Blooming at the start of March

In recent days I’ve seen magnolias blooming in the area, with most of the flowers damaged by frost so that the edges are brown. It’s not particularly unusual for these to be flowering in early March, just as the damage is typical. By good fortune rather than good planning, I planted ‘Royal Star’, ‘Jane’, and ‘Dr. Merrill’ magnolias at the partially shaded forest’s edge that borders the property, and with only filtered late winter sun the blooms are at least a week away. Then, they are less likely to be injured by cold nights that are fairly certain to occur through March.

There have been a variety of blooms in the garden through January and February, but most are flowers that are tolerant of sub-freezing temperatures so that they are not damaged. The exception is ‘Winter’s Interlude’ camellia (above) that is supposed to flower in November, but almost never does in my garden. In recent years the fat buds have refused to bloom at all, but with consistently warm winter weather the flowers began to open late in January and have continued into early March. Now, the blooms are less likely to be frost damaged, though there’s still a bit of brown along the edges.

Finally, there are daffodils! They’re everywhere, but until a few days ago there were none blooming in my garden. The miniatures seem always to be the first to flower, and long ago I forgot which ones are ‘Tete-a-Tete’ (above) and which are ‘February Gold’. One is blooming now, and the other (that I usually refer to as ‘February Gold’) is at least a week away. I’m certain there are differences to distinguish one from the other, but I haven’t been concerned enough to do the research.

There are a few large flowered daffodils blooming now (above), but most are still in bud (below) and probably a week from opening. I don’t have a clue what the varieties are because I haven’t really cared. I want some short ones, some tall, mostly early varieties, and a couple that will extend the season. I’ve picked some yellows, whites, and others with a bit of each. I don’t think I’ve planted any orange daffodils, but maybe I don’t remember and I’ll see them next week. I suppose I should have kept notes recording what’s what, but I didn’t, and there are so many varieties that I’m certain that it’s hopeless to try to figure it out now.

But, I enjoy these late winter flowers no matter that I don’t know their proper names. I regularly forget peoples’ names, but this in no way diminishes that they are wonderful individuals, and that I enjoy their company (though in small doses since I seem to enjoy being around plants more than people).

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