May flowers

We didn't have that many April showers, but that has not held back the May flowers. May is a bit cool this year, and that is helping the flowers last. Just to hold on to spring a while longer, I took pictures of some of the Mother's fanciful creations.

My little nuclear family doesn't pay a lot of attention to Mother's Day, but some years ago I was surprised with a bleeding heart plant on the occasion. It was a big hit, and followed with a second plant the following year. Growing conditions for this particular plant must be just right where we live, because these plants put on a spectacular show next to our front steps each year.

Spring also brings violets, which are running amok in the little garden behind the house. The lilies of the valley that my mother gave me are also running amok. Both of these plants are a connection to my mother's Illinois roots, as they are direct descendants of plants that my mother brought from her mother's garden.

Spring in the northern woods means trillium. These fine specimens are blooming at the edge of the woods in back of our house.

Wild columbine blooms near our house, and a few have taken up residence at the base of our front steps. I think of them as friends, and smile to see them come back year after year. These are not weeds, even if they are not growing in a conventional spot.

Foam flowers come in two guises. There are the little wild ones, that are blooming profusely in the woods right now.

Then there are the cultivated ones. I found these at Wheat's Greenhouse, my favorite local purveyor of fine plants. They were tagged as perennials, and tolerant of shade, so I brought them home to try them out.

We have had many failures in our flower gardens over the years, as we do have shady conditions and most flowers are sun worshipers. These have been a great success. They bloom all summer long, unlike their wild progenitors. Best of all, they look like they belong. It makes sense to grow the descendant of a forest plant in a flower garden that is in the woods. I'd like to build on this concept in the future, when I have more time to spend in the garden.


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