Mayflowers…or rather, the flowers of May

  I’m still a bit of a beginning gardener.  There are a few things I’ve been growing for years with success, but I still find myself googling an awful lot and looking to more experienced gardeners for information.

  I thought that perhaps other new gardeners would appreciate seeing what I have growing…what it looks like at different stages and knowing when it blooms.  I think that having the online garden journal will help me as well!
  It’s the first week of May, and with the extremely mild winter and warm spring so far, there’s a LOT up.  The lilacs have already completely bloomed and died back, the daffodils and tulips are long gone and many of the hardier herbs have already started to fight each other for space in the herb garden.
  These lily of the valley started blooming last week.  I love lily of the valley.  They’re invasive, which usually isn’t a good thing, but with these, I put them places I need a ground cover and then try to stop myself from rolling in them like a dog when they bloom.  They are so incredibly potent (and wonderful) smelling.  I currently have 4 or 5 of these finger sized stems in a tiny vase in my room and it’s enough to make the whole room smell fabulous.
  One warning before you rush out to plant these.  If you have kids or not-very-bright pets, keep an eye on them.  These are highly poisonous if eaten.
  If you planted garlic and are playing along, here’s the latest shot.  They’re about a foot and a half tall.  No shoots for blossoms yet, but I’m sure it won’t be too long before we start to see them!
  My peonies are all closed up into tight little balls still, but they’re crawling with ants.  The ones I transplanted last year took a breather from blooming after the trauma of being uprooted from their old homes, so I’m hoping this year I’ll actually get some flowers!
  My lavender and my mulberry tree had both been scaring me.  While all of our other trees are fully leafed out and my mint and thyme are building ballistas to wage more effective war against each other, my mulberry tree has just started to have buds and my lavender just turned green.  I was horrified I had somehow killed them both over the kindest winter on record.  Apparently they’re just late bloomers.  Literally.
  Being faster bloomers, my clematis (that I built this trellis for) and my rhododendron have both flowered in the last couple days.
  The clematis is insane.  You can see from the post that a month ago it was just starting to leaf out and only barely reached the upper trellis.  It is now so thick that you can’t actually see the structure of the bottom trellis and it has already grown more than half way across the upper one.
  The rhododendron I was extremely excited to see blossom since it went in last summer (so I didn’t see it bloom) and because I saw huge, gorgeous rhododendrons everywhere on our trip to Pittsburgh this past weekend (I’ll tell you more about our trip on Saturday).
  My climbing roses are starting to get buds already but my “normal” roses aren’t.  I’m going to go ahead and assume that my climbing roses will be flowering earlier than the others since they were a last summer addition to the garden too!
  What’s blooming in your yard?  How many “I guess we’ll see what this does” plants are you keeping an eye on this year?  Let me know.  I’m still learning too!
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