A lot happens in May, the yard no longer looks empty and blooms are in full effect. This month is all about pink and purple flowers. Tulips, Lilacs, Geraniums, Alliums, Sage Flowers, Violets, Bleeding Hearts, and Peonies galore.
The earliest flowers to arrive are the Tulips, they generally come out at the end of April and stick around for a few weeks into May. We only have one variety of Tulip in our yard, it’s standard in a deep purple burgundy color. They’re so pretty. They’ve been in the yard since I moved in and while there are still many, they are more scattered around and not quite as many as there were 6 years ago.
Next up are the Lilacs, a favorite flower of many for their amazingly fragrant clustered blooms. A lot of people I know associate this flower with their Mothers. Not only does it often bloom around Mother’s Day, it also happens to be right near my Mom’s birthday as well. I suppose with a flower so sweet and nostalgic, it’s only natural that it would remind many of their Mothers. Definitely one of my personal favorites flowers in May.
Next up – the Bleeding Hearts (Lamprocapnos spectabilis)! What a fantastic plant this is, the Bleeding Heart blooms in early May. The flowers are generally pink and/or white forming an arch of heart shaped flowers each one more mature than the next. Lovely arches of heart-shaped flower drops.
Let’s not forget about the Alliums! There are many varieties of Alliums, I have no idea which variety these are, but they’ve been in the yard for ages and they keep coming back. Even though these ones are kind of sad and sparse for an allium, they are still totally magnificent. Tiny little flowers burst from the bud to create a nearly perfect sphere of a bloom. I love to see Alliums popping up all over the city.
The Geranium sanguineum is a hearty plant that creates somewhat of a bushy ground cover. I transplanted some around the yard last year and I’m happy to report that they returned this spring looking really healthy and full. Lots of pink flowers with deep green foliage, looks good!
Below are the Balloon Flowers, a spiky like leaf that grows in tight clusters eventually blooms into a delicately gorgeous flower that creates somewhat of a balloon pocket before opening up. There are 2 clusters of these flowers in the yard, when I moved in there we 3 or 4 and some of them were a vibrant blue. These are mostly white, or pale blue, might have to do with the quality of the soil or the age of the plant, I’m not sure, but they are still looking good to me.
May wasn’t all about purple and pink flowers, everything else grew a lot too and there was a lot of yard work going on- the Dandelions are growing in quite strong, like they do. I must have plucked a hundred of them already. They sure spread quickly and it’s no wonder why… check out these beautiful seeds preparing for flight.
Other yard work entailed managing the weeds growing out of the patio bricks, it’s a weekly chore if you want to keep up with them, I like the moss, but there are several other intruders that just don’t belong. And then there are the wild Violets, they don’t exactly belong, but since I know what they look like when they’re young, I let them hang around until they flower- such a sweet little flower to appear in the cracks amongst the weeds.
I also transplanted some ferns from an area taken over by the Hostas to a less crowded space on the shady side of the yard. I love to watch a fern unfurl and reveal it’s glory one leaf at a time.
The rose bush is full of buds ready to burst, the bush looks larger and more healthy than previous years, so it appears we will have a lot of flowers next week! These roses are a bright burgundy red with yellow stamens.
One of the 2 sage bushes bloomed quite nicely, seems early, but they never really died this winter, I suppose it was time. Their flowers are really fun to watch grow, as the stems grow out, small buds emerge along with the new leaves, eventually turning into many small purple and white flowers, they’re the kind of flower you might walk right by and miss the beautiful details if you don’t look closely.
And finally the last blooms to appear this May were the peonies. We have 2 established bushes, both pale pink. Peonies have always been in my life, while growing up, our neighbor Jack had a row of Peonies stretching the length of his yard. I would love to visit him and run in and out of the bushes each year, smelling each flower and inspecting the millions of ants that crawled through them. I always thought Ants we’re cool little creatures too. Every year Jack would cut a couple large bouquets for us, we would shake out the ants, never ridding them completely, and they would sit in a vase on our kitchen table until the silky petals began to fall.
April showers bring May flowers and May flowers trigger lots of nostalgia for me. There’s something so special about being able witness all of these plants waking up from the winter to blossom, just in time for summer to begin.