Garden log, 3.11.15

Moved two blueberry bushes today. They’re loaded with buds, so I might have planned the timing of this project a bit better, but I hope this new location will be, um, fruitful.

Moved and divided Christmas ferns yesterday. Amazed at how brilliantly these plants grew with absolutely no help from me. Now they’re in a spot where they’ll get more attention. Can’t wait to see what becomes of them next.

On a walk-around late this afternoon, I spotted this:



Do you know what these wormy little things are? The unfurling leaf buds of Sanguinaria canadensis, also known as bloodroot. One of my very favorite spring epherals. It’s a bit early for them, I think, but I am glad to see them anytime.

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Sanguinaria canadensis

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Another plant I never want to be without: Sanguinaria canadensis, or bloodroot.

sanguinaria

This charming spring ephemeral is native to eastern North America. It began blooming for me late last week.

bloodroot unfurling

The flowers are small, perhaps 2 inches across. It emerges from the ground with the leaves tightly furled around the stem. It slowly naturalizes, and propagates easily from root cuttings.

Like all spring ephemerals, it shows off for a short period in the cooler weather of spring, then enters dormancy in summer. The common name “bloodroot” comes from its reddish-colored sap, which Native Americans used for dye.

I don’t do anything in particular to care for this plant. It doesn’t seem to attract any pests or diseases.  It grows well in my acid clay soil without fertilizer or any special soil amendments. I imagine it would spread more rapidly if my soil were more agreeable.

If, like me, you are inclined to periodic bouts of laziness, this plant should do just fine for you in shadier parts of the garden so long as you water it the first year after you plant it.