I love spring, here in the Pacific Northwest! Everywhere is bursting with color, with early blooms starting in late February. Ornamental trees such as the Flowering Plum and Japanese Cherry are a common sight lining streets and yards, not to mention the plethora of spring garden flowers and flowering shrubs. Washington is known for its apple and cherry orchards, and Oregon has one of the largest pear orchard growing areas in the country. To see the acreages of lovely, pink and white blooms for miles and miles is a beautiful sight to behold, and now is the time to view them. But alas, I digress. All I wanted was to post a few images I took recently at my local garden park. So, here we go!
The Crown Imperial Fritillaria (Fritillaria imperiallis) is a bulb flower that emerges in mid-spring. They can grow as tall as 3-4 ft. At the top of its stem are bell-shaped flowers that droop downward. At the very top of the stalk is a tuft of bright, green leaves. Most of the flowers I have seen are orange in color. There are other varieties of Fritillaria that have other blossom colors. An interesting fact about this flower species is that its bulb has a smelly odor, which helps to repel moles and other rodents.
I came across these and didn’t know what they were. I did a little research and found out that they are Borage, a starflower. Borage is an herb used for different medicinal purposes. These lovely, blue flowers have hairy stems and leaves. One can use the fresh leaves to make tea.
I am not sure what the above flower is. At first I thought it was a yellow variety of the Star of Bethlehem flower, since the leaves are similar. If anyone knows for sure what they are, I would love to hear from you.
And, of course, spring wouldn’t be spring without the lovely Bellflowers. Most of us are familiar with Bluebells. They have been hybridized to produce lovely, white and pink flowers, as well.
The local garden park I go to has a pond. Lots of aquatic life abounds here year long, including koi, turtles, and waterfowl. One of the star attractions are the pond turtles. On a sunny day one can find several of them positioned on a large rock in the middle of the pond, basking in the warm sunlight. You can see that the largest of them has claimed the pinnacle.
The other main attraction around the pond area is the waterfowl.
Not sure what the guy in the above image is. There are a lot of cross-species of ducks in the pond. It’s a fairly large sized waterfowl, and I am not sure if it’s a duck or a goose. Anyone venture to make a guess as to what species it is?
All photos copyright of Peggy A Thompson