Spring is in the process of sprung-ing here in Richmond and we’re boiling over with excitement. Warm weather? Yes please. Green trees? Bring it. Flowers blooming? Duh, winning.
So to those of you who aren’t on the brink of spring yet, we thought we’d send a virtual dose of the season – courtesy of some photos of what’s starting to happen around here – like the little buds that are showing up on the hydrangeas that we’ve inherited.
Spring is especially exciting this year because we get to be surprised by whatever magically decides to pop up around the new house – and we finally get to see what our property looks like in all it’s bloomin’ glory. The daffodils are already on blast. Holla.
Oh and for those who don’t recognize the house above, it’s the back of ours. It’s definitely different than the original brick ranch facade in the front, right? We think it’s really funny that the addition was only built about 10 years later (in the 70’s instead of the 60’s) but it has such a different vibe. Someday we hope to unify things. Not sure how yet, but maybe it’ll come to me in a dream. Sidenote #1: I once had a dream about tiling our old shower surround with white subway tile about a year before actually deciding to embark on that adventure (and to use white subway tile).
But back to the weather. Even Burger is itching to get outside and kick off what will be many months of bug hunting in a new backyard. Here he is gazing longingly out the living room window. Sidenote #2: This shot of the bushes makes Sherry twitchy because she wants to trim them like crazy.
As for the temp, the daily highs around here have been wavering between the mid-50s and the high-60s, even stretching into the 70’s a couple of weeks back. And that means yard work is quickly creeping to the top of our to-do list (especially since we got started a few weeks back). Which reminds us, we owe you a more official “tour” of the exterior of our house. So put that in your “stay tuned” folder.
The only bummer that spring has sprung on us has to do with the tree in the front of the house. It has grown (or was planted?) crazy close to the foundation…
… and stretches up the side of the porch, sort of feathering out over the walkway to the front door. We’ve always known it probably has to go (aka we should take it out before it takes out any of the house). But it’s charming, darn it.
Especially covered in white blooms. See them below? Sidenote #3: I just typed “see them blow?” which was oddly entertaining to me (I dunno, kinda like “thar she blows”), so I stopped writing this post and told Sherry about it. She only found it marginally funny. Maybe it was a you-had-to-be-there thing.
Anyway, don’t those white flowers in the picture above (not blow) make you love it? Maybe white flowers are the tree equivalent to sad puppy dog eyes. Seems like a shame to remove that sweet little tree now. Especially since we don’t think we can save him since he’s basically on top of the house (so we anticipate a crazy root situation when we start digging). Oh and while we’re on the subject of said tree, does anyone know what it is? We have no idea.
Despite our little tree drama, we’re ready to enjoy spring to the fullest (holy buckets, it’ll be Clara’s first birthday before we know it). I wonder how good she’d be at mulching. Hmm…
Is anyone else getting a good dose of spring fever yet? Are temperatures up and flowers out in you area? Who’s shoveling snow today?
I love this post! That’s one of the things i love about your blog. You are one of the few who also concentrate on your home’s exterior! I love Spring…still waiting for it here in Toronto :)
We’ve had a few doses of 60 degrees here in Boston, but no flowers yet! At least almost all the snow is gone!
I’m a little further north in southern NH and those 60 degree days have been such teases! I’m so tired of the mucky snow and am eagerly awaiting SPRING. :)
Rebecca @ the lil house that could says
My grass is green, my grass is green! No bloomage yet though :( I need to spend some time outside trimming some of last year’s plants so they come back nice and pretty. The grassy things in my front yard are out of control!! They look like they need a good hair brushing…
And ugh mulching season… I feel like I just did that!
Rachael @ Mrs. Adventure says
Spring is in the Air here as well the Magnolia Tulip trees are in full bloom here in Texas :+)
[email protected]'er All About It says
I’m no arbor expert (arborologist???), but that tree looks like a magnolia to me….but don’t quote me on that….in all my arborville glory…
brandt @ New House on the Blog says
I’m getting a good ol’ dose of Charlie Sheen from you, John! Next thing we know, you’ll be telling us you have Tigers Blood in your DNA!
We just got nailed with another snowstorm here in the Motor City. Hopefully…HOPEFULLY we’ll get the same temps as you guys soon, because this dreary winter is getting pretty gosh-darned old!
Oddly enough, I can’t wait to get my fingers grubby while working on the land. Nothing says summer like freshly cut grass to me!
Sarah Ray says
at this point i think spring is just a myth. it’s never going to get here. ever. but it’s encouraging to see that it’s arrived in your neck of the woods, so maybe we have a fighting chance up here in michigan. thanks for sharing.
and feel free to check out my blog:
It was 85 degrees here yesterday! I told my husband this morning, “Next week, it’s work-outside-week!” He’s not as excited as I am… This year’s goal: a garden!
You guys are much farther ahead than we are up in NOVA! The daffodils are still trying to peek out in our yard, no blooms yet – but I can’t wait! I love spring! :)
I knew John would bust out with some Sheen sooner or later.
But, as for that tree, I think it might be a species of DOGWOOD. (*cough your state flower Mr. UVA cough*) Just teasing! But, that’s my guess and I’m sticking to it.
Winning! (caught that too!!)
I think it’s a camelia. They come in ALL different fun colors! :)
Landscape Architect from Indiana here.. yes you are correct Kelli, it is a Camellia! Its a southern tree– it wont grow here in Indiapolis, but you are lucky to have them there in Richmond!
[email protected]'er All About It says
See….and I was totally wrong above!! Don’t quote my ar-bor-o-log-y :-)
Hahaha. We’re just as clueless! Not to worry, you’re in good company! Haha.
Yes, Camelia for sure. You could try to cut it back hard and then dig it up and transplant it. It should work if it you keep it watered over the summer. No blooms for next spring though, but possible. The following year it could bloom.
Alicia C. says
I’m a Landscape Architect from Charlotte and I agree. It is definitely a camellia. I would guess from looking and the time of bloom that it is a camellia japonica. They can get huge so if you are going to move/remove it, it would be best to do it sooner rather than later
These are beautiful trees! I remember drawing a checkerboard and playing checkers using the whole red and white flowers that would fall on the ground when I was a kid. My grandmother even has tree now that she rooted from a stem I had picked for her when I was about 5. Maybe you could do the same and ‘save’ it?
They come in all kinds of pretty reds, pinks, and whites. Btw, Christmas Camellias are the prettiest. :)
London has a had a cold but sunny spell recently, but it’ll be a long slog till real spring. There’s hints of blossoms around the place though.
And! It’s my birthday on Monday and I decided back in October that that’s when I’d unpack all my summer dresses as a spring treat. I can’t wait.
candace @ thecandace.com says
We just got hit with another snowstorm in MN. Oh how I long for the lilies and tulips to creep up from the ground! It won’t be for a few more months around here but I’ll enjoy yours until then!
The snow had melted over here in Illinois but there are still no blooms in sight! By the way, I am loving the white blooms….They are so pretty…you guys are so lucky to inherit such beautiful trees, all we inherited from the previous owners were mostly unattractive plants or weeds…Yikes!
Jessie from http://www.mixandchic.com
Oh, I really hope you are able to save it. Please try at least?
Of course we’ll try! We love that thing! Haha.
This week we had lots of rain and got rid of nearly all of our snow. Today we’re being walloped by yet another blizzard in Southwestern Ontario. Sigh. This winter will never end!
It’s a camellia.
Melissa S. says
Not a magnolia but could be a camellia? If it is a camellia, you can put cuttings in water, and they will grow little roots, at which point you can plant the cuttings outside. Granted, it will probably be 10 years before they grow to be the size of what you have (based purely on the experience I’ve had planting a camellia cutting.) It did take root outside, but it’s still small a couple years later.
It must be so fun waiting to see what pops up in your new yard. I can’t wait till we can someday afford a house instead of a condo. Darn DC area prices and the real estate crash.
Haha, love the Charlie Sheen. The dear boy can’t help but pop up in my conversations lately.
Spring makes me want to paint my whole house fresh colors, I’ll probably end up with something yellow by the end of the week!
I think it’s a camellia. Might not be, but it looks like the shrubs that we inherited around our house. They bloom in the *winter* (through Feb, usually) – even more reason not to want to move it even though you probably should.
Waaahhh…it’s snowing here!!! That tree looks like a Camellia to me.
Seems like we’ve had similar weather lately. Just south of Nashville here. Spring is in the air, so refreshing! So exciting for you to have a new yard to discover. I remember buying our first home in a Michigan winter and the excitement spring brought. Just seconds from pulling up a huge bed of “weeds” (to my untrained eye) my Mom stopped me. I almost destroyed a beautiful, fragrant bed of Lilly of the Valley. Which turned out to be one of my favorite spots in the landscaping. Have fun discovering your hidden treasures.
You guys stink. hmph.
Central New York is fun and all… but 30″+ of snow in Monday’s snowstorm does NOT give us up to the SEVENTIES!?!?!?! in temperature. We’ll start seeing green in another month, unless we get another snow storm.
Thanks for the reminder that spring will come SOMEDAY! Up here in Cleveland we’re getting a foot of lake-effect snow today. I did see a forsythia bush about to bloom yesterday though… there is hope.
That is definitely a magnolia tree. It is lovely. I say you relocate it if you can. You can always get some rooting hormone to sprinkle on the roots when you replant it to have a better chance of it taking root again.
liz @ bontempsbeignet says
W have giant shrubs growing on the side of our house. I mean HUGE. Like 20 feet tall (we live on a sloping hill) and we hacked a bunch of them back to find irises! Yay, they’re just about to bloom. I can’t wait! Winning! DUH! :)
It’s a camellia. The scientific name is Camellia japonica. Look it up – it’s a very southern “queen” in the garden.
Caitlin @ Desert Domicile says
I can’t wait to see what’s blooming all around your house! Looking forward to living vicariously through and seeing how you decorate your yard since my “yard” consists of a 6′ x 8′ concrete patio and lots of gravel haha
That looks like a white camellia – less tree, more flowering evergreen. Maybe it would be worth trying to transplant it and/or prune it, instead of take it out. I love camellias – they always seem to be one of the first flowers blooming in the South.
It’s a Camellia :)
Kelly H says
I’m thinking Camelia or Camellia, however you spell it. Maybe, I could be totally wrong!
Oooooh, I can’t wait to see more springy pictures! It’s 30 degrees and snowy here!
I know exactly what you mean about the tree being too close to the house! I really liked the mulberry tree that was placed about 4 inches from the side of my house……but I knew that it had the potential to mess with the foundation. It was also reaching across my yard to touch my neighbors’ house! That came down in early November, but I haven’t been able to get the stump removed just yet.
This may seem silly but any recommendations on HOW to mow a lawn? This is my first year as a homeowner but also my first time EVER in my life (I’m 27) mowing a lawn. I’ve found the right mower, but I feel like it’s so much more complicated than simply walking behind the big machine….
Since I’m the lawn mower of our family, I figured I’d field this. I go around the perimeter of the yard in a circle first, then go back and forth creating parallel rows (the perimeter circle gives you room to turn around on the edges). Mowing in the evening is said it be best (when the sun is low and the grass is dry) and being sure not to cut off more than 1/3rd of the blade height at a time (any more stresses it) is also a good thing to remember. Good luck!
Definitely had to dig my car out from under snow today, and I’m only in SE Michigan. Cannot wait to have spring here!!!
We just had a foot of snow.
I am pretty sure that you have a camellia. I had a pink one at my last house. The flowers are so pretty and delicate.
Erin @ Domestic Adventure says
Our snowbanks here in Maine are still so big that when I accidentally backed into one in our driveway, I dented the bumper of our SUV, which is a good couple of feet off the ground!
Your pictures give me hope, though…our yard will look like that in May!
Dana @ House*Tweaking says
Just noticed from the exterior shot of the back of your house that it looks like you might have a basement? Sorry, if you’ve already mentioned that. I may have missed it.
Yup! We don’t talk about it much cause it’s a mess but you can see it on our House Tour page. Hope it helps!
It could be a dogwood tree. Happy spring-time.
I’m so ready for spring it hurts! Today is our first pretty day in weeks and I’m stuck in my office. Thanks for all the lovely outdoor pictures!
PS – I am by no means a flower expert, but I think those are white camelias:
JEALOUS!! i wish our spring was more sprung up here in NJ.
Krysta @ Domestic for Dummies says
Love little burger in the window!! The only thing that would make that picture cuter is if Clara was sitting there with him. Except that would probably be very dangerous and irresponsible.
I wish we had a good excuse like winter to not have to do yard work down here in Florida. Instead of flowers starting to bloom, we currently have grapefruits and pineapples growing in our backyard.
I know that one of your thousands of readers will most likely be able to identify the tree, but just as an FYI, I’ve had some luck in the past with the “What plant is that?” Flickr group: http://www.flickr.com/groups/whatplantisthat/ with help for identifying plants.
Love that! Thanks for sharing!
You are lucky! We don’t even have buds here in Northern Illinois yet.. I can’t wait for it!
We had a similar tree problem when we moved into our house that we finally took care of last summer.. I’ll never understand why people thing planting trees (or letting them grow) right next to a house is a good idea!! :)
That’s not a tree, it’s a camellia!!
Jennifer B. says
That tree is definitely an overgrown camellia bush.If you want to keep it, prune it back a ton. They grow rapidly – about 30cm per year according to wikipedia. And you could even transplant it a bit farther away from the foundation if you wanted. They’re gorgeous flowers. :)
Jennifer B. says
Here’s a site on the different types of camellia blooms. I think yours looks like the semi-double.
Uh, -31 degrees celsius here in Alberta, Canada today (-23 F?). Where are you Spring?
Oh Meagan- I feel for you! I was feeling bummed about barely hitting 40 today and seeing a tiny bit of dead grass around the mounds of melting snow, but now I feel lucky!
I think your mystery tree is some sort of camellia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camellia
We have a pink one right next to our house and it always blooms this time of year. It’s a shame that you have to remove it whatever it is!
i’m going to guess crepe myrtle on the tree, but not 100% sure about that. good luck!
I think it’s a Camellia bush, not a tree and woefully overgrown!
It is possible to dig it up and transplant it, you just have to carefully dig up the root ball, which grows horizontally. Google it and see the best time to move it…I think after it finishes blooming.
I transplanted two of them last year from my side yard to the front of the house (after moving the three birds of paradise that were in the front…lol)