This year I'd like to share some pictures of my garden plants with everyone. I'll start with an introduction: I have a small urban garden on a little lot about 15 minutes out of downtown, in which I can fit only a limited number of plants. But I have managed to cram in about 200 varieties of perennials and maybe 15 or 20 trees and shrubs. I've lived on this property for most of my life, and the garden was originally taken care of by my grandma. When she moved out it kind of went to Hell for a couple years because my mom is too busy with work to take care of a garden. About 10 years ago I slowly started working on the yard so that I could have places to plant my Cyps, and before long I started collecting other perennials and expanding the garden. To this day the garden remains simply a series of plots where I plant the plants I have collected... I've tried to landscape tastefully but I'm just not very good at it. As a result I won't be posting pictures of the gardens, but of the individual plants within them. I know many of you live in warm areas and grow all sorts of neat stuff, so you may not be impressed at all by my plants, but many of my plants are uncommon in my region so I treasure them. At any rate, I hope you enjoy my amateur photography! Today I'll start with the first plant to bloom in my garden this year, which also happens to be one of my favorites. It's Aquilegia jonesii, commonly called Jones' columbine. I LOVE columbines and whenever I see a neat species I pick it up. This plant is particularly rare in my area. It is an alpine species that just forms a little cushion of blue leaves, which is topped with violet flowers in the spring. It's no more than 2" tall and maybe 4" wide. This plant has been planted here for 4 years now. It didn't bloom in 2008 or 2009, so this single flower is the first I've seen on it since the first time it bloomed in 2007. On that occasion it probably produced about 10 blooms. Not really sure why it's having troubles blooming now; hopefully this is the start of a trend of improvement. Here are a couple photos: There will be more in bloom in the next few days - Tulipa tarda, Tulipa pulchella and Lewisia tweedyi are in bud.