christopher_cnc

The Handiwork of Bulbarella Stinze

Christopher C Nc
18 days ago

This is my mother's doing. All I had to do was pick up all the sticks, kill off an acre of Yellow Archangel Lamium, Lamium galeobdolon, and chop it all down once a year to find it. It is just beginning.

Now is when you hope that a crushing snow does not come through. That is always a distinct possibility in these parts.







Comments (20)

  • mxk3
    18 days ago

    What is the blue and white flower in the first pic -- it is GORGEOUS!

  • Christopher C Nc
    18 days ago

    That is Chionodoxa.

  • gardengal48 (PNW Z8/9)
    18 days ago

    As far as I'm concerned, yellow archangel is the plant from hell!! I inherited it in my current garden (strangely intentionally populated with a plethora of local invasives) and have spent at least a portion of each of the past 4 years trying to eradicate it. But it unfailingly pops again somewhere else. And my garden is tiny....I can't imagine trying to eliminate it from a whole acre!

    It will pop up even in the middle of winter here. You have obviously done a good job eliminating yours to have the bulbs flourishing so well and no sign of the dreaded spotted leaved devil :-)

    I love the feathery petaled narcissus in your second photo. Is that 'Rip van Winkle'?

  • Christopher C Nc
    18 days ago

    Yes that is 'Rip van Winkle'. When I say killed off I mean reduced by 95% and ongoing. It sets a tremendous seed bank in the soil so can easily regrow from seedlings. I spray it with glyphosate in the dead of winter when everything else is dormant. It stays green until spring and then drops dead. And it is an ongoing process.

  • sunnyborders
    18 days ago
    last modified: 18 days ago

    They seem fine in that situation, but the Chionodoxa, Puschkinia and Siberian squill (latter two in the fourth picture) can be quite invasive. Personal experience with Chionodoxa and Puschkinia: they seed all over the place. Once established they're very difficult to eliminate/control (e.g. preventing them seeding from a flower bed into a lawn). Have seen Chionodoxa and Puschkinia move from one garden into the garden of neighbours and Chionodoxa move from one garden into an adjacent park.


  • Christopher C Nc
    18 days ago

    Yes those three among others do seed and spread prolifically now that the lamium is gone. They would look great in a lawn. It's the Stinze. The native spring beauty and toothworts are among the first spring ephemeral natives to return and join in. You should see the place in may when the Phacelia purshii is in bloom.

  • sunnyborders
    18 days ago
    last modified: 18 days ago

    I do agree, Christopher, that they can give a nice splash of blue in a lawn. Have had much less problem with hybrid Chionodoxa 'Giant Pink' which doesn't spread anywhere near as easily. Still, I have also taken in recent years to deadheading the clumps of 'Giant Pink', after blooming, to be on the safe side. That plant and its bulbs are considerably larger and the bulbs seem to end up less deeply located in the ground.

    Niagara-on-the-Lake, On. (Mid April 2009)

    Aurora, On. (mid April 2010).


  • Christopher C Nc
    18 days ago

    Love the pictures sunnyborders. Yes, I was a bit disappointed when the larger blue and pink chionodoxa did not show signs of spreading as well as the species. I like when things turn wild. I do however retain veto power as the gardener.

    The late spring bulb to watch out for, a true invader, is Spanish Bluebells, Hyacinthoides hispanica.

  • sunnyborders
    18 days ago
    last modified: 18 days ago

    Interesting Christopher. Perhaps some of it is to do with location, as well as tastes in herbaceous perennial beds.

    Was given some English bluebells, some of which turned out to be Spanish ones (included different flower colours). They really haven't challenged my personal predisposition to ordered chaos. They've generally been team players, within the perennial beds, at least so far. It probably helps that at the time they bloom the perennial beds are generally filling in with taller spring perennials.

    One thing about Chionodoxa, Puschkinia and Siberian squill, is that they're are all poisonous. The latter saves them here from the routine predation of hybrid crocuses by voles/field mice.

  • Christopher C Nc
    18 days ago

    The Spanish Bluebells did get a lot of help from Bulbarella. She gathered the seeds and spread them further for years. They make a lot of seed here. We also don't have lawns or herbaceous perennial beds. These are the wild cultivated gardens. My parents wandered into the forest thirty five years ago and just started planting things and flinging seeds all over the place. I pretty much do the same.

    Damn varmints. They have a big veto with tulips and some how they can find the crocus in an ocean of poisonous bulbs. At least the crocus self sow and manage to hang in there. They haven't found mine yet.



  • Christopher C Nc
    16 days ago

    Bulbarella's garden this afternoon. It is at the stage of things where quality is now completely, Weather Depending. We have had many days of 60+ highs.



    All the current green of the forest floor are bulbs, all kind bulbs, swimming in a carpet of Spanish Bluebells, Hyacinthoides hispanica. The herbaceous layer of flowers wakes up next.




  • Christopher C Nc
    15 days ago

    The overcast lighting was perfect today. The wind was calm. The warm temperatures have the bulbs in speed bloom. I expect peak bloom will be later this week. If you are so inclined, come for a long slow Walk With Bulbs in the Wild Cultivated Gardens



  • rouge21_gw (CDN Z6)
    15 days ago
    last modified: 15 days ago

    but the Chionodoxa, Puschkinia and Siberian squill (latter two in the fourth picture) can be quite invasive

    Given that they "disappear" (from the surface) sometime in the spring it has never bothered me that they spread.

  • katob Z6ish, NE Pa
    15 days ago

    !!!! Thanks for the blog link Christopher. There's snow and cold here this morning and now I can keep myself busy with years of posts to browse through!

  • sunnyborders
    15 days ago

    Thanks from me too, Christopher. It's also informative to see the property a gardener is dealing with. That may indicate more about not only the gardener's tastes but also the possibilities the gardener is dealing with.

  • Christopher C Nc
    15 days ago

    Sunnyborders, the Wild Cultivated Gardens are definitely not your typical suburban fare. It wouldn't make much sense to try and tack a standard landscape on this amount of undulating land on the top of a mountain in the middle of nowhere. Plus there is no budget for the staff, machinery or materials that would be needed to accomplish that. It is far easier to work with nature in this situation.

    With the right client and budget, my tastes and methods of gardening are quite versatile. This is in one of my proper gardens.




  • sunnyborders
    14 days ago
    last modified: 14 days ago

    The proper garden is very attractive, Christopher. My gardens have been a lot less disciplined than your's above. Below: the perennial bed look I've aimed for. I feel it's the maintenance that makes it. As my spouse once said of our own small perennial garden, we could never have afforded it if we did not do the work ourselves.



  • Christopher C Nc
    14 days ago

    Nice sunnyborders. Is that blue Lobelia siphilitica in front? That is one of our abundant wild flowers here. The bed in the proper garden gets more like your picture in the summer just shorter. It is full of shasta daisy, black-eyed susan, rudbeckia, geraniums, lavender, roses, blueberry and weigelia. Off to the right are hydrangea paniculata and ninebark.

  • sunnyborders
    14 days ago
    last modified: 13 days ago

    Yes, Christopher. I haven't used it much because it's such a seeder (at least in a well watered garden). I kept it because it's located in a small formal garden (viz the pelargoniums located to the right). It was easy to keep it confine in a location there. The evergreen trees and bushes were not planted or maintained by me. I only put in and maintained the herbaceous perennial beds (and annuals where they were necessary).


  • emmarene9
    14 days ago

    Thank you for sharing. I love Spring bulbs but many will only bloom for one year in my area. I love Chionodoxa but no longer plant it.

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