Virginia Bluebells

MONDAY BLOG!  When I woke up this morning, I realized that I never finished and posted my blog from yesterday (4/20).  Sorry for the catch up!  The weather is quite a transformation from the 70 degrees F and sunshine we had daily last week and throughout the weekend as we’re now seeing temperatures in the 40s and lots of chilly winds.  Morning drizzle on Monday may have kept some of our volunteers away but we still had a very productive day both inside and outside with plenty of accomplishments.  I didn’t get much photography done so dedicated this blog to the awesome Virginia bluebells (Mertensia virginica) which are coming up steadily around the gardens and are just barely starting to bloom.  This is a popular native, Spring ephemeral and puts on quite a colorful show from the time of emergence with maroon leaves in late March.  The foliage turns green followed by brilliant blue flowers opening from pinkish buds to an 18″ tall plant.  The entire plant ultimately goes dormant by mid June as the foliage yellows and dries out (or can be cut back at that time).  We love our colonies in multiple locations and always enjoy the spring show.
Larry, Big John, Terry and Cindy all had a wide range of activities both inside and outside.  Cindy planted over 200 castor bean (Ricinus communis) seeds and had myriad other tasks as well including garden tidying after the drizzle diminished.  John and Terry worked together on a wide range of tasks including preparing an area near the North point garden for further development.  Larry worked on getting the sunken garden pool/fountain running and I caught up on a wide range of indoor tasks and had some meetings.  Since my memory is now a day old, I hope I can recall all our wonderful volunteers!  Ron R., Bob C. and Lloyd assembled our plant sale tables while Alan and Dr. Gredler worked on some painting.  Eva helped with some cleaning in the Horticulture Center and helped process some cannas that we’ll be repotting shortly.  Vern, Dave, Jim and Bob K. finished construction on our new obelisks (for sale in the Cottage Garden Gallery and at our upcoming Spring Plant Sale) and are shifting to other projects.  Dick H. worked on some odd jobs and Maury ran errands and got some of our smaller water features up and running.  Gary worked on label production and we also saw Marv B., Rollie, Urban and many others.