The tulips in front of my house are in full bloom today — about three weeks to a month earlier than previous years. In 2009, I wrote about these on May 13, and commented that they had lingered longer than usual due to cool wet weather. On the same date in 2008, the blog noted that the purple tulips at the back of this photo were opening up.
Here it is April 15, and the full regalia of tulips are blooming. The squill (Scilla) that are among the earliest blooms in my yard have bloomed and faded. (The picture at right was taken almost a week ago.) Friends have commented that their crocus are done already and my next door neighbor’s azaleas are opening up. Magnolias all around town are in bloom. In back, the fritillaria look dainty and lovely. In 2009, these were in bloom around May 5.
Our “perfect” winter ended abruptly in mid-March, but it seems dicey to go ahead with spring planting because we are still a month from the last frost date for this area. I have planted some cool weather crops, of course, but am wondering: Has anyone taken the plunge and planted the rest of their garden in anticipation of no more frosts or cold weather? Who is a garden gambler? And, what have you done?