Spring is Here, Take That, Snowpocalypse!

After our horrid---by Pacific Northwest standards---winter, I had doubts anything at Chickadee Gardens would survive. The following photos prove me wrong!
Have a look and tour a bit of some springtime fun.

The hell strip has made a comeback! Armeria maritima up front, a native plant but this is a variety - Victor Reiter I believe. Still, they are lovely and blooming their little heads off! The shrubs on either side are Spiraea douglasii, a native deciduous shrub with pink clusters of flowers to come later in the season. The tulips are from our dear friends in the Netherlands. Thanks, you guys! 

Ceanothus 'Dark Star' has not quite bloomed, but when he does there's a little critter sitting there waiting for the pollen to arrive. Looking forward to seeing this bloom.

I purchased this Anemone 'Green Fingers' from Joy Creek last year. I moved it so much it died last spring. Or so I thought. Not only did it come back, but every place from which I moved it a little patch is growing. What a pleasant surprise! 

Cotula hispida. These little "silvery buns of goodness" were toast last year. Heather of Just a Girl with a Hammer fame, these are for you. A whole field (eventually) of silver buns of goodness. They will spread and have little yellow UFO flowers bobbing around. Some plants are just too good not to replace, so in that regard, I have beat the Snowpocalypse by living close enough to Xera plants that I can just replace them. Ha! Take that, crummy weather!

All of my Polypodium scouleri, another native (and evergreen!) small fern, did fabulously and is showing signs of new bright green growth. 

The native sword ferns are each laden with new growth, so interesting and beautiful, I think. 

Our sweet dogwood is blooming away. It lives in a pot. We had to root-prune it the last couple of years, but there are finally a good amount of blossoms this spring. 

A new addition to Chickadee Gardens, a wavy cloak fern or Cheilanthes sinuata from Cistus Nursery. Native to the American Southwest, likes sunny dry conditions with cool roots. Go, Buddha!

Eco roof is looking fine, filling in nicely. It withstood snow, rain, ice and rain and rain and rain.
Thank the Lumber Gods for 4x4 wooden posts!

Lonicera ciliosa, our native honeysuckle which has gorgeous orange flowers, deciduous. Took a long time to get established, but it's finally taken off and ready to bloom.

Maidenhair spleenwort and oak fern have decided to take over this little container.
I think I'm glad it's contained! Both are native plants. 

The new strip is filling in nicely; Hobbes is helping, of course. 

The shade garden is popping up, the Podophyllum is taking over. See the little leaf in the foreground middle? That's a spreader. Uh oh. 

Mukdenia I purchased last year came back! I thought it was dead as it completely disappeared after slugs had a party on it. Glad it survived and it looks like no slug damage this year, with blooms, too!

The Gala apple tree in blossom. The mason bees are busy! 

Penstemon barrettiae (native to Klickitat County, Washington) and native Sedum oregana looking better than ever.

Yucca filamentosa purchased from Home Depot recently. I think they have the tag wrong, as Danger Garden pointed out in this post from last year. I think I scored a Yucca gloriosa?? Anyone??

 Hosta 'Mouse Ears' from the Cistus "tough love sale" last fall. So cute! 

Acer circinatum 'Pacific Fire' - a discovery of a fab version of the native vine maple thanks to Scott at Rhone Street Gardens. Looking good! 

Vaccinium ovatum, our native evergreen huckleberry in bloom. These are a staple at Chickadee Gardens, so reliable and a backbone of the garden. Bees love them. Speaking of bees,

 Finally, a photo of one of our mason bees! Yay, they are hard at work filling up the new nest! 

Super close-up cam. You can really see the difference between common flies and mason bees here.

So Snowpocalypse did take the life of an old pot which had an Arctostaphylos 'Greensphere' in it. The pot crumbled, I got this new big one for it. The Arctostaphylos then decided to turn its leaves all black. Aaack. So another new yucca "filamentosa" (not really filamentosa, see above) has a brand new pot, too. 

Grape vine native to California, Vitis californica, is pushing out some new leaves. I honestly thought this would be fried due to the bad winter, but it's doing just fine ... thankfully, as it's growing in the cat  fence that I blogged about recently here and helps to conceal it.

Native Sedum spathulifolium 'Purpureum' - gorgeous new growth. These all look better than ever.

This Arctostaphylos 'Sonoma' has seen better days. The cambium is green....maybe it will make a comeback? 

Another Arctostaphylos 'Ponchito' is putting on new growth and looking fab....its neighbor, however is not:

My A. 'Martha Ewan' is so sad, but again, the cambium is green so I'm hoping . . ..

Rosa nutkana looking great; a deciduous rose native to the Pacific Northwest.

So there you have it, a springtime tour of some of the activity in the garden. What's new in your neck of the woods? Thanks for reading and until next week, happy gardening!


  1. I know enough about Yucca filamentosa to know that it should have filaments, but unfortunately, not enough to know which you have instead. Poor Arctostaphylos, I hope they eventually come back. Everything else looks great! Mason bees for me next year, for sure. I feel right now like I can't spare the brain cells on setting them up properly.

    1. I know, Alison...poor Arctostaphylos is right. So sad. Bees, yes indeed. When you are ready, I can give you some cocoons if you are interested.

  2. I'm jealous of your blooming potted Dogwood. I've had one in a pot for several years and it has never had a single bud. :(

    1. Hi Mindy, thanks for commenting! Well, don't be too jealous, it took two years of serious root-pruning to get this one to bloom, which was a lot of work. Does yours get full sun? I think we moved ours a few feet to get more sun and that also helped.

  3. Oh those sad Arctostaphylos, I hope they pull through. I noticed a few more branches turning brown on one of mine yesterday, thankfully it seems to be limited. I saw those yucca with the messed up label at both Home Depot and Lowes. Such a strange thing! And lastly I must ask. Did that purple succulent in the middle of the Sedum oregana spend the winter there?

    1. I know, aren't they pathetic? So sad, I do not have the heart to rip them out yet. Same thing with the Pittosporum you really liked. No leaves on it but there it sits, a stick in the ground. As far as the purple succulent, you are very observant, Ms. Danger. That was planted last month, a Fred Meyer score.

  4. fifi lafontaine3:42 PM PDT

    Oooh how is it that everything looks so perfect and it's only April?? I am jealous of your podophyllum. Hope mine gets as big as yours!

    1. April is the magic month, my friend! Your Podophyllum will get that big, look out! Mine had three leaves the first year, then about five, then the next about 8 and now something like 29.
      I'm afraid, very afraid.

  5. Great spring foliage with all the shades of green. Love the mason bees.

    1. Hi Donna, the greens are sweet, aren't they? The mason bees are special, we love hosting them.

  6. How nice that 'Green Fingers' is providing you with a moveable feast. I thought my losses among potted things was a result of the "snowcopalypse", but maybe I just need to embrace root pruning. You scored with 'Mouse Ears'. My success rate with "tough love" plants is a mixed bag.

    1. Green Fingers has treated me well after I bad-mouthed it. Bad Tamara. I did score with three Mouse Ears, they are so sweet. The Cistus tough love sale is great, I paid I think $3 each, maybe $2. My success rate is also a mixed bag with the tough love plants, these have done just about the best of any so far.

  7. Yeah, silver buns of goodness! Some of my arctostaphylos look sad and brown like yours. Is that a graptoveria poking out of your sedum oregana? That is gorgeous!

    1. Yay! go buns, go! It is a Graptoveria 'Debbie' (Fred Meyer) poking out. You and Danger, you two have the eagle eye for all things zone 9b.


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