Home of the Practically Perfect Pink Phlox and other native plants for pollinators

Friday, February 24, 2012

Tommies On My Hillside Sing A Spring Song



The Tommies are in bloom!  I wish you were here to see them!  I know they must be making a statement because Mr I Do Not Garden or Blog thinks they look wonderful.

He's right, they do look pretty wonderful.


Just look at that flower, it's covered in golden delicious pollen.

 But, you don't have to take my word for it.
The hillside that has charmed me for decades!
 You might remember my inspiration!  A dream of a hillside with tens of thousands of Tommies.

 I think I've finally found my hill.  It was covered with forsythia and made the entrance to the house feel crowded.  Early last fall we cleared the shrubs and planted  Juniperus virginiana 'Gray Owl', Panicum virgatum 'Northwind',  stone unearthed in the clearing process and of course Crocus tommasinianus.

So far the Tommies are unscathed by the resident rodents!  The hill has perfect drainage, great soil and plenty of sunshine. They just  need one other  thing to insure that they naturalize with ease and
also planted on Tommie Hill
It sure looks to me like the bees are doing their best to make sure there will be more Tommies at Clay and Limestone!
xxoogail

Gail Eichelberger is a gardener and therapist in Middle Tennessee. She loves wildflowers and native plants and thoroughly enjoys writing about the ones she grows at Clay and Limestone. She reminds all that the words and images are the property of the author and cannot be used without written permission.

43 comments:

  1. Wow, it looks great already. You're well on your way to having a car stopping experience. Great shots of the bees.

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  2. What riches you have! I love the joys of spring. Beautiful!

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  3. Okay, so I want to understand how this glorious vision evolved ... when you cleared out the hillside of forsythia, were the crocus then able to flower and be seen, or did you plant these gazillion beauties, one by one, yourself? Breathtaking! Thanks for the great photos.

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    1. sandy, We cleared the hillside, then planted 5 'Gray Owls', a few Ilex glabra and 1000 Tommies. That sounds like a lot of Tommies but, really they are so tiny, I place a lot of them in one big hole. Thank you! gail

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  4. Gail you inspired me last year and I planted hundreds this past fall...no sign of them yet but I am hopeful....yours look so happy and make you want to just dance on air :)

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  5. Beautiful, Gail! I am glad the rodents are leaving yours alone. It gives me hope!

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  6. Just lovely...and that rock is a great find!

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  7. Beautiful! What a great idea for a hillside full of them! I have a few in my garden that surprised me the other day when I went outside - they are so small that they kind of blended in with the ground. I'm hoping they will eventually multiply to fill up the area and make more of a statement!

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  8. They look so beautiful in a mass planting, and close up too. I have never been able to get mine to spread and multiply - I've only succeeded in feeding the animals :-( Maybe large volume planting is the answer - you've inspired me to try.

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    1. I've read that if you plant them 4 inches deep the squirrels and chipmunks might not get them.

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  9. I have been waiting all winter to see the Tommies again. Looks like yours are well on their way. I had a very poor show from my 1,000, hope it is better this year.

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    1. Oh Deborah, I remember all of your efforts and hope you have a good show this year. Hope you are well and happy in your tropical paradise. Carol

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    2. Deborah, So sorry~I hope they show up for you this year. My original 1000 have had a poor 2nd year. I thought they might since the slope stayed wetter than I knew they preferred. My hope is that this is the better spot!

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  10. Marvelous Gail!! Wow! Beautiful photography too! Oh to be a bee . . . diving in!! Yummy! Have a lovely weekend.

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  11. How beautiful Gail! I love them in mass plantings like you have done. New blooms and spring so close what could be better.Have a wonderful weekend.

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  12. In your garden I see what others are hoping for, and working towards. There's something about a crocus. I remember them from Switzerland.

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  13. Lovely! I will have to some of these for my own.

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  14. The tommies, and your captures of them are breathtaking, Gail! Your hedge replacement is so lovely, the stones really add just the right touch and those junipers are perfect! May your tommies prosper and multiply forever!
    xxxooo
    Frances

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  15. It looks great. The inspiration coming to life. Love seeing those bees too!

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  16. Nothing looks more promising than a bee butt. Beautiful Tommies. They look so inviting. Happy Spring.

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  17. Okay. You've done it for me!! Love your photos and the bee-eautiful bees! ;-) YOU are having Spring. We'll be there before too terribly long!!

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  18. Your crocus look beautiful! For the first time ever, I think my daffs are going to open before my crocus. Weirdness!

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  19. Super cheerful! My tommies will probably show up in another month. Right now the snow is pounding down outside, coming sideways because of the blustery wind. So it's great to see your fun photos :-)

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  20. Wow, you've got LIFE !!! Looks wonderful. Can't wait to enjoy some color in my yard.
    Hoping your winter has been a good one.

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  21. Absolutely breathtaking Gail! Well worth the winter wait!

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  22. Those Tommies do look wonderful! Great bee captures too!

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  23. Thge field with the Tommies ... the stuff of dreams! Beautiful!

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  24. Such little beauties. Wish we could grow them here.

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  25. Magnificent! Absolutely beautiful!
    1,000 bulbs! Wow!

    If you remember my Wildflower Wednesday post, I had a tiny wildflower that had no ID. I am pretty sure that it is a Field Pansy.

    Have a great week!
    Lea

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  26. Really a beautiful view of spring.

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  27. Oh my goodness, that last photo of the bee just made me want to get up and dance! Your Tommies are lovely and really sing spring. The new front garden is so welcoming, Gail; I'm sure passersby are going to enjoy getting a better view of all the beauties that lie behind the former hedge.

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  28. Don't you love it when a dream comes true? What a beautiful garden that is...breathtaking.

    All of your hard work has paid off.

    Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

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  29. Hats off to those Busy Bees ensuring a future for so much of nature's bounty.

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  30. Oh Gail, so very, very jealous sitting here looking at your hill of Tommies! I'm working on a lawn with Tommies along edges and in grass islands with other bulbs. I love them too and each year I add more... but that hill... seriously swooning :-)))

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  31. Gail,

    We have maybe 15 kinds of crocus and no tommies. By the time I think about ordering them, they are always sold out.. Yours are so beautiful I'm totally jealous. At least two kinds of my crocus have not faired well here. Went to Pine Knot's Hellebore Fest and crocuses were bust already, but the hellebores woW..

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  32. Gail, how many did you plant? I planted some but they don't look as beautiful as that. Perhaps I need to find a hill too. And plant way more tommies!

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  33. Loved the pictures of the Tommies. Especially the ones where you have captured the bees visting the flowers. You ought to find some sort of wildlife photographic comptetion and enter them as they are so clear.
    Gordon Rigg

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  34. I love seeing that pollen on the bee's knees. You dream of hillsides of crocus and I dream of hillsides and swaths of snowdrops. Next year I will plant both along the road hillside and think of you when they bloom.

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  35. How lovely to see spring unfolding at your place! I need to find out where I can get some Tommies. Bulbs seem to be something limited for local purchase, so I need to look into ordering some. Awesome photos of the blooms and bees!

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  36. Gail, oh what a beautiful sight for those who pass by! Here's to many more tommies in the years to come!

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Let us be grateful to people who make us happy;
they are the charming gardeners
who make our souls blossom.


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