There are signs of spring everywhere! Small spring bulbs and irises are awake and blooming along with some Star Magnolias and early fruit trees. I love walking around the garden each morning to see which buds are swelling and which stems on shrubs are turning from dull brown to green with tiny leaves erupting. In the perennial bed the search is under leaves for signs of new spring growth. Not everything is awake yet, but the very mild days of late February has already started the march toward a colorful and active spring ahead.

Spring bulbs.

Iris are beginning to bloom.

The camellias are still in bloom and different varieties bloom over the next few weeks but the signs of last months heavy frost and cold is still evident in some of the flowers. The buds that were forming when the cold hit have matured now and continue to show brown from the frost on the outside of the buds and little or no pollen inside the flower. More hardy shrubs like the delightful willow shrub, which has pink buds, are competing with the camellias for the attention of pollinators.

Salix with ants.

Camellia with bee.

In the flower garden the cold hardy plants that were put in last fall have all weathered the cold without missing a beat. Dianthus and snap dragons are blooming and many summer blooming helianthus and sedums are showing new growth at ground level. March is a great time to add more perennials to the garden and many will flower this year if you get them into the ground before the heat arrives in late May.

The cool weather vegetables like carrots and the cabbage family are growing again now that the weather is milder and days longer. I have a couple of Wakefield cabbages that were too small to harvest last fall but are growing well now and will be a good size in a week or two. Indoors the seedlings of this year’s cabbage family and lettuce have been sown and are growing well. They need another week or two before going into the garden. On mild days they go outside to the plastic shelf unit that does not keep cold out but does keep the breezes out and gives the seedlings great sunlight to boost growth.

Dianthus blooming.

Cabbage growing.