Wring, Sprinter, or Hate-pril?

Just a few days ago, I was lamenting that if my tulips choose to come back after the first year, it was usually as lone tulips, even though I planted them in groups. Then I wrote about how thrilled I was that the tulips were performing in spite of the cold temperatures, so I was going to plant tulip bulbs every fall to express my gratitude that they even bloomed at all. And now I am even more enthralled with tulips because this lovely group of tulips pictured above started blooming today and IT IS A GROUP I PLANTED TWO YEARS AGO. Sorry for all CAPS there, but given the way April has treated us in the midwest (and elsewhere), I am pretty excited to see these tulips at all, and then to see that they are a whole group and they came back a second year. I'm sure you understand. I'm going to plant a lot of tulips this coming fall. I'm thinking about starting a tulip appreciation society. I'm putting tulips on my top 10 favorite flowers list. I'm going to write that ode to tulips that I posted about earlier.

And there is other good news to report. Look at this Korean Spice Viburnum (Viburnum carlesii). It might look a bit scraggly at first glance, but look beyond that to see the blooms today.
Oddly enough, on the left side as you look at the plant, the blooms are dead and brown. On the right side, near the top, the blooms are hanging, but somewhat blooming, and closer to the bottom (where presumably the blooms were kept warm by radiant heat from the ground), the blooms are almost normal. It's not a total loss! I just hope some of those blooms hang on until Sunday so I can include them in my Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day post for April 15th.

This April has been almost a fifth season, after that big-time warm up in late March. Maybe we should name this new season? My aunt said that cold weather when the dogwoods are blooming is called Dogwood Winter. However, in this case, the dogwoods were not yet blooming when it turned cold again. So how about calling this newly discovered fifth season Wring, as in we are wringing our hands with worry about what this cold is doing to all the plants? Or maybe Sprinter, as in get this season over with quickly? Or how about Hate-pril, as in we hate this month of April? Let me know your favorite name for this new season, then I'll let the people know who name the seasons, once I figure out who they are.


  1. Carol — I feel almost guilty reading about your April travails. Here in Austin, despite some odd temperature fluctuations, my garden is blooming wildly. After my first try at Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day last month, I've been looking forward to posting on Sunday. As I walk through the garden, I find myself saying, come on now, surely you can open by Sunday or, like you, hang on, hang on, just a few more days.

    Thanks for the chance to pay attention to my garden in a new way.

    — Susan

  2. Susan, I'm jealous of your Austin weather goodness! :-) Enjoy it...

    Carol, I absoutely love calling this "season" Wring. It's perfect. Last night, with the snow falling, I had to compensate by baking up a batch of brownies -- can't remember the last time I did that. The snow melted today, but it's so very unfortunate...


  3. The returning tulips look darned good, Carol, even if it is Hatepril! I had some that came back for years and years, while others made one blooming season and that was it. I do remember the returning tulips were almost always in extremely well drained places, some near the sidewalks with plants like lambs ears and artemesia that were hardly ever watered.

    While you hope your blossoms will hold on through rain and cold for bloom day, Susan and I hope ours don't blow away in the predicted 25 -35 MPH winds... what a world, what a world...

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  4. I have a Walter's Viburnum that is three years old and doing nicely. So far it has been evergreen but I hear it loses its leaves in really cold winters. I guess we don't get those down here in Houston anymore.

  5. I vote for WRING. Or what about tulip winter? You know, we are supposed to get heavy snow this weekend :-(

  6. The tulips were teasing you by skipping a year. Probably needed to store up food and energy to burst forth this year.

    We planted a V. carlesii which promptly died. I bemoaned the loss because the nursery where we bought it had a no return or refund policy which they have prominently displayed. the sign said 'we sell only top quality plants which should do well if planted properly'. Well, bad on me. I never had a problem with viburnums dying after transplanting them and we have about 8 plants of differing varieties all growing too well. V. carlesii started to die as soon as I put it into the ground. :( It was quite expensive too. Glad to see yours is thriving. I think it is one of the most beautiful Viburnums.

  7. I'm with your sister - I think we should call it Wring.

    Some of my Burkwood viburnum flowers were nipped by the frost, but I think they'll still qualify for GBBC.

  8. Hi Carol,

    Carolyn in Chicago. I'd go with hatepril except last year it was 80 degrees on this day. How about 'whether' ? Whether or not spring is going to come ?

    As I said in my post today you know winter is bad when the Chicago Tribune editorializes it.

  9. I vote for Wring. That seems to cover both those of you who might get an unexpected blizzrd in April and those of us who never know when it will hit the upper 90s. Last year on April 17th it was 99 and on April 18th 98 degrees in Austin (and it has happened as early as February: onFebruary 21, 1996 the high was 99!).

    Oy! I sometimes think I'd like to live somewhere where it snows but every year about this time I start dreaming of cool summers.

  10. Hmmmmm, are you suffering from a bout of Tulipomania, Carol? If so, take a few deep breaths and then lie down for a bit with an icebag on your head. Hopefully you'll feel much better tomorrow.

    BTW you don't have any Dutch ancestors, do you? Because if you do, you're done for! It's going to be Tulipomania all the way. :-)

    Glad to see your tulips doing so well. Have a nice weekend!

    PS Even though it's early Spring, we have Summer now in Holland, 25 C!!! Weird, but in a good way.;-)

  11. How 'bout we just call it OVER!!!??

    As far as I am concerned, it's a part of an unpleasant memory!!

    (love your sweet pink tulips!)

  12. It's still like late November here, too...in the middle of the South. We were teased with a warm late-March. But soon, it will be so hot that I'll strangely wish for this weather again. I'm as fickle as the weather! ;)

    Your tulips are gorgeous!

  13. Gorgeous tulips..I have none..only daffodils all bundled up and braving the cold winds with 2C/that is 34F temps. with a threat of {{{{snow)))
    What will I have to show on ~Bloom Sunday~! Perhaps I can run around in the morning of with a heat lamp hummm...now I'm off to place warm blankets on my daffodils! :(NG

  14. I have to agree with Sissy, I want to call it OVER too. For this former Alabama girl snow in April is just so disheartening. I can't believe we're supposed to get more snow tonight and tomorrow. My poor plants. But on a positive note I'm thankful for the pretty day today.
    Carol, your tulips are beautiful, hopefully they will last through this next system.

  15. YAY! I'm doing a happy dance for your tulips, Carol. :) And I like "Wring," too... "Hatepril" is more fun to say, but "Wring" can be used longer.

  16. Susan... Don't feel guilty about all your blooms. Soon you will be having a heat wave, and I'll have blooms!
    Genie... Funny how we are resorting to "winter" activities, and food to make ourselves feel better about the weather!
    Annie... I have heard that tulips should not be planted where you do a lot of watering in the summer. Between that advice and picking some better varieties, I'm pretty excited about the possibilities next spring!
    Gary... Would you like us to send some of our cold "Wring" down to you to test your Viburnum? :-)
    Sister with the Homestead... Shhhh... if we don't talk about the snow, maybe we won't get any!
    Ki... Actually, those tulips did bloom last year, their first spring. I love the Viburnum carlesii so much I have two, one in front, one in back.
    Entangled...Absolutely blooms that are just a little nipped by cold count for Garden Bloggers Bloom Day!
    Susan... I'm not sure which would be worse, extreme heat or extreme cold at this time of year!
    Yolanda Elizabet... No Dutch ancestors that I know of, and what if I want to have tulipomania?
    Sissy... I'll add "Over" to the list of possible names for this fifth season!
    Southern Heart... Thanks for the comment, I checked out your blog for the 1st time, I'll be back to read more!
    Nature Girl... I'm looking forward to seeing your daffodils on Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!
    Blackswamp Girl... Good point about being able to use "Wring" longer than "Hatepril", though do we really want this season to last that long?.

    Thanks all for the comments!

  17. Carolyn Gail... Didn't mean to not reply to your comment. "Whether" is also a good idea for this fifth season!

  18. Robin...It was a pretty day today! I mowed my grass, so it will look good with the snow on it. :-)


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