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Northwest Regional Reports

Early Spring Ephemerals for the Northwest

Add new cultivars to your collection and encourage naturalization into a sea of flowers

Giant snowdrops, hardy cyclamen, and reticulated irises shine in spring. Photos: Jason Jorgensen

Even though cold winter weather is still hanging around in March, there are sure signs of spring in the garden. Early spring is one of the more exuberant times of year, with amazing colors and unique plant varieties (some often rare) showing up in the garden. These short-lived botanical jewels that dot the gardens are called ephemerals. They not only serve as the harbinger of spring, but they provide us with beautiful colors to entice us out into the garden. They also provide the early insect population with much-needed food after their winter hibernation period and sustain them until spring’s riot of flowers. Here are some of my favorites that are starting to bloom now and appearing in your local nurseries and garden centers. Get them when you see them, as they typically have a limited availability.

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