how things change

Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, your popular host, Mani the purebred border collie, here after another long and very chilly absence to bring you up to date on the latest news from our house and garden. You may remember me from such change-related posts as “Another Change”, among so many, many others.

Here I am in a characteristic pose.
You can see there’s still snow in the garden. It’s 69 degrees F (about 20.5 C) right now, but last week we had three very chilly nights, with snow again. I think it got down to about -5 F  (-20.5 C) at least one night, in some parts of the city, anyway.
It was very unpleasant, even for me. I had to wear my boots on a couple of walks because it was so cold during the day.
The guy I live with was going to drive the car over to the car dealer’s, last Monday, before it got cold, but discovered that the cars available on the website weren’t there yet, so he put down a deposit on one. This is kind of exciting, even though he hardly goes anywhere, preferring to spend time with me at home. I can be delightful, if you didn’t know.

The ice on the paths is still quite thick, even though it’s so warm.
All of the snowdrops were totally exposed to the cold before the snow fell; it was about 5 F (-15C) when that happened.
The guy I live with felt sorry for the snowdrops, but they were all perfectly fine.

Here are some Galanthus elwesii that have escaped from the “main flock”.
The “main flock” itself looks okay, even after all that traumatic weather.
You can see that the snowdrops have seeded around a bit. There are some other species here, but Galanthus elwesii is the main one, and over the last quarter century or so they’ve started to go a little crazy.
We have a lot of ants in the garden; ants do the work of spreading the seeds around.

Except with this one.
This is Galanthus alpinus var. bortkewitschianus (really),only known from a tiny area in the western Caucasus. It’s sterile, and so doesn’t set any seeds.
It doesn’t grow very tall because it’s weighed down by its name.

With all the warm weather of the last few days, the crocuses are up. This is Crocus ancyrensis ‘Golden Bunch’.
And some of the spring-flowering colchicums, too. This is Colchicum bulbocodium (which you can buy as Bulbocodium vernum; DNA or something showed this was really a colchicum, but the name Colchicum vernum was already taken).
So that’s it. We hope there are no more deep freezes.

I’ll leave you with a picture of me hunting for voles on my morning walk. I didn’t find any, but it was still fun.

Until next time, then.

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22 Responses to how things change

  1. Yore Crocussess are so speck-taculur Mani an Guy!! Wee nevurr seen such deep yellow color beefore!
    An you still have snow an ice even with a warm tempyture?!?!?!
    You are lookin guud Mani….
    ~~head rubss~~BellaDharma~~ an ((hugss)) BellaSita Mum

    • paridevita says:

      Thanks. Yes, there’s still snow on the ground from New Year’s Eve, even though it was so warm yesterday and today. We’re predicted to get another six inches of snow tomorrow night. You can imagine what the guy I live with has to say about this.

      • Mee-yow mee can emagin his werdss Mani!! Purrhapss sum H-Bee-O werdss??
        It iss a hole 36 deegreess today! An they said 55 F, HAH!
        There iss sum meltage happenin tho’ so BellaSita Mum has been out on patio sweepin up soggy peenut an Nyger seed shellss….iss sorta a big mess. It DOES look bettur now.
        An shee moved mee Solar Lite inn garden so mee can see it out bedroom window!

      • paridevita says:

        It’s 47 here and the temperature is dropping. They say rain, and then ten inches of snow. We could do without this, of course. Lots of colorful words here lately. The rain is needed in autumn, not now.
        There’s a huge mess of Nyjer seed shells out in back, but there’s nothing growing there right now so I guess it’s okay.
        I like the solar lights here. There’s a nice one hanging on a post, which you can sometimes see in pictures, but the solar panels deteriorated and so it doesn’t turn on. The rest of them work, though.

      • Guud Greef Mani! Rain? Then snow?? Furry unfair!!
        Our wee snowdropss are peekin up thru soil…mee gotta Get BellaSita Mum to get THE mew cammyra werkin….
        Solar litess are just so kewl aren’t they?

      • paridevita says:

        It’s raining now. Rain, on top of snow. Well not very much snow, but that’s still highly unusual here.
        The solar lights are on, too.
        I had to tinkle, but wasn’t so sure about tinkling in the rain, so the guy I live with went outside with me.

      • Mee iss happy Guy went with you fore yore tinkle!! Iss guud to ahve company speshelly when it rainss!
        Iss 8 Cellseeus today Mani!!! mee iss out inn Condo! HURRAH!!!!

      • paridevita says:

        It snowed yesterday, but today it’s nice. Slushy snow.

      • Slushy snow suckss BIG time Mani!!!
        Glad it iss nicer out now…..

      • paridevita says:

        It is nicer, but it’s supposed to snow again Monday night.

      • Did youss’ get snow Mani?? Mee frnedss inn Mile High Collyrado did! 😦

  2. Paddy Tobin says:

    Good to see a change arrive at last and the need for boots while walking in the garden will soon be a thing of the past. The snowdrops are remarkable in how they come through such conditions so well and bloom as though there had never been a bother. The G. alpinus var b. is very attractive – one I’ve never grown. Onward to even warmed days, a little rain, a new car etc etc.

    • paridevita says:

      Well, one can but hope. The guy I live with has abandoned most of that hope.
      We’re supposed to get ten inches of snow tonight. Twenty-five centimeters. Again. And it’s supposed to snow yet again on Monday.
      That’s not unusual at all, for here, in March. What is unusual, and extremely annoying, is that snow has been on the ground here for seventy-six straight days. This is getting ridiculous.
      Anyway, I guess they grow that variety of Galanthus alpinus by twin-scaling or chipping.
      Curious that it’s only found in an area of .02 square miles (6 hectares, according to a certain snowdrop book that once was offered for eleven thousand dollars on Amazon); maybe rodents moved the bulbs around.

      • Paddy Tobin says:

        The rodents haven’t moved it to my garden as of yet but I think it is what we might describe as an interesting plant rather than one which would make a significant contribution to the garden.

      • paridevita says:

        The guy I live with says it’s more of a curiosity, really.

  3. tonytomeo says:

    So, . . . Galanthus elwesii is a straight species rather than a cultivar or garden variety? Is it what would be considered to be a ‘common’ snowdrop? I am not certain, but I believe that, if I ever get snowdrop for the garden, that it would be this or another ‘common’ species. The garden that I would put them in is not developed yet, so there is plenty of time to identify the snowdrop that I might add. (Shading trees must be removed.) I do not understand the allure of snowdrop, but would like to eventually try one type, just to see what all the fuss is about.

    • paridevita says:

      It is, and the most common one in the trade. In fact, though all species (and cultivars) of Galanthus are protected by CITES Appendix II, export of wild-growing G. elwesii and G. woronowii is permitted. About a million bulbs a year.
      So you can find what they call “bulk” G. elwesii available from some bulb brokers, at low prices.
      It takes drier summer conditions than some other species.
      A lot of fuss is made, and money spent, over cultivars, but that’s another story. Some of the older cultivars do better in gardens than the newer, often vastly more expensive ones. (Someone just paid $2,419 for one bulb. Not a typo.)

      • tonytomeo says:

        Exactly! Not only do I not understand the allure of snowdrop, but I REALLY do not understand why cultivars that do not perform as well as the simple species are so much more expensive. I could justify spending extra money for cultivars that I really want, but only within reason. Heck, I could spend a few dollars for white grape hyacinth, but some expensive grape hyacinth is downright ugly and puny.

      • paridevita says:

        There are a lot of snowdrop cultivars worth growing, like ‘S. Arnott’, ‘Magnet’, but the expensive ones are mre for collectors.
        Also a lot of plants (not snowdrops) the guy I live with would never consider growing in the garden here. I mean a lot. But we don’t talk about those.

      • tonytomeo says:

        Oh, I do not doubt that they are worth growing. I just want to limit my selection to one or maybe two of the most basic of cultivars, and preferably the basic species. I know it sounds odd, but that is what I prefer for some species. For rhododendrons and roses and camellias, I would be more selective with cultivars.

      • paridevita says:

        Galanthus elwesii certainly takes drier conditions in summer than most other snowdrops.

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