Sunday, February 28, 2016

Are they Daffodils or Jonquils?

The question of  'Daffodils, or Jonquils?'  is frequently asked.

All Jonquils are Daffodils. All Daffodils are not Jonquils, but they are all Narcissus.

Come explore what's blooming in my garden today and I'll point out some of the different types.

These are Trumpet Daffodils.

These are Jonquils; cultivar is 'Sweetness'

Both are early bloomers. Other daffodils will extend the season until late March, ending with 'Baby Moon' and some other late bloomers.

This is a Cyclamineus daffodil, 'Tete a Tete'
a short-necked early bloomer. 

Large Cupped Daffodils including 'Fortune.'

'Ice Follies' is a great daffodil with white petals
 also from the Division 'large cupped' daffodil.

Two last views of some 'Sweetness' jonquillas that I moved when they stopped blooming in too much shade. Looks as if they're happy here if they could get a little timely fertilizer.

Narcissus are separated into 13 divisions, including the familiar Large Cups, Trumpets, Jonquillas and so on. I think the British just use 10 divisions. It's okay to call all of them Daffodils. I do. Mostly.

Here's your botany lesson for today: Narcissus (the genus, not the Paperwhite narcissus that can be forced in water --Paperwhites are Tazetta daffodils, isn't that confusing?) Anyhow, Narcissus the genus is in the family of Amaryllis. To further confuse you, the family Amaryllis contains the big colorful blooming Amaryllis that we force at Christmastime. Those are now called Hippeastrums.

All this naming business started with Linnaeus in the 1700s. Botanists still do not always agree and they're always moving things from one family to another, or changing names of things. 

I call this Hippeastrum an Amaryllis.
It surprised me this week with blossoms.

It doesn't really matter what you call the plants in your own garden, the Nomenclature Police are not coming after you. It does help if you get close enough to the correct name that people know what you mean. Like Daisy.

Gerbera Daisy blooming in my garden today.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Busywork While I Wait for Spring

This is the second of Touch Quilts --some people call them Fidget Quilts where I am using up a lifetime of collecting fabrics and trims for one project or another.

The theme of this quilt is Elephants because of the elephant print velour fleece that I found online, the only kiddie print I bought and only because of the texture.  I found a number of more grown-up fleece prints with themes like hunting dogs, birds, horses and cats. All are now in some stage of construction.

The other 'touch' fabrics are a red corduroy, yellow fleece, and a bit of blue silk.

Ribbon loops in satin and grosgrain, a row of loops that are stitched down cotton shirting, a couple of gray ribbon loops and a purple satin ear on the appliqued elephant are all for busy hands to explore.

The blue triangles on a yellow fleece square are Prairie Points, folded fabric with no raw edges and an opening to slip fingers into, exploring.

There are a couple of pockets: a regular striped pocket with red ribbon trim and a non-functioning upside pocket with lace in the bottom corner is just for exploration. Running one's hand into that yellow triangle smooths the velour underneath which feels wonderful to touch.

There's a square of the velour left to use as a backing. The front will be circus-themed. I'm still auditioning blocks that will not look too juvenile. Everybody loves the circus.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Bloom Day Feels like March

Mid-February: the Sun is shining, Azaleas are starting to bloom and the Wind is fierce like March. Gusts up to 25 mph according to the weatherman. We expect thunderstorms later today.

Cheerfulness Daffodils
King Alfred has a few yellow blooms, too.

Camellias in shades from white to red are
blooming, sometimes nipped back by frost.

Ancient Camellias are hardy.

Bees are visiting Camellias.

Azaleas have tried to open since last month.

 Shrimp plant is hardy with the least amount
 of protection from pine trees overhead.

Taiwan Cherries, blooming for a month.

'Leonard Messell' Magnolia from the back and front. These bloom a few at a time, only to be frost bitten or killed. Notice the tight buds saved back for later.

 A brave Gerbera daisy under pines.

A last look at Camellias, winter beauties.

Happy Bloom Day.

What IS Bloom Day?

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Hyacinths, no Hippeastrum

We so enjoyed the Fisher Peanut butter. Now it's time to enjoy food for the soul as Mama used to call it.

They said that the single pots of blooming Hyacinths, mostly pink and white that bloomed earliest,  that I sent for the birthday celebrants at the nursing home in January were a hit.

These pics were quickly snapped when I went to get the cat out of the greenhouse so I could close the doors tightly against thunderstorms that are crossing the Chattahoochee as I type.

Hyacinths in the outdoors are blooming before stems are out of the ground, indicating a lack of winter cold.

I had an email from Sally's Mom who said she followed my instructions for pre-chilling and planting hyacinths in pots of soil with good results.

I failed to follow my own instructions closely enough for Hippeastrum. No Amaryllis are blooming in the greenhouse, just a plethora of green foliage. I'm not sure where I went wrong but maybe buds will appear sometime this month or the next. If not, they're all going into the ground outside to start over for bloom cycles next spring.