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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Brooklyn Winter Blooms

A modest thaw late last week gave me the opportunity to search for some early blooming plants around Brooklyn over the weekend.

I spent a couple of hours at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden where I found a couple of the expected species flowering.

Much of the snow cover has melted and I found several hellebore emerging from the now soft ground at the Rock Garden. These early blooming flowers are members of the family ranunculaceae (buttercups).

Nearby was a border of brilliant yellow blooming Witch-hazel. They are one of my favorite cold weather flowering shrubs.

The Midwood forest of Prospect Park is usually the best place to look for Snowdrops, but I found a nice section of these white flowers on the hillside above Nelly's Lawn. I was actually looking for some Siberian Squill, another early bloomer, which can usually be found in that area in late-February.

I was surprised to find these early crocuses emerging among the Snowdrops. It seems a little premature for these Spring wildflowers and I wonder if they will survive the next snowfall.

Another member of the buttercup family, these Winter Aconites are pushing up on a steep, wooded hillside in the Ravine. I've never seen them in other parts of Prospect Park.

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