Dreaming in My Garden

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“Stand often in the company of dreamers: they tickle your common sense and believe you can achieve things which are impossible.”

Mary Anne Radmacher

 

We only a few weeks into winter, and already the season is wreaking havoc all over the country.  We just had the third big storm with subzero temps, lots of snow and wind.  I have been spending a good deal of time looking through my garden photos from last year as the wind howls and the snow swirls.  And of course I am thinking already about spring and what will be the first blooms that show up in the garden…..and where in the garden they will burst forth.

IMG_5064One of my little idiosyncrasies is that I love to daydream.  I have been a daydreamer for over 50 years, and I find myself lost in those dreams especially in winter.  It’s a great way to wile away the hours when the snow is falling outside my door.  And dreaming is a great way to stretch your creative muscles especially when planning a garden.

As my garden plans are on hold for now, I thought I would profile a flower I have in abundance in my gardens, and one I especially want to see in spring.  One particular flower that sends me swooning comes from a very small bulb that bursts into those adorable clusters of little purply-blue bells, muscari.  I love the common name, grape hyacinths, which comes from the way the flowers resemble a bunch of purple grapes, and the scent that reminds one of hyacinths (another bulb I love).

Of course what perfect time to dream, then during Garden Bloggers Bloom Day (GBBD).  And as I dream, I will link in with Carol@May Dreams Gardens where she hosts GBBD on the 15th of every month.

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I love muscari for so many reasons.  It’s a great hardy plant that easily naturalizes with little care.  Just be sure to plant them in a moist but well draining area.

This one is Muscari latifolium.  I love the two-toned coloring of the flowers.  This one will seed all over.

 

 

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Once I see a new variety of muscari, I almost always have to grow them.  I love the white ones as much as the blue ones.  There are about 30 species in all.  

This one is Muscari botryoides ‘Album’.  I planted these in my white garden.

 

 

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The most common species and the best one for creating a drifts is Muscari armeniacum.  And I really love the fragrance of these flowers.

 

 

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Muscari can be found in so many beds and borders in my garden.  They are great to grow under trees and shrubs because the flowers emerge well before the leaves on the trees do.  Muscari are heirlooms from central and southern Europe and parts of western, central and southern Asia.

This one is formerly known as Muscari paradoxum and is now classified as Bellevalia paradoxa still sold as a grape hyacinth.

 

 

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The use of the name Muscari can be traced back to Carolus Clusius in 1601, and Linnaeus in 1753.  The name muscari comes from the Greek muschos (musk) which refers to the scent of the flower.

I love the gorgeous intense blue of this flower, Muscari aucheriDark Eyes’.

 

 

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Muscari is a very tolerant flower as it resists pests like deer.  Although my deer love the fresh new foliage that comes up in fall and spring, but not the flowers.  Muscari also can be planted in tough areas in your garden such as in clay soil and under black walnut trees as long as it has part sun.   In the Language of Flowers muscari represents usefulness.

One of my new favorites is this Muscari armeniacum “Pink Sunrise’.

 

 

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Muscari is great to plant to grow with other early blooming bulbs. And it is a great bulb to plant in containers or to force in winter.

Another one I swoon over is Muscari aucheri ‘Mount Hood’.  I love how the blue becomes deeper as you move down the flower.

 

So what flowers are you dreaming about in your garden?  Which ones can’t you wait to see pop up this spring?

 

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In December, Jan@Thanks For Today had a giveaway on her Facebook Page and I was lucky enough to win.  Jan takes beautiful pictures and makes incredible collages, and the gift I received just in time for Christmas was an ornament she created on Zazzle.  Here’s a picture of it.  I indeed feel lucky to have won this beautiful gift.  Jan currently has a theme on her blog called 365 Days of Thanks.  I am thankful I have gotten to know Jan and her blog, and I encourage you to check out her blog and Facebook page.

“I don’t dream at night; I dream all day. I dream for a living.”  ~ Steven Spielberg

 

 

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Next up on the blog:  Monday I will have my first garden book review of 2014.

I am linking in with Michelle@Rambling Woods for her Nature Notes meme.

It is a great way to see what is happening in nature around the world every Wednesday.I hope you will join me for my posts once a month at Beautiful Wildlife Garden. See my latest post.

I can also be found blogging once a month at Vision and Verb.  My first post will be on January 22nd.

As always, I’ll be joining Tootsie Time’s Fertilizer Friday.sharethelove

I am also joining in I Heart Macro with Laura@Shine The Divine that happens every Saturday.

All original content is copyrighted and the sole property of Donna Donabella @ Gardens Eye View, 2010-2014.  Any reprints or use of content or photos is by permission only.

 

 

78 comments

  1. Christina says:

    I love Muscari too! They do very well in my garden so perhaps they don’t need moist soil as you certainly could call mine that! As a bulb found in Turkey, they can grow in very hot sunny places with cold winters and autumn rain. Keep warm and keep dreaming.

    • Donna says:

      How great that you can grow these too Christina. I think they may need moist soil mainly when you plant them. Dreaming of them today with the snow storm we are getting.

  2. Lavender Cottage says:

    I love any spring flower that naturalizes and muscari is a dainty favourite. You do have many varieties and I’ve not seen the pink before so will be adding them to my wish list.

  3. Donna says:

    I too love the little patches of blue every Spring and look forward to their arrival. I also like how they show up absolutely everywhere too. I have so many different varieties that I have lost count. It is a wonderful bloom to welcome Spring. The weather this year has started as a wild ride, it should be interesting as the year moves forward.

    • Donna says:

      We are back to the wild ride today Donna so I’ll just keep dreaming of all these gorgeous bulbs that are getting ready soon to bloom!!

  4. Alison says:

    I love Muscari too, but I don’t have any in my current garden. I really should plant some in my new front garden. I love how they naturalize so well, and they make good Daffodil companions. I’m so looking forward to spring.

  5. Angie says:

    I bought a few tubs of Muscari in flower last spring – I do hope they grace my garden this year. You’ve a lovely selection Donna – enjoy your daydreams 🙂

  6. Dorothy says:

    Thank you for showing other varieties of muscari. The only one I have grown is muscari armeniacum, and they have gradually faded away but I think there are a few remaining out there somewhere! Right now I am waiting to see the first tulips. They are coming up, and I should have some blooms in early spring.

  7. Jennifer Richardson says:

    oh these tiny grape hyacinth do set my heart to dreaming, too!
    One of the sweetest firsts of the warming season and I’m always
    so SO glad to see their friendly faces:)
    Thanks for sharing these thick slices of hope,
    Jennifer

  8. Cathy says:

    They are lovely Donna! I have been dreaming today too (while sorting my seeds), about Dicentra and Corydalis, Hellebores, Pulmonarias, Poppies… Happy Dreaming!

    • Donna says:

      Cathy those flowers sound fabulous. I sorted my seeds too and now have to get everything ready as I will be starting some flowers soon 🙂

  9. susan@life-change-compost says:

    Oh Donna, that deep blue with your peachy background makes my heart go pitter-patter. I am nuts for blues and purples. I don’t have muscari in this year, but I went a little wild for Parrot tulips which I covered with blue and purple pansies. When the tulips grow through the pansies, it is gorgeous. I usually do this for about fifteen pots around the garden–we have such a wet spring, I need to know they will survive! Thanks for your post!

    • Donna says:

      Susie that combo sounds incredible. I hope you will post pics. I do love purple and peach which is what the sky looks like many mornings.

  10. Hootin' Anni says:

    Beautiful macros and such a lovely way to start my day with all this wonderful color in your garden. And if you want my opinion…nothing better than day dreamin’!!!

    • Donna says:

      I am with you Karen…waiting out winter as I dream…soon I will be planting flowers seeds in the basement awaiting a time to bring them into spring.

  11. Donalyn@The Creekside Cook says:

    I envy the variety of muscari that you have! I am working to get more of them in my gardens, because they seem so cheerful in the springtime. I always look forward to the snowdrops too, and then the many daffs. We have a lot of moles and other varmits that like to feast on bulbs all winter, so I’m a little limited in what I can have, and I treasure the ones that are unpalatable.

    • Donna says:

      Molly we are still in the grip of winter here too…but I love thinking about these spring bulbs as we move closer to spring time!!

  12. Ginnie says:

    Astrid would love your garden, Donna, as I’ve already told you. Every winter she grows hyacinth bulbs here inside the house, usually 3 at a time and then a new batch as soon as the others die. She also has bulbs planted in flower boxes out on the balcony, ready for spring. So while we don’t have a garden, we DO have a way to grow bulbs, and that makes us both happy. I’ll have to ask her if she knows about the muscari.

    • Donna says:

      It sounds lovely Ginnie having the bulbs grow indoors. I should try that! And the window boxes sound like a fabulous garden…tell Astrid I expect pictures on your blog!!

  13. Chloris says:

    I love Muscari too. That pink one is a little darling. I also love the sky blue one Muscari ‘Jenny Robinson’ bred by a great gardener who lived near here. For a pot I grow Muscari macrocarpum ‘Golden Fragrance’, it is not quite hardy here but it smells wonderful.
    Lovely to see all your Muscari

  14. Bernieh says:

    The Muscari is not a plant I know much about, so I’ve enjoyed your photos and details. The form and the many colours are just sensational. I hope your winter doesn’t get too much worse for you.

  15. commonweeder says:

    Muscari are wonderful plants. I have a lot in our “Orchard” planted years ago. They have multiplied wonderfully. I only wonder why I planted them so far away from where I could enjoy them every day. I did plant a few more blue, and whites, where I can see them from the dining table window.

  16. Gail says:

    I just found a mesh sack of muscari I forgot to plant! They will go into the soil this weekend! Their lovely color and sweet scent is marvelous and the bees love them so! Love all the varieties you’ve shared.

  17. Grace Peterson says:

    Donna, at first I thought I had come to the wrong place but the realized you changed the wall paper and furniture. I like it a lot. Oh yes, I’m dreaming of Muscari too. I love to pick them and put a bunch in a small glass vase for the bathroom or in a place where I can really enjoy them. Only 63 days until spring is official. I hope you can do a lot of dreaming between now and then. I sure will be.

    (PS I see you have my book on your virtual “shelf.” I am honored. Hugs.)

    • Donna says:

      Oh Grace I love it…yes I added some new furniture and paint. I never pick my muscari but what a great idea. I need to enjoy the garden inside more too!! And of course I have your book on my sidebar my friend!! Hugs!

  18. Andrea says:

    Hello Donna, i haven’t been here for a while, thanks for always visiting my posts. Happy New Year! You have a new look this year, love it. And the muscari, oh my favorite although we don’t have it. I saw it only twice in Sweden and Turkey, but i didn’t know there are many colors, as i only saw the blue. Very nicely shot.

    • Donna says:

      Thanks Andrea. I do love the colors of these flowers….I actually am very behind reading posts myself but I will catch up soon!!

  19. Rose says:

    I love these sweet little flowers, too; one of my new favorites is sort of a two-toned one whose name I can’t remember, but it looks similar to your ‘Mount Hood.’ I plant a few more of these every fall. I’m a long-time daydreamer, too, Donna. The winter garden of my imagination is always beautiful:)

  20. Helene says:

    I love the look of the muscari, and the scent of those that are scented – but I hate digging them up from my garden when I have got self-seeders from neighbours, brought by the wind perhaps, or maybe the birds eat seeds and drop them in my garden? Anyway, when I did up next door garden about 3 years ago there must have been about 500 big, mature muscari bulbs in that lawn – and I dug them up by hand, all of them. I can’t stand the sight of the common muscari flowers, but the more unusual ones would be fine, in small doses 🙂 I liked the white one you had, and I do know some of them don’t spread much so would be safe in my garden.

    At the moment I am dreaming of tulips, and I can’t wait for my lilies to start emerging, happy GBBD!

    • Donna says:

      The more unusual ones seem to grow in nice neat clumps Helene. The deer eat my tulips so I have few left. Can’t wait to see pictures of yours….digging up 500 of them is such a monumental task wow. Hope you had a fabulous bloom day!

  21. Pam's English Garden says:

    I grow muscari, too, Donna, but I had no idea there were so many varieties. Mine are just plain blue and now I have to get some two-tone ones. Also, I didn’t realize that they grow under walnut trees, so now I have a good place to plant them. P. x

    • Donna says:

      Oh Catherine with our hard cold winters I try to prepare for when we can feel the warmth of the sun and share its light with the unfrozen soil!! Keeps me going….

  22. Casa Mariposa says:

    I added some muscari to the garden I picked up in a plant swap last spring. I also have a single muscari that pops out of my lawn. It must have been planted by squirrels. I love seeing them in big drifts. I’m getting ready to start seeds under lights. I think that will be what keeps me from going winter-crazy this year.

    • Donna says:

      That is very interesting Kathy. Mine are about 5-6 years old and have naturalized beautifully so I wonder how the old fashioned ones would naturalize….they must have been stunning.

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