Six on Saturday – Buds on the Solstice – December 22, 2018

Friday, December 21, 2018: the rain stopped and the skies cleared so I put on my chicken boots and wandered¬† through the standing water in my garden. I wondered what I would find on the shortest day of the year. It turned out there were lots of signs of spring even though it’s months away. Some of these are clearly flower buds (rhododendron) but some may be leaf buds.

  1. There are buds on the rhododendron Roseum Elegans. Some buds flowered in our late warm fall, but there should be some blooms in the spring.

rhododendron flower buds

2. I wouldn’t have noticed the purple hues of the lilac buds if I wasn’t out taking a close look at twigs.

lilac bud

3. A flower bud on the “Kleims Hardy” gardenia (Gardenia jasminoides). The shrub didn’t look so good in the fall, but the leaves are now a healthy green.

hardy gardenia

4. Viburnum Kern’s Pink. I don’t know if these are flower or leaf buds.

viburnum Kern's Pink

5. I had a hard time finding buds on the azaleas. But I didn’t know until I saw the photo that the leaves have tiny hairs. Does someone know what their purpose is?

azalea buds

6. Apical bud of a Bottle Brush Buckeye (Aesculus Parviflora) that I pulled from the ground near a colony at our local library reading garden. I help take care of this garden so have some gleaning privileges. The twig is about a foot tall and I have it in a “nursery” bed. If it survives the winter I’ll need to find a good place for it as it gets quite large.

bottle brush shrub bud

That’s my Six on Saturday, a meme started by The Propogator, a UK gardener. There’s always something interesting in the garden if you just stop to look.¬†This is the link to the rules if you’d like to join in.