Mary, Mary, quite contrary
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells and cockleshells…
Contrarian or not, there are many gardeners and non-gardeners alike who would find that any gardens grow exquisitely fine if they include Carolina Silverbell, Halesia tetraptera. This mid-size tree, 30-40-feet tall (occasionally up to 80-feet) is native from West Virginia to Florida and west to Oklahoma. When in flower later in the month of May, these trees are often profusely bejeweled with dangling white, ½ to ¾-inch, bell-shaped flowers, beginning just before the trees leaf out and lasting for perhaps two weeks. The effect of viewing a good-sized, leafless tree covered with white flowers often stops visitors mid-stride. An ensuing curious effect occurs as the wilting flowers fall within the canopy envelope creating a snow-like appearance surrounding the base of the tree’s trunk. (more…)
Mount Auburn’s landscape is composed of a diverse array of plants and trees that come into bloom at different times and in different seasons. See both a calendar and a list view of What’s in Bloom below:
What’s in Bloom: Week of April 16, 2018
Lenten rose, Helleborus ‘Pink Lady’, several locations
Lenten rose, Helleborus ‘White Lady’, several locations
Cornelian cherry, Cornus mas, many locations
Japanese cornel, Cornus officinalis ‘Kintoki’, Azalea Path
White forsythia, Abeliophyllum distichum, Central Ave.
Forsythia, Forsythia sp., many locations
Japanese andromeda, Pieris japonica, many locations
Red maple, Acer rubrum, many locations
Dawn viburnum, Viburnum x bodnantense ‘Dawn’, Story Chapel
Squill, Scilla siberica, many locations
Crocus, Crocus sp., several locations
Striped squill, Puschkinia scilloides, Magnolia Ave.
Winter aconite, Eranthis hyemalis, Chestnut Ave., Birch Garden
Glory-in-the-snow, Chionodoxa luciliae, several locations
Pansies, Viola sp., several locations
Daffodil, Narcissus sp., several locations
Tulip, Tulipa sp., several locations
Korean Rhododendron, Rhododendron mucronulatum, several locations
Merrill magnolia, Magnolia x loebneri ‘Merrill’, Spruce Ave.
Snowdrops, Galanthus nivalis, Fountain Ave.
Anemone, Anemone sp., @Sphinx
Creeping myrtle, Vinca minor, many locations
Japanese spurge, Pachysandra terminalis, Story Chapel
Winter hazel, Corylopsis spicata, Pheasant Path
Mount Auburn Rap by Maria Lindberg
The squill is a thrill
Chionodoxa really rocks ya
Pansies and crocus bring it all into focus
Spice bush and lilacs delight the senses
Ivy twines around cast iron fences
Vinca hosta azealea silverbell
Escort the traveler on the way to the Dell
Orioles flit from spruce to beech
Hawks fly above with a warning screech
Turtles and bullfrogs and muskrats abound
Owls in their nests make nary a sound
Kingfishers herons and cormorants as well
Robins and phoebes have a story to tell
The Metasequoia of Auburn Lake
A perch for hawks and a migratory break
For warblers in May luring birders far and wide
Wonder and song are the gifts they provide
The American elm and the mighty oak
Guard the eternal sleep of the silent folk
Of Mount Auburn Cemetery
If you see a tree or plant in bloom that is not on this list, please leave a comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
…Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for ambition,
But some days I’d rather steep in my own kettle.
Give me chamomile, cowboys, cornelian cherries.
Let me sink, once again, into purposeless sleep.
After enduring a full month of March that was more often like a lion than a lamb, let us welcome the flowers of April. Sprightly, lightening our landscape in early April are the golden haze of flowers of the Corneliancherry dogwood, Cornus mas. Plants’ common names versus their Latin names may occasionally produce mini-conundrums, red cedar (Juniperus virginiana) is not a cedar (Cedrus), mountainash (Sorbus) is not an ash (Fraxinus), blue beech (Carpinus) is not a beech (Fagus), tulip poplar (Liriodendron) is not a poplar (Populus), etc.
Corneliancherry dogwood is not a cherry (Prunus), not even in the same botanical family as cherries, Rosaceae, the rose family. Rather this is a less well-known species of dogwood, in the genus Cornus. This genus with at least 30 species is more often known for two of its showy ornamentals, our native flowering dogwood and the summer blooming kousa dogwood. (more…)
Let us whir with the golden spoke-wheels
Of the sun.
For tomorrow Winter drops into the waste-basket,
And the calendar calls it March.
– Amy Lowell (Lot # 3401 Bellwort Path)
The scientific definition of the beginning of spring occurs with the vernal equinox (March 20). But, locally, we have experienced snowfall on the running of five Boston Marathons (1907, 1908, 1925, 1961, and 1967) and two Boston Red Sox games in Fenway Park were snowed out on April 8th and 10th in 1996. Boston had a half-inch of snow on May 10, 1977. This year, we place great hope in Lowell’s poetic weather prognostication. For many of us, the lovely sights of the first flowers opening from bulbs are our own “signs of spring”. Flowering bulbs, corms, and tubers, which are modified perennial, herbaceous plants, are currently, or soon will be, offering spring delights for many visitors, in numerous locations, throughout our landscape. (more…)