The earliest spring bulbs bring some of the greatest excitement in the northern garden, entirely out of proportion to their dainty size. Their exquisite blooms are eagerly awaited, not only for their beauty, but as a sign that the garden is starting its next cycle.
Despite the fresh spring snow, the Puschkinia libanotica ‘Alba’ (white striped squills) are standing firm. They have temporarily halted opening their buds, since it’s been snowing for over 24 hours. These bulbs are planted in a garden bed on the northern side of my house with many other spring bulbs. I’ve grown the blue striped squills before, but this white variety was newly planted last fall. They are the first of the small bulbs to bloom this spring. I’m not sure if they naturally bloom earlier than the blue variety, or if they have an advantage, being 2 feet closer to the warm house foundation. These bulbs are planted next to the front porch, where it’s easy to see and appreciate them. In a larger garden, or farther from the house, it is too easy for them to disappear from view unless they are planted in large patches. This is a hardy little bulb for a cold climate.
You can see a better picture of how Puschkinia libanotica ‘alba’ looks when its blooms actually open in this later post.