Another Look At Early Spring In Portland

(click on any picture to enlarge)

OK, I am getting obsessive. I know that. But show me a 4 season climate person who is not, right now. The long Winter is changing as sure as we sit here into some healthy Spring Power. I don’t know about anyone else, but I am drinking real nice and deep. Another walk, in another section of my neighborhoods, has resulted in yet more pictures. It isn’t time yet to show the previous pictures in time lapse yet – a thought I am chewing on – but I also think these serve my purposes well enough.

I made mention of Pieris Japonica the other day, complete with some luscious looks at their gurgling mass of blooms. I also mentioned I liked the Taiwanensis varieties a lot as well as the “Rosa” – redder – blossoming variety. Check this one out:

In fact, let’s just continue the walk without a lot of talk……….here are some Crocus I was thrilled with:

(I love that “woodland” look, the “naturalized” bulbs that somehow just seem like part of a gorgeous yard.)

This Star Magnolia is getting ready to bust out. I planted a few of these in Reno for people who had never had one before and they became instant fans every Spring and thanked me profusely. Since he and his wife were big home builders, it made the right impression for all sorts of reasons. It’s funny what a plant can do.

This extremely-pruned Photinia has changed from the green look of Winter to a decidedly red sheen from all the newer leaves busting out. It is always sort of arresting the effect a single plant can have.

Here’s an early look at your standard average early-blooming Chinese Pears:

(These we will return to. These guys really put on a show.)

The nearly sheer cascading branches in the foreground of these pink-blooming early Cherries is a gorgeous European Birch tree I have always particularly liked. The street signs add some real amateur authenticity!

Landscape Window Shopper Alert: I just always liked the set up of this home. A very modest, simple landscape, replete with a bunch of Rhododendrons which will make a gorgeous showing this Spring – their buds are huge. Very tasteful and perfectly proportioned, with those nice Firs standing tall, a cool-looking sort of Summer Place. We’ll be back by here with some killer Rhodie pictures later.

And finally a picture of our neighborhood park. I post this to illustrate a very typical North West look – plenty of Douglas Fir trees. In this arrangement, closely grown, they develop a literal canopy and the quietest walkways. A naturalized forest floor is being created as they grow with the grass which would probably grow in the forest were it not for the “duff” and debris the trees constantly produce from winds and the aging process. These are groomed by the Parks and Rec Department, so we get the benefit of trees and a soft green floor. Pretty cool.

4 thoughts on “Another Look At Early Spring In Portland

  1. I’ve only had one chance to experience a Northwest early spring, but it was a memorable one. Thanks for reminding me how cool (both literally and figuratively) it was. Not seeing a landscape like that all the time it all looks pretty exotic to me!

  2. Thanks for sharing your spring walk with your readers, Steve. Here in Ohio we aren’t quite there yet, but it’s coming. Spring blooming bulbs and shrubs are just starting to pop. Unfortunately, the forecast for the remainder of the week isn’t very encouraging. But the back of winter has been broken. Hallelujiah!

  3. I also enjoyed the spring tour, I like how you included the natives in with the imports. Love those crocuses, they may be common to some but never to me. And I finally found out what Pieris japonica is. And congratulations on the star magnolia story; you’re right, working with plants does set mysterious forces in motion (or maybe just tunes us into them).

  4. Crocus is probably one that we will add at our home.

    We saved an older Magnolia, even though it has some sunburn on the bark due to a tree removal next door some years back before we bought this home. Anyhow, the blossoms are a nice sight right now.


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