The Arch City Gardener

Journeys In St. Louis Gardening and Beyond


Spring blooms

I planted tulip bulbs last fall and love seeing them come up. Tulips are one of my favorite flowers. In addition to planting them under this tree, I have tried them in a pot. We’ll see how they do. They’re a little slower to bloom. I know Jason over at Garden in a City has had lots of luck with potted tulips. Fingers crossed I do too.

A real show-stopper (as usual) is the rhododendron under the eaves of the house. There are two more fat with flower buds ready to open. And the azaleas aren’t far behind. One advantage of working from home is I can sit out among all the spring time blooms during endless hours of conference calls. How is your garden a refuge during COVD-19?



Budding Spring

Like a baby, the garden is in a constant state of growth and change now and each day’s walk-about reveals something new. On a windy, feels-like-a-lion Sunday in late March the rhododendron, compact buds just a few days ago, are beginning to bloom. And I scouted a lone peony emerging. I imagine there were peonies in the yard at one time and this is what remains. I moved it last year to what I think might be a more suitable location and thereby improve its odds of developing beyond the lowly spike you see here.

budding rhododendron budding rhodo II peony

1 Comment

It’s Looking More Like Spring

It seems like forever but it won’t take long now until we’re in full fledged Spring in St. Louis. Forsythia, Bradford pear, pink magnolia and star magnolia are in bloom. After reading the Steve Bender’s, aka the Grumpy Gardener, opinion of Bradford pear trees, I can no longer drive past one without laughing. According to Grumpy, having one in the front yard is akin bragging that you have a toilet in the house. So funny! He also says its spring flowers smell like fish. I wondered what that awful smell was! Of course, they line the streets and boulevards of St. Louis and are popular in neighboring front yards. And they look great.


Tonight’s backyard tour highlight are the blooms on my PJM rhododendron. This is one of three rhodos growing in the yard and the one that was protected most from our severe winter. Oddly, though, it always blooms ahead of the other two. Go figure. Coming along nicely is the Oakleaf hydrangea I planted three years ago. This plant loves the spot it is in (north side of house and protected in winter) and was laden with blooms last year.

What’s blooming in your neck of the woods?