Spring lasted for 2 days!

Spring was lovely while it lasted, all of 2 days! What a difference it made, to be able to garden without a jacket, feeling the warm sunshine on your back with the birds singing away proclaiming their territory and the frogs doing what frogs do at this time of year in the pond !



The next day we had twice as much frogspawn and a single frog was left quietly keeping guard (dark blob, top left) not like last year when they arrived late February and made such a noise croaking each time we passed.


The hellebores just seem to be getting better and better, such a delight to see the sunshine on them instead of the continuous dull weather we have had for so long now.


Crocus open at last for any passing bee, have heard a few buzzing round the woodland and in the greenhouse.


Snowdrops get better and better as each day goes by with more opening all the time.

Rheum palmatum

Rheum palmatum has stirred from its slumbers in the bog garden and is beginning to grow into what will become the most fantastic leaves.

Primula denticulata

Also bestirring itself in the bog garden is Primula denticulata. This is the first primula to flower in the bog garden and once they start, the others can’t be far behind. I must get a move on and tidy this border ready for the explosion of all the different primulas which will flower over the next few months.


In the veggie garden, the rhubarb has started growing and we are looking forward to picking it already!

Corydalis Beth Evans

The first of our Corydalis to flower is Beth Evans, she looks lovely nestling among the snowdrops, the others will follow soon, but for some reason she is always first.

Narcissus pseudonarcissus

More and more narcissus are opening each day, soon the predominant colour in the woodland will be shades of yellow and not the white of the snowdrops.


The Chaenomeles by the back door is flowering non stop now that warmer weather has arrived, it started last November and there have always been a few flowers out since then.

Hellebore and paeony

The colours on the back of the hellebore petals match the new shoots of Paeonia mlokosewitschii which are just emerging from behind the hellebore. This hellebore has cream on the inside of the petals.


Ypsilandra needs its old leaves tidying up so that it can look presentable, its rather a strange plant, but I like the flowers and its strange name!


My first cowslip in flower, the first of many in the drift that we now have to the right of the bog garden.

Tete a Tete

There’s now lots more yellow in the garden, now that Narcissus Tete a Tete has started opening, they are such lovely little bulbs looking as if a patch of sunlight has dropped to the ground even when it is dull like today.


The wild pulmonaria is flowering everywhere, they seed around with gay abandon and I have to remove quite a number each year, but always  leave a good number as it is a favourite of the bumble bees!

Cardamine pratensis

Cardamine pratensis or Cuckoo Flower or Ladies Smock, whatever you want to call it, with the mauve flower, is thoroughly at home in the woodland and is spreading nicely forming good ground cover. I must take some pieces off and plant them in different parts of the woodland as this is the larval food for the Orange Tip butterfly.

Euphorbia Blackbird

Euphorbia Blackbird just gets better and better every time I look at it, once again, must make more of this as I think it will contrast nicely with ferns, hostas and heucheras in the woodland.

Galanthus Baxendales Late

As you can see from the label, this snowdrop is called Baxendales Late. This is usually my last snowdrop to open and will last until the end of March or even into April when there are lots of other flowers to take over from all the snowdrops that have been keeping me happy from Christmas onwards!


Looking back from the bridge over the ditch, the sides of the ditch have quite a lot of planting on them, the flowers of Euphorbia robbiae are just starting to open, but I will have to watch it as it has a tendency to run!


The new Hamamellis intermedia Diane has been planted, on the left, we now just have to wait for it to grow and look like a burning bush with the sunlight behind it.

Snowdrop hill

This is what I am calling Snowdrop Hill at the far left hand of the woodland where the ground rises to form the Devon Bank boundary. It’s also where I have been planting my new special snowdrops, they look a bit forlorn at the moment but in a few years should have increased nicely, well I hope so anyway!  I think I will also plant some hostas, ferns and heucheras for interest in the summer when it is shady with all the leaves on the trees.


I think it is obvious that this is my favourite part of the garden at the moment, soon my fickle heart will be drooling over the snakeshead fritillaries which are in the bottom right hand corner looking just like untidy grass, but for now I am content with watching all the snowdrops opening, there are still a few specials which flower towards the end of March. Our two days of spring certainly made a difference to the garden and to me! I have just seen the lunchtime weather forecast and they are predicting snow for Devon next week-help!!


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22 Responses to Spring lasted for 2 days!

  1. Cathy says:

    You may well drool, Pauline – there is so much to be joyful about there. Even at the height of garden colour in May and June I know that this is my most joyous time of year and my woodland and woodland edge borders are the most satisfying parts of the garden at all times. The two hellebores you feature are so beautiful – are they named? And what conditions does the Ypsilandra need?

    • Pauline says:

      It’s lovely Cathy to find someone else who understands my obsession! My hellebores are all bought as Helleborus hybridus so no special names I’m afraid, the big pink double one is about 10 yrs old and the small maroon/cream double one is only about 3 yrs old. The Ypsilandra is a shade loving plant bought from Long Acre plants I think, they specialise in plants for shade, it is also in a rather wet spot and seems ok so far in the 3 yrs that I have had it.

  2. Sue Berger says:

    Lovely plants, lovely blog. I’ve only just found you.

  3. Christina says:

    Your wood land is wonderful, interesting that your rhubarb is ahead of mine, you can barely see it poking through the soil. You have given me an idea of a shrub that might just flower during winter for me, chaenomeles could be the one! Your forecast is also the same as ours snow next week! I do hope not. Christina

    • Pauline says:

      Two of our rhubarbs are up nicely Christina, getting bigger every day, but one is only just breaking the surface today. The Chaenomeles that we have was already here when we moved here, so unfortunately I don’t know which variety it is, we have another, Apple Blossom, but that only flowers in the spring, unlike the salmon one which flowers on and off all winter. Hope our forecasters have got their weather wrong for next week!

  4. Anna says:

    Well that’s one more day than it lasted here Pauline 🙂 Tuesday’s sunshine was much appreciated by me although I would have liked more. I’m off eastwards again on Sunday so will no doubt then feel those winds blowing in from Russia. ‘Beth Evans’ looks a most pretty and demure maid – I’m going to look out for her now after seeing your photo.

    • Pauline says:

      It was lovely while it lasted, wasn’t it Anna, we have just been out this evening and it is thick fog!! Take care on your trip to the east, the weather is taking a turn for the worse again, hope you find your Mum is ok. Beth Evans is a lovely corydalis, I can recommend her, I think she is the only pink I have in the woodland at the moment so she stands out amongst the snowdrops.

  5. There is a lot to drool over there… I bought two rhubarb crowns in the autumn and they are showing signs of life so give me a couple of years and I will be making rhubarb crumble. I also planted the first snowdrops in the garden, hopefully one day they will make clumps as impressive as yours. I am envious of your frog spawn, we haven’t worked out what to do about a pond here yet.

    • Pauline says:

      Our third rhubarb has just popped up this morning Janet, so already we are thinking crumbles, then fools for the summer – delicious!
      Your snowdrops will soon increase and you will be having to split them sooner than you think.
      We do love our pond and all the wildlife it attracts. When our grandsons go pond dipping they find newts, water boatmen and lots of shrimp like creatures. We can do without the grass snake which likes to feed on the tadpoles, we have seen one a few times. One year we were lucky enough to see a dragonfly larva climb up an iris leaf and then slowly emerge as a wonderful dragonfly, dry its wings, then fly away.

  6. pbmgarden says:

    Pauline, your woodland flowers are so delightful. Glad you had a couple of sunny days for enjoying being outside. Love the photo of the crocus–they’re also starting to pop up around my neighborhood, although unfortunately I don’t grow them. I enjoy learning about plants from you–the Ypsilandra, Cardamine pratensis and several other things here are all new to me.

    • Pauline says:

      The crocus Susie, were soon buzzing with bees that had been wakened by the sunshine, they are seeding around now making more, which is wonderful, I do like free plants! I think Cardamine pratensis is one of our wild flowers but I am very happy to have it in the woodland, the flowers are lovely and even the leaves are prettily divided. By July it has all died back and remains dormant until next February. Ypsilandra, what a lovely name, can’t tell you much about it, non of my books seem to mention it, but I bought it from a nursery that just deals with plants for shade and moist areas and I thought the unusual flower matched the name!!

  7. You’re way ahead of me, Pauline. Your garden is looking lovely – I can’t believe you already have cowslips in flower! And thanks for the reminder that I must move my new rheums from the holding beds – I’m rather excited about growing them for the first time. During our few days of ‘spring’ I did manage to mow all the lawns – just before the return of forecast snow! Sheesh. Dave

    • Pauline says:

      Hi Dave, poor you having more snow, we have some very wet sleet today, hope it doesn’t turn into the wet stuff! The rheum has such fantastic foliage, only room for one here, but it contrasts nicely with the fern and iris leaves, will look forward to seeing photos of yours when they grow! There are so many flowers out at the moment, the garden thinks spring has arrived, just hope they don’t all get buried with snow!

  8. Great post Pauline – love your hellebores.

    • Pauline says:

      Thanks Catherine, the hellebores just get better and better, even though some of their individual flowers are past their best, more buds are opening all the time. They really are amazing plants to have for the winter months when not much else is flowering, but they still stand out now that they are joined by lots of others.

  9. wellywoman says:

    You’ve always got so much of interest in your garden. It’s such a treat to see. The incessant dullness has been awful hasn’t it. We’ve had some nice sunshine today it’s just a pity it’s so bitterly cold. Hoping you haven’t got any snow, we’re off down to Cornwall tomorrow for a few days. We’re packing our winter woollies. 🙂

    • Pauline says:

      No sunshine for us WW, just a few snow flurries and arctic winds! Seriously though, I have just watched the local weather for you and it will be the same tomorrow, but with a bit of sunshine in the morning. Wednesday , it starts to get a tiny bit warmer, again Thursday but by Friday the warmer weather is coming from the west and that means rain! I think maybe thermals, waterproofs and skis may be in order!!

  10. Angie says:

    Found your Blog whilst looking for inspiration for primulas. What a great find and super blog. Your garden is beautiful.
    I’m off now for a good look around!

    • Pauline says:

      Angie, so glad you found me, lovely to hear from someone new! Primulas are a passion of mine, especially the candelabra primulas which I have been growing from seed for the bog garden, such a lovely family! Will now pop over to your blog for a look at yours!

  11. debsgarden says:

    I feel your frustration. I was off work today and had great plans for my garden, but the weather turned cold and rainy again! But the plants don’t seem to mind. Hang in there! Your gorgeous garden is teeming with life, and soon spring will be in full force with no thoughts of winter until sometime next fall!

    • Pauline says:

      We have all had snow now Debs with icy gales, the daffodils are now lying down on the soil looking very miserable. The wind chill yesterday, we were told, made it seem like -9degrees, poor plants! Will have to wrap up when I’ve had my breakfast and go and see what the damage is like further into the garden, roll on spring!

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