Spring-flowering garden plants to make you smile...

Bluebells at winkworth Lisa Cox Garden Designs We're 4 weeks behind in the UK garden world and this weekend saw the return of snow and biting winds. We're all getting a bit fed up with wrapping up in lots of layers so I thought it would be nice to brighten up your week with some spring-like images...something to get you in the mood for what's hopefully to come.

A lot of these pictures were taken at this time last year - it's always interesting to compare things year on year.

April Spring Bulbs Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Narcissus Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Depending on which variety you choose, there will be a narcissus for each part of the spring season.  'February Gold' is a particularly early flowering variety.  As the name suggests, flowers appear in February.

Tulips at Wisley Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Tulips come a little later, but they look amazing planted en masse.  The image above was taken at RHS Garden Wisley a few years ago - planting bulbs in this way really does create much more impact.

Pink tulip Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Orange & yellow tulip Lisa Cox Garden Designs

I noticed this weekend that there are a few trees starting to come into blossom and normally the early show of flowers appear on the ornamental cherries.

Prunus cerasifera 'Nigra' Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Prunus cerasifera 'Nigra' is one of my favourite.  It has pale pink flowers in spring and deep purplish leaves which then turn a wonderful rich colour in autumn.

Prunus pendula 'Pendula Rosea' Lisa Cox Garden Designs

There are many shrubs that flower in the spring.  The flowering currant (Ribes sanguinium) is one of the first to flower.  Clusters of small star-shaped flowers appear on the bare stems, quickly followed by deeply veined green leaves...

Ribes sanguinium Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Stachyurus praecox is another shrub that produces flowers on the bare stems, normally from February to April - it's really elegant ...

Stachyrus praecox Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Pulsatilla vulgaris grows well in any well-drained soil in full sun...

Pulsatilla Lisa Cox Garden Designs

...and Hellebores appear early in the year and flower until late spring...

Helleborus orientalis Lisa Cox Garden Designs

My last picture is the bud of a Magnolia tree which by this time last year in my garden was already coming into flower.  The buds are tightly closed right now, but I long for the day when the flowers appear as this will truly be a sign that winter is behind us.

Magnolia grandiflora Lisa Cox Garden Designs


(Images: Lisa Cox Garden Designs for The Room Outside)