GPOD on the Road: Anemones and Erythronium at the HCP

The GPOD is on the road again, and today friend of the GPOD Cherry Ong is taking us on a visit to the gardens at the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific (HCP) in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. She saw a lot of beautiful things there, which we’ll be sharing over the next few weeks, but today the focus is on spring ephemerals. Ephemerals are those wonderful plants that pop up early in the spring, flower, and then go dormant. For many of them, this strategy is an adaptation to living under the shade of deciduous trees. They get up and do their growing early before the trees above leaf out completely and take all the light. These were thriving under the canopy of trees in the Doris Page Winter Garden.

spring-blooming plant with light purple flowersWood anemone (Anemone nemorosa, Zones 5–8) is a little spring ephemeral that thrives in woodland gardens, spreading moderately to make clumps of spring blooms.

white wood anemoneThere are many selected forms of wood anemone. This is the variety ‘Bracteata Pleniflora’, which has extra petals, some tinted green.

clump of white wood anemoneThe ‘Bracteata Pleniflora’ has made a nice clump.

wood anemoneWho wouldn’t want this in their garden welcoming spring?

anemone with double flowersThis anemone is ‘Vestal’, which has double, pure-white flowers.

large patch of small white flowersA big patch of ‘Vestal’ in full bloom

small nodding yellow flowersErythronium (trout lily, Zones 5–8) is a widespread genus, with species native to most of the northern hemisphere, but surely the prettiest species are the ones native to western North America, with large, showy, nodding, lilylike flowers.

bright yellow and white flowerI’m not sure which species of Erythronium this is—perhaps one of the hybrids.

mass planting of small nodding purple flowersI think this is Erythronium revolutum.

spires of yellow flowers growing above white flowersThe delicate yellow blooms of Epimedium × perralchicum (Zones 5–9) rise above a carpet of wood anemone.


Have a garden you’d like to share?

Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!

To submit, send 5-10 photos to [email protected] along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.

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