Joseph here, sharing some things in bloom in my northern Indiana garden from the first half of May.
I’m not sure what species this wallflower (Erysimum sp.) is—it came from a mixed packet of seed—but whatever it is, it has been covered with flowers for a month, and all kinds of bees and other pollinators LOVE it.
The first of my annual poppies (Papaver sp.) is blooming! This self-sowed from a planting of the the variety ‘Orange Chiffon’ last year, but I think the bees made a hybrid, because it looks a little different than the mother. Whatever it is, I like it!
This was a pleasant success. I’d heard it was easy to overwinter zonal geraniums (Pelargonium hybrids, Zones 9–11 or as an annual), so I tried it. Before the first frost last fall, I pulled them out of the ground and containers, shook the soil off, and just put them in a box in the basement. They sat there all winter, and a few weeks ago I potted them up. Now they’re alive, growing, and blooming! I’m happy to get a second year without having to buy more.
Anticipation—there are buds on my hollyhocks (Alcea rosea, Zones 3–8). I love hollyhocks. Yes, the leaves will get rust on them later, but I don’t care.
Siberian wallflower (Cheiranthus allionii, Zones 3–8) is a biennial. I didn’t even notice it growing last year after I sowed the seeds, but now it is blooming away. I love the bright color, but the fragrance is even more amazing.
Speaking of fragrance, one of my favorite shrubs is blooming, Abelia mosanensis (Zones 4–8). It is so pretty, and the flowers smell like jasmine. Since my garden is too cold for real jasmine, I’m happy to grow this. I usually see a lot of butterflies on it as well, but none yet this year for some reason.
A pretty little auricula primrose (Primula × pubescens, Zones 5–9). I grew this from seed last year, and it is so nice! It is doing quite well in the bright, dry shade under my big sugar maple in the front yard.
For this year’s window boxes, I went with nonstop tuberous begonias (Begonia hybrid, Zones 10–12 or as an annual or tender bulb). They’re pretty right now! I hope they keep up well through the summer.
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