It’s Joseph here in Indiana! It is still early spring here, and after a mild winter the temps have turned cool again, slowing everything down—but the earliest bloomers are already getting started! The smallest blooms are worth celebrating this time of year.
The first wildflowers are appearing in the woods. This is the snow trillium Trillium nivale (Zones 4–8) which, true to its name, blooms so early it sometimes gets covered with snow. It is much smaller than the normal trillium species that will bloom in a month or two, and the tiny white flowers are fragrant. It is quite a rare species, growing in only a few places in the country, so I was glad to find a beautiful stand in a local park.
Even tinier and earlier is pepper and salt (Erigenia bulbosa, Zones 4–9). Often blooming even earlier than the snow trillium, these tiny flowers are a welcome sign of spring, and a first source of food for pollinators coming out of winter hibernation.
In addition to the native early bloomers, some other plants are already flowering despite the snow we keep getting. Iris reticulata (Zones 5–9) is beautiful and so early. Good drainage helps it perennialize and come back year after year.
And, of course, the classic early bloomer, is snowdrops (Galanthus elweisii, Zones 4–8)
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