Friday, March 29, 2013

Different years - different bloom times


I took this picture of my friend Mary Wayne Dixon's entrance garden on March 30th of last year.  If I were to go by there tomorrow, there would not be a single yellow bloom showing on the Lady Banks rose.  And, the Viburnum macrocephalum on the left would have only a hint of small apple green domes.  The Japanese maple would still be bare.

You can't see, but the Kwansan cherry trees on the front left already had tufts of fluffy pink flowers by this date.  Today, the Yoshino cherries, which bloom earlier, are barely out.

The cool, well, actually cold, weather has determined the bloom times this year.  Normally in Atlanta we have a peak flowering time around April 1.  This year, it still looks like winter.  About all the color out there is coming from yellow forsythia and magenta red buds.  Loropetalum is in bloom, but it's not showy like the azaleas and dogwoods.

Of course, you people with snow on the ground are probably shaking your heads.  I remember being at the Kentucky Derby on the first Saturday in May.  A woman from Michigan said their daffodils were just then coming up.  Ours peak in February and March.

This year is much like the timetable we had twenty-odd years ago when I first started keeping track of when things bloomed.  Every year is different, but this season is an anomaly when one compares it to the last decade.  In a couple of weeks, everything will have changed, and Atlanta will look like a fairyland.  I can't wait.