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May 14, 2011

Unfurling of Spring

Filed under: Contests,Flowers,Our gardens,Spring — Judy @ 11:21 pm

The unfurling and uncurling of spring is now taking place in gardens all around me. This miraculous process is one that I love to watch. The emerging leaves or flowers give only a little hint of the final show!

“I love spring anywhere, but if I could choose I would always greet it in a garden.” ~ Ruth Stout

Watch the Christmas ferns bending over backward as their fronds uncurl.

Polystichum acrostichoides

Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)

The ‘Lady in Red’ ferns unfurl in red, but their leaflets turn green while the stems stay red.

Athyrium 'Lady in Red'

Athyrium filix-femina 'Lady in Red'

The next picture is one that I am submitting to the Gardening Gone Wild Picture This contest for May. The unfurling leaves of the Crimson King maple, though red, remind me of newly emerging bat wings drying in the sun. Or what I imagine they would look like. I love how the early morning sun lights up the leaves against the clear blue sky.

Crimson King maple

Crimson King maple

The round pink candy balls of the crabapple open to five-petaled confections before they turn white and all flutter to the ground.


Crabapple, unknown variety

These hostas look like big thumbs sticking out of the ground before unfurling to huge umbrella leaves.

Hosta 'Sum and Substance'

Hosta 'Sum and Substance'

This dwarf iris bloom was a surprise. About six corms were rescued from under an overgrown spot several years ago and, as far as anyone knew, it had never bloomed. After multiplying quietly for several years, it burst forth this year with huge purple blooms on short stems and leaves way before any of the usual bearded iris, and it is not Iris reticulata. Any identification ideas?


Early Dwarf Iris, unknown variety

The nodding Solomon’s seal is blooming as the 3′ compound leaves continue to unfurl.

Polygonatum commutatum

Polygonatum commutatum (Solomon's Seal)

The Ostrich fern fiddleheads appear to be looking askance at the one in the center! Hmm, what did he do wrong?

Matteuccia struthiopteris

Matteuccia struthiopteris (Ostrich fern)

The unfurling of the August lily hosta brings memories of the wonderful fragrances to come.

Hosta plantaginea

Hosta plantaginea (August lily)

What is unfurling in your garden now?


  1. Oh my…. how could you even pick??? They are all so gorgeous….. yes, the maple is lovely, but I also love the fiddleheads, and that iris bud is regal. But I especially loved the Solomon’s Seal. The streaks on the leaves are amazing! What a fabulous eye you have for detail!

    Cathy in MA

    Comment by Cathy — May 24, 2011 @ 8:27 pm

  2. Thank you! It really was hard to choose.

    Comment by Judy — May 24, 2011 @ 9:51 pm

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