Non Edible but great color and texture



tulip next to an emerging Diphylleia cymosas
more about diphylleia cymosas below


I grow 2 species of peony. One is the herbaceous and one is the tree peony.

The tree peony has a woody stem that remains above ground all year.

The herbaceous peony dies back and consequently has to start from scratch each year.

Below is the herbaceous peony emerging.

1.5+ month to go between now and blooms

April 22. Herbaceous peony broke through the soil

mid june

tree peony

tree peony

Diphylleia cymosas are also called the umbrella plant because of it's distinct umbrella-like leaves.
It breaks the ground early spring with these rumpled leaves but quickly grows to 3-4'.
The plant is shade loving and adds great texture and height in the garden.
The small white flowers turn into umbels of blue-black berries on brilliant red stalks.



I grow Helleborus for 2 reasons.

1. it is the earliest bloomer in the garden

2. I am smitten with the flowers.

My garden is mostly about culinary plants and culinary oddities.

Because the whole Helleborus plant (flowers, roots, leaves,) is poisonous, and because poisoning my public is a self defeating culinary goal, I limit myself to a couple plants to ohh and ah over before the usable edibles emerge.

For the ghoulishly curious, the symptoms of ingesting large amounts of the plant are:

“Burning of mouth and throat, vomiting, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, nervous symptoms, depression,skin irritation after contact.”

And such a pretty flower.

April 16, 2009