Tips and resources for farmers and gardeners
Revealing Signs of SpringWhere winters are long and cold and colors are faded by sun, wind and snow, the first glimpse of green growth is long awaited. The emerging tips of perennials aren’t very noticeable from a distance, and even on close inspection may be just barely evident. But they’re a promise of green to come.
Rather than being impatient for what’s ahead, it’s a good time to push away some leaves or snow and look for signs of spring. What might you find?
Plants like coralbells, lambs’ ear, Lenten rose, columbine, bergenia and many of the penstemons stay somewhat green all winter, particularly in protected spots. Groundcovers like periwinkle never fade and even bloom early in spring, along with other low-lying plants like lungwort and candytuft.
Some perennials, including bergenia, prairie smoke and columbine, turn dark red or purple in fall and emerge in these dark colors again in spring; colors that may not stand out against soil or mulch, but surrounded by snow they’re a welcome sight in the winter garden.
Blooms will come soon enough and early-to-rise usually means early to bloom as well, so these plants and others—columbine, bleeding heart, celandine poppy, bluebells, Jacob’s ladder—will soon offer bright blossoms. But for now, if we look closely, there is promise enough of the green to come. More information and photos at: www.pinterest.com/nearboretum/spring-blooming-perennials.
Karma Larsen, Nebraska Forest Service & Nebraska Statewide Arboretum
Talk a walk through a field and run your fingers across the leaves, or bend over and lightly touch the seedlings emerging from the ground, and you may make the difference between whether those plants thrive or perish
Lily of the Valley
Home and Garden Center