All of the plants I'm about to show you have featured here before for Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, but never so early. I don't have to tell you that the weather's been unseasonably warm.
We'll see what's out in the garden in a minute. It's worth a reminder, though, that various gardens will open for their snowdrop walks earlier than usual. Rode Hall in Cheshire start theirs 30th January, a whole week earlier than in the last two years. For what you can expect, read Susan Rushton's account of her visit in 2015. In the meantime, here's a preview:
Chelsea Physic Garden has also brought forward their snowdrop days, from 16th to 24th January, two weeks earlier than originally planned. They're usually one of the first gardens to have snowdrops in bloom anyway, and, in fact, some of theirs have been out since well before Christmas (it's a very sheltered site).
Back to the garden. The pulmonaria are looking rather shy, with various rather short plants displaying gentle colours.
The winter aconite hasn't quite emerged, which seems funny as it's usually the first:
Here's something unexpected:
And here's a hyacinth that I planted out last year after having it indoors. Oddly, it's got exactly the same problem as the ones I grow every year over Christmas: the flower blooms before the stalk grows. I thought it was to do with room temperature. Oh, perhaps temperature has, indeed, affected it.
So, what will happen in a few weeks, when spring really has sprung? Here's what Nick Bailey, Head Gardener of Chelsea Physic Garden, has had to say about it.
The unusual weather patterns of the last few years have triggered some odd responses in ornamental plants. Some deciduous species are remaining semi-evergreen through winter while flowering patterns of some perennials, shrubs and bulbs have changed.
This December saw Camassia leichtlinii in flower, a full six months ahead of its usual blooming time while Fuchsia ‘Hawkshead’, which usually flowers in summer and autumn, is in full bloom now! Even sure-fire summer flowering species such as Geranium sanguineum are currently in bloom at the Physic Garden.
Despite the novelty of having these plants flowering ‘out of season’ it may cause problems for pollinators later on if certain species have bloomed before the insects emerge in spring.
We might be in for an interesting year.
This is part of Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day hosted by May Dreams Gardens.