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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day - February 2012

scaled parrotia
Parrotia persica 'Persian Ironwood'
I almost forgot about GBBD again this month...granted, I didn't actually think there'd be anything blooming in February. I realized this morning that the few lingering blooms I showed in my last post got lopped off when I cut those plants (mostly the Knautia) back this past weekend. Then, suddenly, I realized I DID have blooms this month...on my Persian Ironwood trees!

Parrotia duo
Persian Ironwoods (Parrotia persica) are related to Witch Hazels and have similar (if not quite as showy) late winter/early spring flowers. I have to admit, they aren't especially showy...you could be forgiven if you walked right past them and didn't notice them at all, still...they garner me a place for this month's GBBD! I'm looking forward to spring beginning in earnest...with the bulbs already up and growing, it won't be long.

Check out May Dreams Garden for more of what's blooming in other bloggers' gardens around the world!

44 comments:

  1. Hi Scott,

    Lovely phhotos and a very nice shrub! Hmmm I might have to check it out and see whether I can get hold of them here :)

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    1. You should look into them...they are quite hardy, I believe :-)

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    2. oho~beautiful~~

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  2. I can see the similarity to Witch Hazels. Beautiful rich colour and quite an unassuming flower.

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    1. Totally...they aren't quite as showy...but are nice, nonetheless

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  3. As always I am in awe of your photography. Such a pretty tree!

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  4. I think your Ironwood is quite striking! And I'm sorry...I know it's poor form to do this but, well...I've got more flowers than you in my garden right now!!!!!!! What are the chances? I don't think this could happen any other month of the year.

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    1. hahahahahahaha...so mean ;-) It's my own fault, really...I just never cared for most of the plants that flower during winter. It doesn't help that most of them are shrubs I wouldn't have room for anyway!

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  5. Well they might not be showy to you but I think they are beautiful! I hadn't seen those before- great shots!

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    1. They are lovely, to be sure...subtle but lovely

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  6. Happy GBBD Scott! I believe spring is emerging for us here in the PNW! Hooray! Cheers, Jenni

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    1. You too, Jenni...spring is here, for sure!

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  7. Just winter here. I suppose I need to plant hellebores or witchhazel. Glad you have something.happy gbbd.

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    1. If it makes you feel better, I don't have any thing other than this tree blooming right now...so we're practically even ;-)

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  8. Will they still open more than what is shown in the photos? I love the photography more, but i am sure they certainly warm the area which are now in winter.

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    1. They open just a little bit more...but that's about it...I remember last winter I waited and waited...I was sure they must open more than that!

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  9. Scott,
    I never saw a picture of the flower of Parrotia persica before. I have the upright cultivar 'Vanessa' in my garden but it has never bloomed. Now I know what it will look like. Thanks. You have spectacular photos, as always.

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    1. Thanks, Michael! I had the same result when looking for photos of the blooms...nothing very conclusive. I think if this tree ever becomes more popular, we'll get used to seeing them blooms, for now, they still have their novelty ;-)

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  10. Convinced a neighbor to plant a Parrotia to replace a dead maple! She fell in love with it.

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    1. They really are quite lovely trees...the branching structure and fall color are superb!

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  11. Wonderful! I hope you'll show photos when they're in full bloom. Spring is coming!

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    1. Well....that pretty much is full bloom for them! They really look like they ought to open up more...but that's pretty much it!

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  12. Really cool. I planted one of these for a client once, but it still hasn't bloomed and I'd never seen photos. I like the flowers.

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    1. I had never heard of them until we chose it as our street tree from Friends of Trees 2 years ago. It was between that and a Paperbark Maple...on a lark, we chose this :-)

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  13. I think any flower blooming at this time of year is great! I like the color of these!

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  14. How wonderful to find an unexpected bloom! Very pretty - I've not heard of Persian ironwood before.

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    1. They aren't very common yet...but they may become more so...I'm seeing them around Portland more and more in the past few years.

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  15. I love it! I will have to check if it is hardy to zone 5. I bet that as it matures, it will grow in impact. Happy GBBD! Glad to see one thing growing in your garden again! Julie

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    1. I think they are hardy that far (5b maybe). I'm counting on it...the fall color is quite nice...variable too :-)

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  16. Unexpected blooms are the best!

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  17. I've only today noticed that many of the trees in my neighborhood and in my garden are showing similar buds. Spring really is almost upon us.

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    1. I know...isn't it great...it sort of snuck up on us here in Portland!

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  18. I can't believe you have a Parotia! One of my favorites. They have the most beautiful bark ever! I may try to convince my father to plant one of these where our old blue spruce fell. He is Persian so it shouldn't be too difficult to persuade him.

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    1. Very cool! I agree...the bark is really lovely...especially on older trees I've seen. I really like the branching structure quite a bit...very sinuous...and the fall color is wonderful.

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  19. I love this tree. Anything that offers such beautiful rich color during the winter is a prize. I have a very young witch hazel that has been pruned by the rabbit. Hope it grows a little taller this season. Here, ten minutes from the Canadian border, I have bulbs emerging. I fear for them but secretly hope for the earliest spring ever, cannot wait.

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    1. I'll cross my fingers for your Witch Hazel...they are so stunning!

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  20. I don't think I've heard of that tree, but I sure like it! It does remind me of the witch hazels I've seen on other blogs. I'm ready for spring, too.

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    1. Totally, Sue...they are in the same family as the Witch Hazels...which you can totally tell when you see the leaves...they are that classic herringbone pattern.

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  21. I've only seen Parrotia bloom once. If I recall, they do not last long, but I know this tree is grown for much more than its flowers.

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    1. Yeah...they last for a month or so...and aren't terribly showy...just a bonus compared to its other good traits ;-)

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