69 In Flowers/ Gardening

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

The spring gardening season is always full of anticipation and excitement here in New England.  Although the average last frost date for USDA zone 6a has passed, it's still dropping into the low 40's at night.  My garden beds are not filled to the brim with beautiful flowers yet, and the wait for blooms can seem like an eternity.  The first flowers to bloom in my garden are usually crocus, hyacinth and daffodils.  Once those flowers have finished blooming, it seems easy to enter into garden limbo.  Everything is growing, but it's hard to find flowers that flourish and fill in this empty gap. 

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.comI have some personal favorites that help bridge this gap with color and growth during this time.  These flowers need to be able to withstand some of the harsh elements.  They need to hold up through heavy spring rainstorms, cool nighttime temperatures and an array of animals foraging for food that may include your foliage.  I have put together a list of my top five favorite varieties of perennials and shrubs that will thrive in your springtime garden.  It's Tuesdays in the Garden, so don't forget to scroll down after reading, and check out some other great spring flower guides!

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

Marie-Frances lilac


Lilacs look as if they came right out of a fairytale.  They are popular spring blooming shrubs known for their intoxicating fragrance and gorgeous showy flowers.  Once you discover the beauty of these bushes, you will want to display them all over the yard for neighbors and guests to see.  They are very hardy plants, and will come back year after year if cared for properly.  These deciduous shrubs and multi stemmed small trees are most commonly purple.  Lilacs also come in different colors like pink, white and yellow.  My favorite has to be Marie Francis lilac bushes.  These plants produce a more unusually seen pastel pink blossom.  Here is a little bit more about Marie Frances French lilacs.

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.comZone: 3 to 7
Light Requirement: Full Sun
Planting Time: Spring
Bloom Time: Late Spring
Average Height: 5 feet tall
Fun Facts: Attracts pollinators, cold hardy, makes great cut flowers


My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

Blue Moon Phlox


Phlox are a perfect addition to any rock garden.  They come in a variety of colors and bloom times.  Blue Moon woodland phlox, otherwise known as Sweet Willam, boasts rich blue violet blossoms.  This flower get's it's nickname because of  it's sweet scent. Definitely a favorite perennial of mine in my shade garden.  Known to be a carefree plant, it can tolerate most growing conditions.  This variety will put on a beautiful show by late April.  If you are looking to provide pollinators with an early source of nectar, this is an excellent choice!  It is especially attractive to the Tiger swallowtail butterfly. Another favorite of mine is Emerald Pink creeping phlox. This makes a wonderful ground cover. 

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

Emerald Pink creeping phlox

Zone: 3 to 8
Light Requirement: Shade
Planting Time: Spring
Bloom Time: Early Spring
Average Height: 12 inches tall
Fun Facts: Attracts pollinators, low maintenance , shade tolerant  


My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

Festiva Maxima peony


The peony brings any garden a rustic, old world look.  They are known to live long lives and bloom for many years.  Festiva Maxima Peonies have very large, white, fragrant blooms with a hint of glowy pink. These pretty flowers have specks of raspberry which make it particularly unique.  I always look forward to them beginning to blossom in late May.  Another favorite of mine would be the soft pink Sarah Bernhardt peony.  This classic flower has very large, double blossoms with a naturally feminine charm.  Both of these varieties make a perfect addition to any cottage style garden.  The one important lesson I've learned when it comes to peonies, is to always make sure to stake them early.  Their heavy blooms can droop low to the ground bending and damaging the stems during a rainstorm.  Make sure to take care of this early in the season so you don't miss out on these prized perennials. 

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

Sarah Bernhardt peony

Zone: 3 to 8
Light Requirement: Full Sun
Planting Time: Spring
Bloom Time: Late Spring
Average Height: 36 inches tall
Fun Facts: Deer & rabbit resistant, fragrant , great cut flowers


My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com


Tulips are an obvious and standard spring flower.  They are a perennial bulb that comes in almost any color.  This lovely flower also varies in many different shapes and sizes.  Impressively, some varieties can last well into the middle of spring in my garden.  The Red Emperor tulip is definitely worth mentioning.  Some start to bloom in early April, then more show up, ready to bloom right before May begins.  It's amazing how these tulips just keep popping up here and there.  They are so easy to grow, and look especially divine in containers.  They boast extravagantly elegant red petals with their signature yellow striped interior.  Even as the flowers start to fade, the black centers help them continue to stun.  Have a bag of tulips you forgot to plant in your garden?  No problem!  Force them indoors and enjoy tulips all year round! 

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.comZone: 3 to 8
Light Requirement: Full Sun
Planting Time: Fall
Bloom Time: Early Spring
Average Height: 16 inches tall
Fun Facts: Winter hardy, can be grown in containers,
great cut flower
Tip: Plant in part shade to enjoy a longer blooming time


My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

Renaissance spirea


Spirea is a deciduous or semi-evergreen shrub known for it's gorgeous clusters of flowers.  Though these flowers may be tiny, they are profuse and sensational when they bloom in groups.  They range from bright pinks and purples, all the way to softer yellows and whites.  They look great as a border plant or in a wildlife garden, and also make a lovely addition to an all white moon garden.  My favorite variety is the Renaissance Spirea known for it's showy white blooms.  I am also growing the Double Play Artisan Spirea from Proven Winners in my yard.  It has fuchsia flowers, is very compact and very low maintenance.  In early spring, this variety has rich purple-red new growth that is equally as appealing as it's flowers.  I am such a fan of this shrub that I'm thinking of adding Double Play Painted Lady to my landscape this upcoming season!

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.comZone: 3 to 7
Light Requirement: Full Sun
Planting Time: Spring
Bloom Time: Mid-Spring
Average Height: 5 feet tall
Fun Facts: Attracts pollinators, fast growth rate, beautiful orange-red fall color
Tip: Make sure to water regularly and more often in extreme heat


My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

Tuesdays In The Garden

Now it's time to take a tour of some other fabulous gardens.  Stop by a splendid Pacific NW garden to see what's blooming, then learn about some easy care plants.  Take note of some favorite early spring perennials, and after that discover some flowering bushes you will just adore.  We all come together on Tuesdays to make you your very own gardening cheat sheets with a theme in mind!  Don't forget to pin anything that catches your attention for later, and give it a try yourself! 

My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com
My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com
My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com
My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com

I am patiently awaiting the arrival of my first peony bloom of the season.  The foliage is looking strong and filling my garden with some colorful greenery.  My Blue Moon Phlox started blooming about a week ago.  So happy to see some flowers thriving in the shade garden.  I have a group of Red Emperor tulips still lingering around my rock border, and the lilacs look as if they will burst open with blooms at any moment.  Crossing my fingers that my Renaissance spirea will closely follow behind.  Do you have a few varieties of spring blooms that you just couldn't live without?  Please add suggestions in the comment section below.  I'm always looking to expand my flower beds with some new favorites.  Anything blooming in your garden right now?  Send me a bit of cheer and tweet me your pictures @thefreckledrose.  Hope everyone is enjoying spring!  See you back here soon for another round of Tuesdays In The Garden.

In Case You Missed It- Mother's Day Gardening Gifts



My Top 5 Spring Garden Blooms | angiethefreckledrose.com


Featured at the Homestead Bloggers Network

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  • Reply
    Vickie @ Vickie's Kitchen and Garden
    May 3, 2016 at 9:45 am

    Our tulips and bleeding hearts are blooming here in Michigan. My spring vegetable garden is underway.

    I love phlox -I will have to try and grow some next year.

    Have a great day!

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    We had quite a few flowers in bloom already here. It’s been unusually warm and everything seems to have come into bloom early. I even have a flower on one of the hostas which usually doesn’t happen until late August. I hope your flowers come into bloom soon.

  • Reply
    Ellen Chauvin
    May 3, 2016 at 12:12 pm

    Angie, what beautiful pictures! And I love your boots, too! Visiting you today from Intentional Tuesday!

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 12:57 pm

    They are all lovely photos, but the one that really got me was the lilac. I love lilacs, but I’ve never seen one this color – absolutely beautiful!

  • Reply
    Anne @ The Fitly Spoken Word
    May 3, 2016 at 1:45 pm

    I LOVE lilac! All the spring flowers are beautiful, but I particularly love lilac.

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 1:45 pm

    So wish I could grow lilacs, but they don’t like me. ๐Ÿ™ However, tulips and spirea are my friends! Great list, Angie – I’m waiting impatiently for my peonys to bloom!

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 1:51 pm

    All of the blooms you featured are so lovely. They are not grown here though, just too hot.
    Our daylillies should be blooming by next week and our amaryllis are in mid-bloom.

    Thank you for visiting The Maple Hill Hop this week!

  • Reply
    Amy Scott
    May 3, 2016 at 5:49 pm

    No daffodils in May, my goodness! It seems the east coast skipped Spring altogether! I currently have thriving tulips at home in Ireland but I don’t now how they are withstanding the winds we’ve been having. This is really helpful to me because I always struggle (at least when I’m in Georgia!) with what plants handle sun the best.

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 5:50 pm

    What a fantastic list. I adore lilacs, I have some very old bushes growing in my yard that have been here for a few decades now. I love them. I have one right outside my bedroom so when my window is open I can smell it. It is fabulous!

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 5:51 pm

    I absolutely love lilacs and peonies. Lilacs for the scent and peonies for the beauty. I have 3 peony bushes and would love to get more because there are so many varieties.

  • Reply
    Christine | Vermilion Roots
    May 3, 2016 at 6:08 pm

    They are such pretty blooms. This would be my dream garden. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 6:13 pm

    Love and have all but one of these flowers in my garden. Great tips.

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 6:30 pm

    Gorgeous choices. Thanks for the great info

  • Reply
    image-in-ing: weekly photo linky
    May 3, 2016 at 6:39 pm

    What a stunning lilac – I’ve never seen anything like it!
    Thanks for linking up at http://image-in-ing.blogspot.com/2016/05/snorkeling-on-saint-thomas.html

  • Reply
    Lisa Isabella Russo
    May 3, 2016 at 7:01 pm

    What lovely flowers! I hadn’t seen some of them before, thank you.

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 9:11 pm

    Beautiful pictures! My favorites are lilacs, tulips, and peonies. I LOVE SPRING! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    May 3, 2016 at 9:56 pm

    I must agree with your choices!

  • Reply
    Kerisha Deans
    May 3, 2016 at 10:12 pm

    I miss having a garden! This was a very informative post, I’m sending it to mother.

  • Reply
    Shanna Rogers
    May 3, 2016 at 11:13 pm

    Tulips are my favorite! I planted some in my garden but didn’t care for them and they died. ๐Ÿ™

  • Reply
    May 4, 2016 at 12:17 am

    I wish I had a green thumb.

  • Reply
    May 4, 2016 at 1:07 am

    Wow I love that Marie Francis Lilac! I’m going to find one for our yard! So gorgeous!! Spring flowers boost me up after a long winter of grey and gloomy. Can’t wait to see those first spring bulbs, lilacs and peonies!

  • Reply
    May 4, 2016 at 2:01 am

    Beautiful photos- love the lilac!

    We are Dannah | Australian lifestyle blog

  • Reply
    May 4, 2016 at 10:05 am

    Aww, I love this post… As the weather is getting warmer here in UK I love reading posts like this. Really inspiring and it put me in a sunny mood.

  • Reply
    Stephanie Lee
    May 4, 2016 at 10:15 am

    These are so beautiful! I just love photographing flowers.

  • Reply
    May 4, 2016 at 11:35 am

    I’m so jealous of your garden–I can’t wait until we can move and have substantial space for me to have a flower garden <3

  • Reply
    Tess Ciarloni
    May 4, 2016 at 2:57 pm

    All such beautiful flowers! My parents have a huge lilac tree on the side of their house and when I was young I used to be able to smell the tree from my bedroom in the spring. So nice!

  • Reply
    Sophie Beland
    May 4, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    This post is so inspirational! I live in central London so sadly don’t get out in the countryside that much. This post makes me want to go to a flower garden now though!

  • Reply
    May 4, 2016 at 7:15 pm

    I have such a black thumb so your tips and info were helpful!!

  • Reply
    Ahu @ Ahu Eats
    May 4, 2016 at 7:20 pm

    So lovely! It’s so nice to see all these fresh blooms as somebody who lives in a concrete jungle!

  • Reply
    May 4, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    Lovely!! Peonies are one of my favorites too but I haven’t seen any around! I hope to find some in my travels soon so I can admire their beauty. My favorites are the wildflowers you don’t plant! The ones I’ve seen around here lately are daisies, poppies, and Mexican evening primrose. LOVE this time of year for the flowers!!

  • Reply
    Christine - Jar Of Lemons
    May 4, 2016 at 10:32 pm

    These are so beautiful! My husband and I are about to plant a bunch of flowers including Peonies, so I’ll have to come back to this post right before we do!

  • Reply
    Laura Kathleen
    May 5, 2016 at 8:26 am

    Lovely photos! Peonies are my favorites for spring! Love having everything come to life again!

    Laura | Laura Aime Vous

  • Reply
    Ducks n a Row
    May 5, 2016 at 9:25 am

    Angie, I love lilacs so much that I have a post set for tomorrow all about them AND the Lilac Festival, too. They are simply gorgeous. Stumbled and PINNED too!
    Sinea โ™ฅ

  • Reply
    May 5, 2016 at 10:32 am

    This is very helpful and informative. I want to start gardening but I don’t really know how. I love tulips and I’d love to have many of those ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply
    May 5, 2016 at 10:33 am

    I just bought my first home and was THRILLED to discover a gorgeous flowering bush in my yard, and then even more thrilled when my instagram followers told me they were lilacs! They’ve already died :(. But they were beautiful while they lasted!

  • Reply
    Kim Cunningham
    May 5, 2016 at 10:59 am

    Lovely collection. I love the look of the pink lilacs. Would love to plant them, but not sure where. Had phlox for several years, but they did not return last year.

  • Reply
    Lisa Sharp
    May 5, 2016 at 11:00 am

    Just moved and there are tons of flower beds here. It’s been fun to watch what will pop up. I have a few peonies, there were three already here and our real estate agent gave us one as a housewarming gift.

    I haven’t heard of phlox, now I want some!

  • Reply
    May 5, 2016 at 12:30 pm

    I love Peonies! They are my absolute favorite flower! So pretty! I love all of these! I just wish they would grow here!

  • Reply
    May 5, 2016 at 2:43 pm

    So much beauty! Tulips let me know spring has finally arrived. Lilacs smell amazing. And peonies are just gorgeous – they’re my favourite flower, and I have a huge peonies thigh tattoo. After moving I only do vegetable gardening now, but it’s been wonderful getting the early seeds sown these last couple weeks.

  • Reply
    Michelle Ramblingwoods
    May 5, 2016 at 9:02 pm

    My phlox and tulips and day lily are eaten by the deer so I have to find something else..Michelle

  • Reply
    Jennifer L. } Modern Chic
    May 5, 2016 at 9:48 pm

    I love flowers in spring in general but those lilacs and peonys just scream spring. That and sunflowers are just happy flowers.

  • Reply
    Justine Y @ Little Dove
    May 6, 2016 at 11:21 am

    Gorgeous blooms! I love lilacs and peonies, so pretty. We just planted tons of fruits and veggies and I have yet to plant flowers; but I have to plant them in our fenced-in garden area because of our DEER. Oh my gosh, we have so many deer and they will eat anything (even deer-resistant and things you would never think they’d eat!!) so any pretty plants have to be walled off. It’s kind of a bummer but what are you gonna do? I think I’ll plant some peonies and hydrangea (some of my favs!) in our garden/orchard and just enjoy them from the other side of the fence. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Reply
    Michelle Marine
    May 6, 2016 at 4:39 pm

    Your photos are gorgeous, Angie! I love spirea and lilacs. Can’t wait to do some landscaping when our house is finally finished!!

  • Reply
    LuAnn Braley
    May 6, 2016 at 4:59 pm

    Hi Angie, I’m visiting from Friendship Friday at Create With Joy.

    I love those photos. I can almost smell the flowers! Do you have any thoughts for someone who would like to have more flowers in the yard…maybe some that don’t taste good to dogs?

  • Reply
    Splendid Little Stars
    May 6, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Oh the joy of Spring blooms!
    Boomerang lilac is blooming in my garden now. And yes, it will bloom again later. It smells heavenly, too!
    I have lots of daffodils and very few tulips because the deer like those so much. I have some wild tulips that I bought that the deer don’t touch–at least not so far. They come back every year.

    lovely photos of beautiful flowers!

  • Reply
    Lisa @ LTTL
    May 7, 2016 at 2:57 pm

    Another fabulous post Angie… I am pinning this one as I am hopeful to be in my forever home by the fall and want to start my gardens. ๐Ÿ˜€

    Lisa @ Life Thru the Lens

  • Reply
    Carly Syren
    May 9, 2016 at 3:44 pm

    Beautiful post! Although I’m all the way down here in Zone 10, this was very informative and I love your photos! Do you take these all yourself?

  • Reply
    Villroses hage
    May 9, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    No spring without Lilacs! And the smell… mmmm.

    It is garden art to be able to show interesting plants all the time! Challenging!

  • Reply
    Kristy Life-n-reflection
    May 9, 2016 at 9:33 pm

    gorgeous walk through the Spring garden

  • Reply
    May 9, 2016 at 9:55 pm

    You are giving me so much yard inspiration!! I’m dreaming of peonies, to bad I’m late for them this year!!

  • Reply
    Brittany Marie
    May 9, 2016 at 10:12 pm

    Absolutely gorgeous! I love for a yard that i can landscape with lovely flowers and bushes and trees. Thank you for sharing and reigniting my dream ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Reply
    May 9, 2016 at 10:16 pm

    Such beautiful blooms!! I wish I had a green thumb, I’m currently in the process of killing my mint plant-something I was told was close to impossible. Haha!

  • Reply
    May 10, 2016 at 8:14 am

    A wonderful selection of flowers. Thank you for linking in with “Through My Lens”.

  • Reply
    Tara @ Lehman Lane
    May 10, 2016 at 9:33 am

    Love your pics Angie! They are some of my favorites too :). You are my feature tonight @ Dream. Create. Inspire. Link. Take care, tara

  • Reply
    May 10, 2016 at 12:42 pm

    I used to have a garden at my mom’s house. Since I moved out (years ago) I’ve lived in apartments. I really miss gardening! Well, I have houseplants and potted plants on my balcony but it’s not the same. Soon though!

  • Reply
    May 10, 2016 at 1:13 pm

    Lilacs and peonies are my favorite!

  • Reply
    May 10, 2016 at 3:24 pm

    Awesome! And as I went through the comments section, I can see how a lot of people have said what I wanted to.
    Great that your shared top 5 picks! When choosing plants for spring, considering that they are strong enough to fight the weather is crucial. People often forget that and then come the signs of a disaster. haha

  • Reply
    Megan - Creative Vegetable Gardener
    May 10, 2016 at 6:19 pm

    I was just looking at my garden yesterday and thinking, “I need a few more blooming flowers for this time of year.” I have lots of bulbs, but I want to add some phlox or Candytuft or something?! These are great suggestions that have gotten me thinking. I’m a fellow member of the Garden Foxes and I just scheduled your post to go out to my list this week.

  • Reply
    Meg | Hello Farmhouse
    May 11, 2016 at 12:39 am

    Wow, that is the prettiest lilac I’ve ever seen! I had no idea they came in pink. We planted our very first lilac this year, and I’m so excited! Peonies are my very favorite and ours just bloomed!

  • Reply
    Jeanne Grunert
    May 11, 2016 at 10:54 am

    Great choices for your spring blooms feature! I love these flowers too and grow many of them here at Seven Oaks Farm. Thank you for sharing your post. #HomeMattersParty

  • Reply
    May 11, 2016 at 11:30 am

    Angie, I LOVE TUESDAYS IN THE GARDEN! On my blog, Tuesday’s are Tasty as I share a recipe!!!

    We’ve had our first Peony bloom here in Northwestern North Carolina Mountains. Our daffodils and tulips are long gone. Lilacs are waning. Our organic raised bed garden is sporting tall elephant garlic greenery and the spinach is bolting (planted last fall and perked up about 5 weeks ago.)

    Great post and I’m so glad we were neighbors at Crystal’s today (#79).

  • Reply
    BROOKE Neal
    May 11, 2016 at 1:25 pm

    absolutely beautiful and cute boots too!

  • Reply
    May 11, 2016 at 2:07 pm

    I love peonies! Great post!

  • Reply
    Kim @ Three Olives Branch
    May 11, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    I love the peony! Unfortunately we get a lot of spring snow here, so spring flowers do not always last very long.

  • Reply
    May 11, 2016 at 2:43 pm

    Beautiful pictures! I love flower gardens!

  • Reply
    May 11, 2016 at 6:37 pm

    My tulips have bloomed and gone already here in Indiana. It’s sad. I love peonies and phlox. I didn’t know those shrubs were called spirea, but I’ve always enjoyed them! All of these are so beautiful, thank you so much for sharing with us at The Homestead Blog Hop. Hope we see you again this week!!

  • Reply
    Will G
    May 11, 2016 at 11:07 pm

    My wife loves tulips <3 she had them in her bouquet at our wedding. it was awesome

  • Reply
    May 12, 2016 at 8:32 am

    I am in love with our Lilacs this year – they are just so rich and beautiful. Thanks for sharing yours!

  • Reply
    Lisa @ Fun Money Mom
    May 14, 2016 at 12:28 am

    These are all so beautiful…you must have a gorgeous garden! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Share The Wealth Sunday! xoxo

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