Garden Bloggers' Blooms Day: Surprise Flowers

Apple blossom alongside swiftly maturing apples

In some ways flowers blooming out of season aren't that surprising here at VP Gardens, but I don't think I've found them in midsummer before. This week, I was surprised to find not one, but two instances on my daily walk around the garden. Here we have a few damp apple blossoms shining out in the rain; even more surprising seeing the tree is already bearing a goodly crop of maturing fruit.

A first season blooming for this Hellebore

If spring to summer blooms isn't that much of a stretch of the imagination, then winter/spring to summer might just do it in the shape of this hellebore. It's so comfortable in what it's doing, it's put out another bud since I first spotted it in flower. This is one of a new batch I planted out last year, which were just small plugs when I got them. A few flowered at their allotted time in January, but many more didn't, which I put down to them not being mature enough. Perhaps it's showing it's all grown up now?

I've been pondering the reason(s) why these flowers are blooming so far out of their season. Sometimes mild weather can extend the flowering season (as seen here previously), but these are spontaneous flowerings rather than continued ones. It's not unusual for my apples to bloom a little in autumn, especially after a dry summer. I think that might be the clue here too: you may remember I said my 'Herefordshire Russet' apple was showing signs of stress when I wrote about June Drop last month. Here, my 'Red Windsor' is probably showing another sign of the stress of that time (and I guess that's the story with the hellebore too). Now we've had a good drop of rain, it's decided to bloom again; the tree's instinct for self-preservation has kicked in. I'll keep an eye on whether the blossom starts to form into fruits - I've tied some wool to the branch so I know where to look in future. Whether April/May's drought has longer term implications for next year's blossom has yet to be seen.

Do you have any surprise flowers in your garden this month?

Garden Bloggers' Blooms Day is hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens.


Comments

  1. Surprises in the garden can be nice! I was surprised last night to see plums on a sucker "tree" under a cedar! They are edible too! Small, but good. I have terrible success with fruit trees.

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    1. That sounds marvellous Lisa. I love plums - I miss them from the allotment.

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  2. I've had some spontaneous blooms this year too. Some of my hellebore seem frozen in time. They still have blooms on them and we are in 90 plus degrees. I have a spring blooming magnolia that also put out flowers this month. The crazy, crazy weather is stressing out the plants! Enjoy your blooms!

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    1. My neighbour's magnolia throws out the odd bloom or three at various times of the year, so I wonder if that's quite common Karin. I can't imagine hellebores in 90 degree when we associate them so much with winter!

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  3. I've always had mixed feelings about plants flowering out of season as in if they are confused what about the insects pollinating them. I like surprises though. That's a nice hellebore and maybe you assess right about it. Enjoy iui t while it lasts.

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    1. Good point Shirley. I know there's quite a lot of concern over climate change and how that affects flowering times and how many birds time their broods with food availability. If the wildlife can't feed then it affects the whole food chain...

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  4. I'm thinking it's the weather too. I don't know what it's been like where you live but here in South Yorkshire we sort of had summer before spring this year. I like the lemon coloured Hellebore

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    1. Exactly the same here Rob. The lemon hellebore now has three blooms - it's loving it's new season!

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  5. I love surprises in the garden! Just as long as they don't turn out to be thorny weeds of doom.

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    1. Plenty of those here too, lurking just out of sight in the top photo ;)

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