Climbing Old Blush.'

And 'La Marne' has produced its first two flowers. LM ended up in our garden in some happenstancical way, and even though it's a doughty and productive rose, I can't seem to fall in love with it. The color, the flower shape, the flower size--it's all kind of meh. Still. Flowers are a nice thing. So carry on.

I do not love all my children equally. The neglected polyantha 'La Marne.'

Our trees are a good bit more cautious than our roses. Sophora affinis, X Chitalpa taskentensis, and Quercus polymorpha are all leafing out, but the others are either just at the swollen bud stage or else slumber on. Our s....l....o....w.... growing Ginkgo biloba has endearingly snubby little fat buds that are just starting to green up.

The fat little buds of the Ginkgo biloba

And our crinum are leafing out. They all appear to have survived the freezes: the 'Peachblow', 'Pink Parfait', and (oh, I always forget her name--Pauline Something, maybe?) that Matt gave me for Christmas, all the C. macowannii seedlings scattered around, the C. jagus and C. jagus scillifolia, the tentatively identified C. digweedii, the two red scabrums, the C. powelliis--white and pink--and the many 'Ellen Bosanquets' we have about the yard. The C. powelliis by the study door sort of glued themselves together to the top during our last freeze and I never cleaned them up; now their leaves are weirdly conjoined at the tips.

Crinum powelliis with their leaves glued together

And lastly, a perverse sort of a sign of spring, all the nasty old ligustrums that suffered freeze damage this winter are cutting their losses and dropping their necrotic leaves. I think the pattern of colors on this one is really rather pretty.

A dying ligustrum leaf


Caroline said...

Your Mutabilis blossom is lovely. I have three roses blooming so far: 'La Marne', 'Lady Banks' and 'Old Blush.' I have buds on the Mutabilis but no buds yet on 'The Fairy,' 'Buff Beauty' or 'Dame du Coeur.'

Elgin_house said...

Thanks, Caroline! I just saw some beautiful yellow banksias in SE Austin Saturday--giant 8'+ mounds covered in tiny butter-colored roses. Just gorgeous.

Good luck with your tomatoes, btw.

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