I have three Three Super Early Spring Bloomers for you garden! If you’re like me, you can’t wait for the first flowers of the year and these little lovelies will pop their heads up before anyone else has even thought of braving the cold.
My first and current favorite – Hellebores! They’re also called the Lenten Rose and have a long and storied garden history. Mine start blooming in February (if you can see them through the snow) and the flowers hang on for ages as the seeds develop. They’re great in zone 3 to 7, they’re evergreen, deer resistant, very low maintenance and they also make a hell of a cut flower. I’m adding this link to Margaret Roach’s A Way to Garden, and she has a terrific interview with a hellebore breeder that will answer any question you could possibly have!
My second favorite, Galanthus a.k.a., Snowdrops… LOVE these, though I’m not as crazed as some who will literally steal the latest and greatest being bred. Check out this link to the U.K.’s Telegraph that gives you a peek into the crazy world of snowdrop collector’s. I love them for their crazy, early appearance (hint –snowdrop), their deer resistance and their hardiness – they can handle zones 2 to 9 but are happier in 4 to 7.
And last but not least, Winter Aconite, or Eranthis. This is that perfect little tuber that is easy to grow and happily spreads itself around once you’ve planted it. It’s zone 3 to 7, critter resistant and likes full sun to part shade. Great plant! I first fell in love with this beauty when I was living in Massachusetts and some of the very old homes would have carpets of these spreading across their lawns in crazy early spring. Sadly, I don’t have photo’s of that! Ugh. It was before the age of having a camera on your cell – bummer, but here’s a link to a field of them in all their glory.
So do you love them or what? There are loads of other plants that will bloom early but these are the babies I’m loving now. I keep adding bulbs, tubers and plants every year and the display get’s better and better. Check the bulb catalogs that are rolling into you mailboxes now, they tend to offer a pretty substantial discount if you order now (at least for the Eranthis and Galanthus). If you’re searching for hellebores, I’ve often found them at spring garden club sales and they tend to be less expensive than catalogs and they’re locally grown. Always a good thing!
Happy gardening all!