Before we begin our monthly Bloom Day post, I would like to invite anyone who hasn't done so already to please make whatever donation you can to the beleaguered people of Haiti. This deforested country is home to the poorest people in the Western Hemisphere and was just now beginning to recover from multiple hurricanes in 2008. Now the people who had close to nothing have even less and the best way you can help is with financial aid. On my sidebar you will see a link to the International Committee of the Red Cross which is who I chose to donate to, but if you prefer a different organization, this link will give you 20 other choices.
Now on with the blooms. Most of what I have blooming in my own garden has either been frozen or was seen last month, or both. So I thought we would take this opportunity to visit some of Norfolk's unique walled gardens. They offer a more protected environment and offer a rare collection of plants.
At the first garden, I was amazed by this Sunflower (Helianthus annus). Though this plant is known for its great size, this particular specimen was overwhelming.
Another substantial bloom was coming from these Crocus giganteum. Isn't it a shame that this lovely scene is ruined by some thoughtless person and their litter.
In the next garden someone was growing some unidentified Cucurbit, and whatever it turns out to be, the gardener should be prepared to offer the fruit some sort of support.
Of course even with all of the walls, some little varmint may manage to get in and chew up someone's efforts.
The next walled garden had a chain-link fence on one side in hopes of keeping the little critters at bay.
I have always said that Magnolia grandiflora was one of my favorite trees - but in other people's yards where the fragrance can be enjoyed from afar, but the mess stays put.
The gardener here swore that his Magnolia produced little mess at all.
Do you see anything unusual about this portrait of the gardener and his family? I'll give you a hint - you may need your glasses.
In the next garden, measures were taken beyond a mere chain link fence, this gardener installed a security camera to watch over his tasty Grapes (Vitis vinifera).
Of course not all gardens are for fruits or flowers. This walled garden had a nice water feature that included exotic fish. My wife tells me that one of our good friends' son was the original gardener here.
Since walled gardens offer a little more protection from the elements, many gardeners push the zone limits to extremes, as is the case with this Coconut Palm (Cocos nucifera).
Also thriving in a special micro-climate was an Orchid (Phalaenopsis amboinensis) that took on tree-like proportions.
Here in the States we refer to gardeners as having green thumbs, and in England they are allowed even more digits, posessing green fingers. These days it seems as if everyone is jumping on the "go green" wagon. The walled gardener below (who wishes to only be known as Frank) was so horticulturally accomplished that his entire body was turning green.
If any part of your body is green and you would like to share it..... no, on second thought let's not. However, if you have any blooms that you would like to share, be they walled or otherwise, please join other gardeners for Garden Bloggers Bloom Day hosted exceptionally as usual by Carol of May Dream Gardens.
(BTW, Please stop back by early next week as I will be celebrating my second blogging anniversary by throwing a party - with door prizes.)