I've had these shots saved for a while because I wanted to write a post showing the emergence and development of some of the Hyacinths we have along the Woodland Walk, seen in this recent post.
In fact, you might well recognize those in the first shot, displaying them in full glorious bloom, as this is a 'behind the scenes view' of those in the post just cited. (This was taken on 26 April, 2008 by Fernymoss.)
I took the second and third ones on about 16 April as they further developed and prepared to bloom, and here you can see the true colors start to develop in these two specimens of Peter Stuyvesant and Jan de Bos.
And, finally, a first glimpse of the bloom stalk as it began to take form (taken about 9 April, I think?) shortly after the plant's emergence. At this early stage, Hyacinths always remind me of those Alien pods they first find on the original planet ... you know, the ones that just open up, leap and grab you ... It's probably unfair of me to ascribe such a sinister comparison to such a lovely, fragrant flower, but somehow they bring that imagery to mind! Never to fear, I've yet to be attacked by a Hyacinth, and I'm sure there are no such documented events ...
As for a general Casa IVG update, the last week has witnessed a lot of action in the floral world surrounding us ... lots of the perennials are up ... Columbines growing rapidly, the Bleeding Hearts are starting to bloom, the Trilliums are getting ready to do their thing, and we've even got a few Toad Lilies already up, though they are a long way from blooming at this point (think, late September for them!). There are also a lot of others up, too numerous to list, as well as seedlings of some of our now naturalized annuals, such as the Calendula, 'Imagination Verbena,' the Bells of Ireland and even more I'm sure I haven't noticed yet.
Oh yeah, and the annual lawn carpet of Dandelions is on its way to getting into full swing ... as I've probably said before, we really don't mind them at all, though I draw the line at them taking over in the perennial beds! They're actually quite beneficial plants in certain areas of the lawn and garden because they perform a useful function in terms of keeping the ground aerated and nourished, and as most of you probably know, they also can serve as a food source, using the young greens in salads or frying up the tender new blooms in a skillet. Fernymoss tells me that even the roots can be used as a coffee substitute (much like chicory, I suppose) when they are roasted slowly. And, after all, a whole mass of Dandelions is just plain pretty ... so if you don't have any other flowers coming up naturally, you should at least let these have their moment in the sun!