A Punch Of Red

There is not a lot of red, bright red, here in the Fairegarden.

A little goes a long way. (Do you see Kitty lying in the path, right under the fairegarden watermark?) There are a couple of Walmart tulips in clusters, the opening photo, and some T. ‘Orange Purissima’ along the brick edging.

In springtime, tulips are just the shot of pizzazz all that refreshing spring green needs with their reddish hues. This is a species, Tulipa orphanidea flava.

The lawn/meadow is coming along nicely. Spring and summer bulbs added to the Kentucky blue grass and tall fescue allowed to grow tall and flower makes for a happy place for people and pollinators. More will be written about the lawn in the future. The tulips shown above have just begun opening. Fifty were planted last fall. The red dots will enliven all that green, white and yellow of Narcissus jonquilla simplex in the foreground. It goes without saying, more are needed.

Tulipa vvedenskyi ‘Tangerine Beauty’ has been blooming along the side of the garage for nearly ten years.

Somewhat more subtle in size and color is the little Epimedium ‘Rubrum’. The downward facing flowers and short stature makes for some interesting photographer posturing.

The addition of the red glass balls to the party in the pond has brightened the dark lagoon look there. Flanking the pond are two reds that bring a smile.

The Japanese cutleaf maples are leafing out, ready or not. Mister Old Man Winter might have a late freeze in his bag of tricks yet, but we hope not. The chartruese of the hellebores and emerging Hosta ‘White Feather’ complement the red leaves of Acer palmatum var. dissectum ‘Garnet’. Not seen but still in existence nonetheless is A. ‘Crimson Queen’ on the other side of the pond.

Athena holds court over a potpourri of plants, but her ever constant consorts are the red and silver leaved Heuchera ‘Silver Scrolls’. A smidge of red comes from the Fritillaria meleagris bud in the lower left quadrant of the image.

Even the unfurling stems of the Maidenhair fern, Adiatum pedatum begin life with a rubyish richness, to later turn into shiny ebony stems with gossamer green leaves. The oldest of the hypertufa troughs has developed a miniature tapestry garden of its own, with some things dying out, leaving the survivors to carve out more territory. Ajuga ‘Silver Bells’ is coming into sapphire bloom and volunteer forget me nots add a lighter shade of pale.


Little bits of red are just the accessories needed for the spring garden finery.


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29 Responses to A Punch Of Red

  1. Chickenpoet says:

    I also have much red. It seems to be my tulip theme; although yellow is a close second; and then there is the mixture of the two. I am so glad to see the life and beauty again. My pigsqueak bloomed too!! Love, CP. Oh, and the tree peony has emerged. Thank goodness I didn’t pull it up.

    Dear Chickenpoet, your garden must be a wonderland of blooms! It does feel good for the flowers to return to cheer us as winter leaves, or returns, like right now! Your conditions must be very good. I look forward to learning more about your tree peony. πŸ™‚

  2. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    Believe it or not I was shopping for clothes yesterday and they had some bright red tops out for spring. It seemed an odd color to me for this time of year until I read your post. Of course it is the perfect color to brighten our spring. Love your reds dotting the garden.

    Hi Lisa, thanks. Red is great for highlighting the garden or a wardrobe, a little goes a long way. And it looks good with jeans! HA πŸ™‚

  3. gail says:

    Frances, You have me thinking about the reds in my garden~ The red greggiis I planted by the purple chairs and bench didn’t return (order more) and many of the pink tulips I bought potted at a big box store were red! All together they look a bit clown pantish. But Spring is such a short time and I am loving the punches of color:) Athena looks stunning in her portrait and I love the fern fronds unfurling. xxoogail

    Thanks, Gail. I am sorry about your salvias but the tulips being red is giving you a whole new look. You know how I feel about all the colors mixed together, like nature does it, is a good thing. Athena makes me smile, as do you. πŸ™‚

  4. So many pretty things. Love the Tangerine Beauty tulips and your glass balls are very Chihuly-like. I am looking forward to reading more about your lawn-meadow!

    Hi Karin, thanks. Those species tulips are the best. I don’t know why I keep trying different ones when I know that Tangerine Beauty will return faithfully and is big enough to make a splash. The lawn/meadow is coming along and might be at its best when the grasses bloom. They are forming buds now, so it won’t be long! πŸ™‚

  5. Les says:

    I love the lawn/meadow, more people should have them. But what would we do with those people who are obsessed with perfect lawns, maybe they could use their skills to grow corn instead? Nice of you to have a watermark to shade kitty.

    Thanks Les. It is an ongoing battle with my husband about the lawn/meadow, but he has obviously lost! My ammunition is that it can be mowed low at any time, going back to lawn/lawn. But of course we know that can’t happen while (fill in whatever flower is blooming) is at its peak. He eyes that clover with malice, but I am working on enlightening him about that. He knows I can wear him down. Kitty does like a shady watermark. πŸ™‚

  6. Helen at Toronto Gardens says:

    Vibrant red, especially in spring, speaks to something in the soul. The simplicity of your last shot of the unfurling fern makes it particularly stunning. Happy spring blooms, Frances!

    Thanks, Helen. I like the urfurling ferns nearly as much as the fully furled. I wouldn’t want a whole sheet of red, or would I? The dots of it against a green background appeals to my sensibilities, like a red scarf with a black outfit. Happy Spring to you, my friend! πŸ™‚

  7. I want to see that fairegarden someday. I really do. I love everything about it.~~Dee

    Thanks Dee, come on over!!! The welcome mat is out for you. πŸ™‚

  8. Larry says:

    So much color and excitement at your place…. and your photography is so interesting and lovely… your posts certainly have a unique personality that are such a pleasure to partake of!! Larry

    Thank you for such a sweet comment, Larry! I appreciate your thoughtfulness. The goal here is to write the posts that I want to read, with lots of photos that are interesting and illustrate the point. πŸ™‚

  9. Layanee says:

    I do love that bright red of the tulips in the springtime. Must add some more. I am still in crocus time here but your garden shots give me hope and refresh the spirit.

    Hi Layanee, thanks for visiting. Spirit refeshment, what an astounding idea! I am never drawn to the reds, but need to add more, as well. πŸ™‚

  10. Glorious! The Japanese maple is fantastic with the chartreuse, and the fern is a stunner.

    Thanks MMD. The maples are now fully leafed out and looking dadburned good. Somehow the hellebores read chartreuse from afar, along with the gold creeping jenny and white feather hosta. I love it right now by the pond. Need to take more photos before the colors dull. Thanks for the push! πŸ™‚

  11. My Kids Mom says:

    I have to treat tulips as annuals here in Atlanta, but that one pop of red coming out of purple and blue pansies is worth it. I keep one large pot just for those purchases each winter.

    Most of the large tulips are annuals here as well, Jill. Sometimes a sprinkling will return, but not reliably. Best to keep buying them potted in late winter from the big box store. Pansies make the perfect companions. πŸ™‚

  12. Greggo says:

    Love the last photo. Looks like your about 2-3 weeks ahead of us jayhawkers.

    Thanks Greggo. We seem to be moving faster than usual here, but checking the records, we are right on schedule. May your Kansas spring come soon! πŸ™‚

  13. Lona says:

    Athena has a beautiful spot to hold court from. Your maple is so pretty with its leaves unfurling. The spot of red looks so good in your bed.

    Hi Lona, thanks so much. The Athena corner has gotten much attention since it is the view from inside the house. She is happy with her kingdom, empire, plot. Those red bits really enliven a garden. Note to self… πŸ™‚

  14. Diane says:

    Such a nice display. I like the ‘little bit of red goes a long way’ strategy as well. The only red in my border will be some tulips that grow in the shade (that I discovered last year) and some Oriental poppies.

    I cannot see the kitty! Lovely photos.

    Hi Diana, thanks. Kitty is solid gray and is very good at blending in. He is stretched out directly under my watermark, nearly invisible! I agree with the little goes a long way with the red, but perhaps might add more. You never can tell. πŸ™‚

  15. ricki says:

    I look forward to hearing more about your meadow. I don’t seem to be as good at wearing down the lawn advocate. Pointers, please?

    HA Ricki, as to wearing someone down, my advice is to never give up! Persistance, and gentle, but continuous blathering about the wonders of clover, pollinators, not poisoning the earth, etc eventually get through. It takes years, though, be warned. πŸ™‚

  16. Red is my favorite color! I love it in the garden, but I don’t have that many red flowers there, for some reason. I love your species tulip photo with the backlighting from the sun! Love the fiddleheads, too!

    Hi Kylee, thanks for stopping by. Red is such an eye catcher, we should try to add more of it here and there as an accent. The species tulips are so sweet, and good at returning too. I love the emerging fern fronds as much if not more as the fully opened leaves. πŸ™‚

  17. Hi Frances, Are ALL these things blooming right now?? Unbelievable (well, to me). We are just now getting into Spring – what excitement! πŸ™‚ Your Rubrum epimedium is a “keeper!” and has found itself on my wish list.

    Hi Shady, thanks. About a million things are blooming here, I can’t even keep track of them all. Your time is coming, hang in there! The Epimediums are all good, it took them a while to spread, but they now cover quite a bit of ground. Sulphureum is the biggest and most vigorous, rubrum is more polite. Lilafee is small and shy, but cute. Those are the three I know the names of that are growing here. πŸ™‚

  18. Nicole says:

    Those first two tulips are just stunning. I love red flowers most, and love orange flowers second. If I could I would have red flowers planted all over my garden!

    Hi Nicole, thanks for adding in here. I need more red, for sure, and have decided that red, orange and purple would be lovely together, tulips come in all those colors! πŸ™‚

  19. Holley says:

    I love red, and have a lot of it in the garden. Your touches of red here and there look so warm and cheerful. Your pictures are gorgeous.

    Hi Holley, thanks. I need to work on adding more red, it really draws the eye. πŸ™‚

  20. Linda says:

    Beautiful Spring shots, we’re waiting for it here, rather impatiently. I love the group of hellebores, I just planted some last year and am waiting to see them bloom. Should be soon! So it’s nice to see yours. I love reds, and there is nothing like red tulips in the Spring. Beautiful pics!

    Hi Linda, thanks so much. May your hellebores make many babies! Red tulips are wonderful. I need more, it goes without saying. πŸ™‚

  21. Rose says:

    I don’t know if it’s the red or the sun shining down on every scene that makes these photos so appealing, Frances. The pathway looks so inviting; I’d love to follow it wherever it takes me and explore all the nooks and corners of your garden. And, of course, I would stop to pet Kitty for awhile:)

    Thanks Rose, I would love for you to come stroll and snoop in my garden. Kitty would enjoy it, too. This might be the best time here, April. πŸ™‚

  22. Janet says:

    My tulips were planted late and the white ones are just about done, but, alas, the red ones haven’t come all the way up yet.
    My Garnet made it through the move and is glorious right now. Red sure does pop!

    Hi Janet, I am so glad for your Garnet success! It is such a fine tree and gets little fanfare. White and red tulips are a match made in heaven. Maybe yours will get on schedule in the future. πŸ™‚

  23. Lola says:

    I do so admire your colors brought on by the many blooms. I like the blue & yellow with a pop of red & it really lets the eye appreciate all that is in front of them.
    Not so here, maybe I don’t do things right.

    Hi Lola, thanks. The eye is drawn to those red dots. All gardens are a work in progress, that is the fun of it, a journey not a destination. πŸ™‚

  24. Lisa says:

    Delightful Frances! Poetry in the garden.

    Thanks Lisa. I am glad you enjoyed it. πŸ™‚

  25. I love your punches of red, and all of the other colors, too! We have to have the big silver maple in our front yard cut down, and I’m going to have to negotiate with my husband how big of a planting area I’m going to get out of it. I told him I’d plant annuals for now. I’m thinking about planting Mexican sunflowers there for the Monarchs, but need to figure out what else would go with their bright orange blooms.

    Hi Sue, thanks. I am sorry about your loss of the silver maple. That is the same type of tree that gives us shade in our back garden, it would be sorely missed if it had to come down. I don’t even want to think about it. I hope you can have a very large planting area, and thinking about butterflies is a good plan. We mix all colors, but you might like blues, purples, yellows and whites for complementary hues for the orange. Perhaps you could give the hard sell for butterfly bushes, all butterflies adore them. Good luck! πŸ™‚

  26. sequoiagardens says:

    I too have become a convert to “Little bits of red”. Here, in late summer, it is the various Salvias that provide it. Halfway down Magoebaskloof, as one gets into the sub-tropics, there are naturalised stands of a short red salvia by the roadside that I have admired for 20 years, but never stopped to investigate/steal and try…

    Hi Jack, thanks for visiting. It sounds like you have a plan for adding some little red bits to your own garden in the works. Good luck. Salvias are a go to for red in summer/fall here as well. We are lucky that they self sow in the gravel paths and don’t mind being moved too much while small and if watered. πŸ™‚

  27. Racquel says:

    You have just the right amount of ‘punches of red’ in your gorgeous garden Frances. Those red glass balls were a great addition. πŸ™‚

    Thanks, Racquel. I need to make sure that more red is added for each season, it enlivens the scene so well. I love the red glass balls, P A R T Y! πŸ™‚

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