3.4.12

Spring blooms in da 'hood


Blue hyacinths in bloom by garden muses: a Toronto gardening blog
A little early this year but reminds me of Easter
Living in the concrete jungle that makes up my Toronto neighbourhood, I'm always looking for bursts of colour amid the urban chaos. There's so little green space around that I appreciate any effort to add colour. 

These spring bloomers are strutting their stuff across my house in the condo's front gardens. They are rather large beds for downtown and are filled with an eclectic mix of perennials and shrubs. 


Pink hyacinth in bloom by garden muses: a Toronto gardening blog
Cluster of florets more like a ball than a cone
Maybe "eclectic" is the wrong word. The plants are typically found at big box stores. I am grateful that the whole area wasn't carpet-bombed with euonymus but since there's no strong design in the planting, I get an uneasy feeling. The beds suffer from "one plant-itis" in which one type of bulb/perennial, etc. is planted here, the same variety planted over there, and another one tucked in here. Without the massing, things look disjointed and "polka-dotty"! These hyacinths, for example, were placed one at each corner of the rectangular space! For the love of Pete, why?!

I suppose 99% of people walking by just appreciate the colour or ignore it and that's fine. But this design error distracts me all the time. (This will be a topic of another post!) I am certain that you, kind reader, don't commit such an egregious error in your gardens, lol!

The next photos were taken at the Paul Kane House gardens nearby. I profiled the flower beds in June 2011 in a post titled "Don't fence me in! (or "scared straight," horticulturally)" and noted that the plantings were "guarded" by a silly metal grate-like contraption. Well, such protection is mercifully missing this year. Would such a thing occur at Sissinghurst?!



Yellow daffodils in bloom at Paul Kane House gardens by garden muses: a Toronto gardening blog
Bright, cheerful, yellow daffodils

Miniature yellow daffodils in bloom at Paul Kane House gardens by garden muses: a Toronto gardening blog
Miniature daffodils with emerging poppy leaves

White daffodils in bloom at Paul Kane House gardens by garden muses: a Toronto gardening blog
A little overexposed but you get the idea


Blooming star magnolia magnolia stellata at Paul Kane House gardens by garden muses: a Toronto gardening blog
Magnolia stellata: She's a star for a few weeks but what a diva!
I couldn't get a closeup on the Star magnolia flowers but this gal seems to have weathered  well the few nights of frost we had last week. Since we are 2-3 weeks early, bloom/bud-wise, this year and it's only the beginning of April, I suppose a hard frost could occur.

I mean, come on, it has snowed in April before!


By Paul Jung, author of "garden muses: a Toronto gardening blog"
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