Garden Photo of the Day

First Signs of Spring in Indiana

Snowdrops, irises, trillium, and more!

close up of white and light purple reticulata iris

It’s Joseph in northern Indiana here, where a string of warm days has pushed my garden over into the earliest flowers of spring.

close up of pink hellebore flowerI picked this hellebore (Helleborus hybrid, Zones 4–8) from a local nursery with no tag, so I didn’t know what to expect. It was just a small plant, and I honestly wasn’t sure it would flower this year, but here it is! It’s a nice double pink, and the flowers don’t hang down quite as much as most varieties I’ve grown. I’m happy!

clumps of common snowdrops in the gardenWhen I moved into this house two and a half years ago, the backyard was choked with invasive weeds like Lonicera maackii. One of the rewards for clearing that out was discovering clumps of common snowdrops (Galanthus nivalis, Zones 3–8).

close up of giant snowdrop flower compared to common snowdrop flowerIn the front garden I’ve planted lots of giant snowdrops (Galanthus elwesii, Zones 4–8). You can see how this plant gets the name, compared to the flowers of the common snowdrop in the backyard. The giant is a bit earlier blooming too. But I love both of them!

close up of bright purple crocus flowerI planted a bunch of crocuses (Crocus minimus ‘Spring Beauty’, Zones 4–8 ) last fall. The squirrels ate most of them, but a few survived and are blooming.

close up of white and light purple reticulata irisReticulata irises (Iris reticulata and related species and hybrids, Zones 5–9) are favorite early bloomers for me. They don’t persist well in heavy clay soil, but this garden is very sandy, so they seem happy. This one was part of a mix of different varieties and so I’m not sure of the cultivar name, but it sure is pretty!

close up of pulmonaria in bloomI always forget just how early Pulmonaria (Zones 3–8) are. I always think of bulbs as early bloomers, but this little perennial starts so soon, with plenty of more blooms to come.

close up of snow trillium about to bloomAnd this is maybe my favorite early bloomer of all—snow trillium (Trillium nivale, Zones 3–8). It isn’t quite open yet, but it will be soon! I love this little plant because it is so early, AND it is native, a key food source for native pollinators coming out of their winter hibernation.

Any signs of spring in your garden? Send in photos! We’d love to see them here on the GPOD.


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  1. sandyprowse 03/06/2024

    Joseph, I really enjoyed your posting of those plants. The pink Helleborus is a show-stopper! I did not know there was such a thing as a larger Snowdrop but will try and buy that. The Reticulata Iris is stunning — but nothing could come close to the Pulmonaria, with the colours of pink and blue. Thanks for showing us your spring garden. Such a happy time of year.

  2. User avater
    musabasjoosue 03/06/2024

    The Iris reticulata is a beauty! Spring is springing early this year!

  3. User avater
    user-7007816 03/06/2024

    I enjoyed seeing your early spring flowers. You are about a week ahead of me in central Michigan. I have snowdrops and crocus in bloom. Really like the little iris.

  4. cynthia2020 03/06/2024

    The Iris reticulata is lovely and the snowdrops look great!

  5. CarolIntheGarden 03/06/2024

    I love the Trillium nivale and Iris! Your early spring garden is inspiring!

  6. User avater
    simplesue 03/06/2024

    I really like the pale color of the Iris reticulata!

  7. btucker9675 03/06/2024

    That pink hellebore is so very beautiful - thanks for sharing your Spring garden!

  8. [email protected] 03/06/2024

    Love them all- thanks for the dose of Spring tonic!

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