After moving the Confederate rose (photo of it in its new location at the bottom of this post), there was finally room to plant the new fragrant tea olive I bought last fall. It's a tiny little thing, but with luck it will eventually turn into a small tree. (They're not generally a fast-growing plant, so it may take a while.)
This is a different variety from the other one, I believe, unless the other one was mislabeled. That first (larger) tea olive is just a plain old species version of Osmanthus fragrans. This new one is Osmanthus fragrans 'Fudingzhu', a variety that blooms more heavily than the species.
At the moment, that "heavy flowering" part is all on faith, because it's very small. Still, there are a few flowers (and have been for a while), so it's clearly making an effort. I expect that in a few years it will be about the size of the other sweet olive, which has impressed me with its fragrance, this spring.
Those flowers aren't much to look at, yet, but they pack a powerful (sweet) punch for their size.
Purple Shamrock (Oxalis) from Granny L.'s garden:
More leaves appearing on pink trumpet vine (Podranea):
I finally planted a couple of irises that have been waiting on the patio all winter... Oops... Couldn't decide where to plant them, so of course now I ended up just putting them "any old place". Not really; it's the place I was thinking of putting them all along-- near the mountain laurel. By waiting all this time, I've probably guaranteed that there will be no flowers this year-- not that they were especially likely this first spring, in any case.
This is giant apostles' iris, walking iris, Iris Neomarica caerulea 'Regina' (from Mom's clearance sale shopping).
And this is Japanese roof iris:
The two bunches of "pin cushion" ginger lily (Hedychium thyrsiforme)-- which I got by dividing one literally popping-open pot-- are both sending up new shoots. Maybe we'll get flowers, later this year. This is another that didn't bloom, last year. The blooms are reportedly much less fragrant than traditional butterfly ginger, but they have an unusual shape-- and the leaves are so pretty that they're worth growing for that alone, if you like tropical foliage.
A view of part of the shade garden.
The yellow flag iris foliage is so pretty... I know some people think they're invasive and inferior to other irises, but I love the fact that they're so easy to please. They'll grow almost anywhere!
The Southern shield fern still brings me joy whenever I take the time to look at it. :o) Just as our plants ought to do!
Another source of joy was this tiny little bunch of chartreuse leaves I spied at the base of the Japanese shrub mint (Leucosceptrum japonicum 'Golden Angel'). Yay! It's coming back!!
Leaves are just starting to show on the tulip trees.
Our garden doesn't have much in the way of spring bulbs. That's one improvement I'd like to make, in years to come, if possible. Tulips, sadly, aren't worth it, this far south (in my humble opinion); I'd want to focus on bulbs that have proven reliable for the coastal south. Spanish bluebells (aka wood hyacinths) look interesting, as do starflowers (Ipheion uniflorum).
There are certain daffodils that do well in the South, too. We have a couple types of daffodils, already-- in very small numbers-- but I have no idea which varieties they are. Of the two, this short one seems the better performer, but they're currently so sparse (and so tiny) that they don't make much of an impact.
Could this be 'Tete-a-Tete'? That's one variety I see mentioned a lot (and I know it's good for the South and a short daffodil).
This viburnum cutting I took last spring is now in its new, permanent (I hope) home. This is the plant I put in the "test hole" in the front yard, when I was trying to decide where to place the Confederate rose-- up between the largest sago palm and the ash tree. I don't know if it'll make it through that crucial first year okay or not, but it's already put out a nice flush of new (beautifully "crinkled") leaves. If I can remember to water it consistently, this summer, I think it has a decent chance.
Another promising sign from one of Mom's clearance plants! This is Duranta erecta 'Sapphire Showers'. There were two of them, and I think they both have new leaves coming up from the ground. If no leaves show up on the existing vines in the next few weeks, I'll go ahead and cut them back.
I never know when/how to prune clematis, so I never do. (Shame shame shame...) I do know that you time the pruning based on when they bloom, and I think there are something like three different "schedules" of clematis... Anyway, they always amaze me by putting new leaves on the driest, deadest-looking old vines you ever did see. (That's why I hesitate to actually make a cut! How do you know which ones to cut back, unless the leaves are out? I need to do some reading...)
This one's already getting ready to bloom:
Too many photos of an azalea:
Overview shot-- the front corner of the flower garden:
The white loropetalum is covered in flowers at the moment:
And finally, the sawed-off Confederate rose in its new home by the shed:
It looks a little odd, cut back like this, but it should be looking better soon (I hope).
After this week's warmer-than-usual weather, we're expecting a couple of rainy days, followed by a return to cooler temperatures. I'm hopeful that it won't get cold enough to damage anything, but I'll try to keep an eye on it and have a few old sheets at the ready.