May Blooms in the Pacific Northwest



Pink Dogwood Blooms

Pink Dogwood Blooms

I’m still in my first year at my new-to-me-home, and the garden was nearly a blank slate when we moved in. So there’s not been much blooming. But I was prowling around today and was surprised to find several things blooming.

Blooming Pink Dogwood Branches

Blooming Pink Dogwood Branches

One of the things I was happiest to inherit in my new garden was a pink dogwood (Cornus florida var. ‘Rubra’), shown here and above. Isn’t it pretty?

Weigela Wine and Roses

Weigela Wine and Roses

Another pink blooming thing we inherited is this mature “Wine & Roses” weigela (Weigela florida ‘Alexandra’) that was along the side of the house. I tend to be fickle with the weigelas–I see them in other people’s gardens and love them but never make space for them in mine. But this one is staying, albeit in a new location, and even inspired the color of our front door.

Spanish Bluebells

Spanish Bluebells

Another surprise in the new garden is a small patch of Spanish Bluebells (Hyacinthoides hispanica). They’re getting a little tattered now, but they were a welcome bit of color as I have no other bulbs planted yet.



Yet another previous resident of my garden is a sizeable patch of Lithodora (Lithodora diffusa). I have to say, despite the bright blue flowers, I’m not a huge fan. Anyone want a bunch of it?

Japenese Snowbell Bush

Japenese Snowbell Bush

Interestingly, one of the plants that I really wanted to bring from the other house but couldn’t without leaving a gaping hole was a Japanese Snowball Bush (Viburnum opulus). As luck would have it, I have one at my new place, and it had several stem rootings going, so now I have a half-dozen. I know they only have this one show, but I just love them. I don’t know which variety it is–we’ll see if it produces berries or not.

Vinca Minor

Vinca Minor

I did bring quite a few plants with me, including several large container plantings. This one is overflowing with one of my favorite groundcovers, Lesser Periwinkle (Vinca minor). I don’t care how common it is–I love it’s draping habit, evergreen foliage and those pretty purple flowers every single Spring.

Viburnum Davidii

Viburnum Davidii

I’ve also installed some new plantings, particularly some foundation and “backbone” plantings in the front garden, like David Viburnum (Viburnum davidii), seen here in flower. This hardworking evergreen subshrub gets a bad rap for its extreme overuse in too-sunny parking lots and commercial landscapes, but in the right location it can add a wonderful backdrop and interest with it’s large, distinctly patterned leaves.

So that’s what’s blooming in my garden at the moment. Hopefully as the summer wears on and more plants find their way into permanent homes I’ll have more to show. But for now, I applaud all these pedestrian plants for creating a lush backdrop for the flowers yet to come.

How about you? What’s blooming in your garden?

This post is a part of theMay 2008 Garden Bloggers Bloom Day, sponsored each month byMay Dreams Gardens.


53 responses to “May Blooms in the Pacific Northwest”

  1. Lovely bones in your garden, Angela. I think you need to add some disease resistant roses to it. :)~~Dee

  2. Oh dear can you feel the tears dropping.I have just been going through old pre drought photos of my garden and the change is so unbelievable. I adore Dogwoods and tried one and it died and have always meant to try another but now does not seem to be the right time. Have the snowball tree behind my pond and I too must take some cuttings. Took some of another shrub…name ecapes me, orange blossom something. There was another one there that you have that is either hanging on by a thread or I lost it this year. We had the most rain for ages this last week end but we need several days a month of it if we are ever going to catch up. At times all I want to do is to move somewhere where it rains. They said it was a 9 yr drought the other day and where I live to the west of Melbourne we are in a rain shadow, so we often miss what the rest of the metropolitan area gains.But keep showing photos and I will keep trying.I am working on bulbs for spring. At least they will flower.Thanks for the cheer.

  3. Vicki K Avatar
    Vicki K

    Angela! Except for the Vinca ground cover, I would think you’d been photo snapping in MY garden. I have every one that you showed. I LOVE the pink dogwood too – I wish it would last longer. My viburnum has exploded into a monstrous presence. Before the neighbors installed a fence, the deer kept it in check. Now I don’t know how to trim it!

  4. Thanks for sharing your lovely photos. I’ve also been discovering an inherited yard, as we enjoy our first spring in our rental house. I was thrilled to discover that we have a pink dogwood too – one of my absolute favorites. It’s all done blooming now. We also have an old lilac bush – another one of my favorites. I made some lovely bouquets for the house with the two of these together. I’ve also got some rose bushes (can’t wait to see what colors) a sad looking rhododendron and a hydrangea. Plus some things I can’t identify yet. I’m having a good time adding to it, removing weeds from this neglected space, and just having an outdoor space of my own after years of apartment living.Thanks as always for the inspiration. :)Jennifer

  5. Enjoy all the beautiful newly discovered colors. Pretty pictures and I’m impressed with your knowledge of all the foliage too.

  6. What a breath of spring!Pink dogwoods are my favorite! Thank you for the garden inspiration!

  7. Hei!Here is my blooming flowers: have Lesser Periwinkle too. Same colour as yours and another, *sky blue*. I haven´t picture of them. They booming right now.And I have Snowball too, but its blooming later here in Finland.

  8. Hi Angela,Lovely pictures of your garden in May. It’s always wonderful to see foliage in bloom especially dogwood, lilac, and various other lovelies. My yard contains nearly all the same except for snowball. In one corner of my front yard grows a beautiful cream dogwood. Must take a picture of it before blossoms fade.Thanks for recent comment on my blog.Have a great week!

  9. You have great beginnings for your dream garden. A good starting point. Thanks for sharing the beauty of your yard with us. ~Adrienne~

  10. Pam Schroeder Avatar
    Pam Schroeder

    I have some Wine and Roses too – I love the deep burgundy and pink together. To see what’s in bloom in my central Kansas spot…check my blog. This is my favorite time of year.

  11. angelaHow luck for you that you inherited some lovely flowers when you moved in!

  12. jane james Avatar
    jane james

    hi angela! lovely fun surprises in your garden. the dogwood takes me back to my college years in virginia. ooooh so lovely! and the vinca is here in california. i too love the colorful flowers, and the dark green foliage. i agree with dee: add some roses for scent, color and pruning chores (!OUCH) to keep you busy… LOL. i do love my roses, but i worry about water usage. keep posting those lovely photos of all you do!! jane

  13. It’s kind of fun to see what is going to bloom in the garden, when you don’t know all what was planted there by previous residents. Of course, that can happen in my garden, too, when I forget what I’ve planted.Thanks for joining in for bloom day. Late is better than not at all!

  14. I’ve always loved snowballs too! I don’t have one now, but I’d been seeing them in bloom lately and wishing I had one. Your dogwood is beautiful too!I’m so excited about watching David Cook tomorrow night on AI! I just know he’s gonna win!

  15. Well my goodness for someone without much of a garden you sure have a beautiful garden!!!Very inspiring…someday I’ll sort out all this green thumb stuff. I just love how romantic gardens look but have no idea how to do it for myself. Practice, I suppose!Thanks for sharing all the beauty from around your garden.

  16. Lynne Laura Avatar
    Lynne Laura

    Angela,How lovely your blooms are! My hubby and I are planning to plant a pink dogwood in the front of our house in the fall…they are just so lovely. We have a snow bush too but it grows big and full but few blooms. Not sure what I will do with it, I know I am going to hack at it! I have been disappointed that it doesn’t bloom much.I think I will run out when I get home tonight and take some pics of my pink lilac bush…now that is full to the brim with blooms.Thank you for sharing. Kindredly, Lynne Laura

  17. Just beautiful! Love that magnolia. I wish there was more blooming at my house but I’m being patient. Kind of.

  18. Yolanda Elizabet Avatar
    Yolanda Elizabet

    For such a young garden there is already quite a lot in flower. Love the dogwood and the weigelia. I had a weigelia in my old garden too and a viburnum davidii. 🙂 Like you I love Periwinkle and even named one of my kittens after it: Perry Winkle.Happy gardening Angela and have a look at my blog you will love what is on display there.

  19. Oh! So pretty! You are a wonderful photographer!

  20. Hi, just found you blogging around 🙂 I love garden/gardening, and anything to do with it, so I really enjoyed seeing all your pretty shots… lovely garden! :)Cielo

  21. Those are such beautiful shots! It all looks so lovely!!

  22. Betty Jo Avatar
    Betty Jo

    Congrats on your new home Angela! Your photos are gorgeous, especially the pink dogwood. xoxo

  23. Your flowers are beautiful. It would be nice to see a pic of your entire yard.

  24. your flowers are beautifulhugs Beth

  25. What a gorgeous garden! I love the Japanese snowball and the dogwood blossoms are so pretty…Kathy

  26. these are gorgeous! i wish my garden looked like yours!

  27. Theresa N Avatar
    Theresa N

    The Japanese Snowball plant is beautiful.

  28. I love seeing flowers from around the world!Hope you feel better soonxx

  29. Love your pictures…the flowers are so beautiful. Living in the Southwest…the flowers and such are a different kind of beautiful. I love my garden…don’t get me wrong, I just wish I could have hydrangeas, magnolias, etc…

  30. Claudia F. Avatar
    Claudia F.

    I’d love to see more pictures of your garden, I just love

  31. HI THERE, I hope that you will get well soonLove the pitcuresLINDA

  32. These plants bring a lot of memories back to me.My paternal grandparents lived right next to door to our house. She and my mom had so many varities of plants!!!!! Your are quite beautiful. My garden is growing. Thanks for sharing your photos. Cindi

  33. It seems to me you have many pretty flowers! I love the bright blue flowers. Are they low growing or tall? I think they would make a lovely border if they are low growing. Thanks for sharing the pics.

  34. Your garden is lovely. I epsecially love the Lesser Periwinkle. We have been in our home for almost two years and I was really missing my old yard.We had a beautiful backyard and hydrangeas that I absolutely loved. They were beautiful. This yard has full sun for most of the day in the summer so hydrangeas were not a viable option.Our back yard was just grass until this past week… we have been working and now have lots of new plantings. I can’t wait for them to mature a bit.

  35. Avatar

    i love your flowers and i especially love dogwood. they smell so wonderful don’t they?! i plan on planting lots when i own my own home. :)i’m off to visit you some more angela!jenny

  36. These blooms are so pretty. Nothing makes me feel better than watching petals emerge!Kelli

  37. I love all the flowers blooming now. We have some french provence lavender that is blooming beautifully and it smells so good! I hope to plant some more blooms soon too.Yeah Spring!Bella

  38. Looks like you inherited some lovely plants. That’s so fortunate. Our house had exactly one bush when we bought it.

  39. fated follies studio Avatar
    fated follies studio

    that last comment was from me, sorry.jenny

  40. What pretty flowers!

  41. I wish my garden looked half as good as yours…it is coming along nicely. You must be proud.

  42. April showers bring May flowers.

  43. Beautiful pictures! I just love this time of year when everything is starting to bloom and the smells of late spring are wonderful! My lily of the valley is finally starting to bloom and it smells sooo wonderful.

  44. I’m waiting a few more weeks to make sure everything is blooming before I do my garden post! I’ve got a lot of purple, orange, and white in my garden—white and purple delphinium, Russian Sage, coreopsis, purple and white salvia, orange poppies, a new kind of orange cone flower, and white daisies. Then I love to fill in with ornamental grasses and annuals (petunias, marigolds, and kimono flowers). And lots and lots of lavendar–every variety I can find! I, too, love common periwinkle—especially when it flowers! Can’t wait to see how everything comes together in your garden!

  45. Lovely dogwood photo–when I lived in Kentucky, where I’m from, our front yard was full of them . . .

  46. What a beautiful flower! I’m praying for this quilt and posting all I can!

  47. I love the Japanese snow ball too. I’ve always wanted one or a few but really have no idea where to put it at the moment. We moved into our 1959 ranch style home in April and this yard is a blank slate like yours (minus the things they sporatically planted like an azelea next to a fern next to a rose).

  48. Michele Avatar

    Your pictures came out beautifully. I wish I could have a “real” garden, too. Sigh…someday. It will be fun to watch as you add to

  49. love love love your garden tour… Today what is blooming our our garden are the Peonies, my #1 fav flower and also coral bells. some iris. and that’s about all until the daylilies and shasta daisies bloom. come visit me…I have more photos of flowers than anything else on my blog. I’ll be back! Hope i win!

  50. How beautiul! I love the Japanese snowball that is so pretty!! I am really REALLY hoping my hydrangea’s bloom this year!! thanks for sharing!! 🙂

  51. miss_k_p Avatar

    Beautiful flowery surprises for you! The bluebells are so pretty…thanks for sharing your new “finds!”

  52. I loved looking at the blooms and all but since I have a black thumb, I feel so bad! I think the David Viburnum is my favorite. When I feel the need to have blossoms in the house (weekly in bathrooms and the kitchen) I go to my local farmers market and get their cut flowers that they grow themselves.

  53. Lovely gardens, im am jealous!

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