Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day – February at Helen’s Haven

Finally, a few are opening.  The spent much of the winter ready to bloom.

Finally, a few are opening. They spent much of the winter ready to bloom.

My husband is looking at me like I’m nuts. It is a Sunday morning and I’m at my computer like its Christmas morning. I’m so excited to see all the blooms across the country. Carol at May Dreams Gardens started Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day. This day allows us all to see what is going on elsewhere, but it also organizes me to reference what is blooming on this one day of each month. I’m already anticipating how February 2009 will compare with February 2010.

When I read other GBBDs, the first thing I want to know is WHERE YOU ARE. What is your gardening zone? This grounds me. It not only puts me in a place, it allows me to learn what is happening now in various zones. As such, for those who need to know this as well, I’m in Raleigh, North Carolina, zone 7b.

It is confusing out there.  We have had the worst winter, yet the Forsythia started to bloom already, so has the vinca minor.  Both usually  bloom around my birthday, March 3.  So what gives?  Who knows.  As I look around the gardens while I do this photo shoot, I notice a lot of winter burn.  This winter took it’s tole on Helen’s Haven and Helen too.

This February Gold was the first rise, others soon to follow

This February Gold was the first to rise, others soon to follow

Galanthus love

Galanthus love

Look at those freckles!

Look at those freckles!

Just kicking off to a good Hellebore season

Just kicking off to a good Hellebore season

Finally, the Edgeworthia are opening.  The flower heads were displayed since fall

Finally, the Edgeworthia are opening. The flower heads were displayed since fall


The Forsythia will be in full bloom in about 10 days. I love this rangly thang

Vinca minors are popping up everywhere.  This is why I let it grow.

Vinca minors are popping up everywhere. This is why I let it grow.



These two Tommies are closed because it is still early.  They will open up their little eyes to 500 other friends.

After I posted this, I found a Vernocia ‘Georgia’ and something else which I’ve already forgotten.  I’m loosing it, so what’s new?



  1. Winter makes us all lose it temporarily, it seems. But you’ve got some nice blooms outside right now, which is wonderful to see.

  2. Gail said

    Helen, My spouse is sitting at his computer so he can’t make faces at me blogging away. It is fun to visit everyone on Bloom Day. Love your Daphne…I just brought one home and it is sitting inside, the scent is deliciously sweet. Not sure it will like Clay and Limestone, but that’s what containers are for. Right! Have fun today…you are lucky to have forsythia blooming…it really shouts spring! gail

  3. joco said

    Hiya Helen,

    Thank you for visiting and saying hello. What always strikes me is that between areas so far apart like NC and the UK in this case, there is such similarity of vegetation, but at the same time plants that are unique.

    Edgeworthia is totally new to me, but the vinca, major or minor, white or blue, forsythia, Hellebores and others we could both pick.

  4. I lived in London from 1982 – 1985 while I was at University. I don’t remember, though, what was going on in the winter – shame on me! I like to think I made up for it the rest of the year as I took the Yellow Book and made destinations.

  5. Lynn said

    Helen–you have a lot going on outside! Lots of wonderful variety. This is my first year to try hellebores (and a lot of other cold weather things here in upstate NY). If mine don’t do much, at least I can enjoy yours. Thanks for the nice comment today.

  6. Anna said

    I am envious of your hellebore blooms. Mine are nearly there but not quite. It’s great to see what is in flower in other parts of the world 🙂

  7. Jenny said

    Hi Helen- Thanks for visiting my blog. I think you have acid soil there which would explain the hellebores. They are the prettiest little things. Your garden has a very woodland look to it. If you see our woods here you would see very little growing. The deer and rabbits take out every little green thing that isn’t poisonous and then some. I haven’t seen forsyithia either but jessamine is a good substitute for the late winter color.

  8. Kathy said

    Helen – I think you are 3 weeks ahead of us – nice to get a preview of what is coming 🙂 BTW I love the front page of your web site – wonderful use of color.

  9. Sue said

    I like to know the zone any time I look at a blog, so I recently put my zone and state at the top of my blog, for people like me. I didn’t think to put it in my GBBD post, but when I look at others, I’d like to know, too.

  10. Sue said

    Nice blooms, by the way. I love those hellebores, and am having trouble waiting until time to plant to get some.

  11. VP said

    Hi Helen – I chuckled at your comment re your Forsythia’s early blooms. We’ve had the worst winter and it hasn’t knocked back the primroses who were quite contrary and started blooming last July. Looks like we both have plants that don’t read the manuals!

  12. Hi Helen, I think your idea about the zones is a good idea. I’ll include it from now on. I live in zone 7A, BTW. Mine garden appears to be a month behind yours. Nice to see the blooms. I love bloom day too.~~Dee

  13. MacGardens said

    I had a great time looking through your website. Do you know what variety that Daphne is? It looks very much like mine. I’ve been calling it Daphne aureo-marginata but I’m not really sure where I got many years ago.

  14. Les said

    The world of garden blogging has me fascinated in the differences between regions. Here I am not that far from you in 8a and my forsythia is still tightly budded and the only color on vinca is green. I suspect that inland areas tend to ride the roller coaster of temperature extremes, while we are moderated by the bay and ocean. I know how glorious the Daphne odora is, but I am resistant to buy one knowing how easy they are to kill. Until then, I will enjoy other people’s.

  15. Hey MacGardens – It’s Daphne odora varigated. Only slight margins, but varigated, none-the-less

    Hey Kathy – Thanks, I have a new web guy. Now if only he can keep my e-mail up!

    Hey Les – I tell my clients, “It may just up and die you you, but its worth it. If it dies, replant it.” You would think I was the one with the retail store;-)

    Hey VP – Yes, and I’m glad they don’t read – it benefits me more times than not!

    Hey Sue – Thanks for visiting!

    Hey Lynn – This is your first year of many Hellebores, if you go like the rest of us to hoard Hellebores – welcome to the club. I’m heading to Clarksville, VA in a couple of weeks for Pine Knott Hellebore Farm open house. Here is where Judith Knot Tyler resides – the co-author of “Hellebores. If you don’t have that wonderful book, run don’t walk, and get it!

  16. Zone 7b–how wonderful. I think you are more than a month ahead of me–zone 6b (NJ). I can’t wait.

  17. Hi Helen, you have so much going on. The edgeworthia interests me, for I have two young ones, no blooms this year I guess, for nothing looks even remotely like what you have shown. It has been a harsh winter here in 7a too. Happy bloom day!

  18. Helen– my emails to you have bounced back. I’ve tried your old email address. Any suggestions?


  19. Here in Massachusetts we have a ways to go before we have outdoor blooms. Like you I love seeing what is doing all across the country. It gives me hope even though my GBBD posts will be indoors, probably until april.

  20. Nikki Smith said

    You’ve got some great looking flowers already. Nice going, Helen!

  21. Ilona said

    I’ve been losing it for a couple years now1 🙂 don’t know why I’m smiling about that, though.
    Love these varied plant portraits … your bloom day is beautiful indeed.

  22. Adam said

    Hello, I just saw your blog about flowering plants.
    It´s February 5th 2010, a year later than all the messages above.
    I live in Catalonia, (autonomous region of north east spain) and my zone is 7 I think. Temperatures go down to -12ºC (10ºF) or lower some years, but we don´t much snow and day temperatures are always above 0ºC (32ºF).
    At the moment I have in flower a strange bush which I can´t remember it´s name it has small pale yellow flowers, like hamamelis, but it´s not , because it grown on alkaline soil. They have a sweet scent. The leaves are long and green and some suprisinly have stayed green on one trunk all winter, even thow temperatures have gone down to -13ºC this Winter so far. The other truncks lost their leaves in early winter. So strange. I also have some cyclamen coum, that have got buds. And some bulbs are comming out, only leaves though. My grandmother has viburnum bonatense in flower and also snowdrops. She has a similar climate than I do, but with more snow and windier even though she lives at abouy 800m of altitude. My garden is about 490m. altitude.
    Well that´s all. waiting for the real Spring to come!
    Adam Macià-Parris

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