The first bulbs I bought for the coming season were snowdrops from Carolyn's Shade Garden. They will be delivered "in the green" in March or April, having already bloomed. The other bulbs I ordered elsewhere will get planted this spring and bloom later this season if I'm lucky. The photo below shows the stunning Nectaroscordum tripedale that I planted in 2016. I'm hoping they return again this year.
The Nectaroscordum are growing just to the right of Lilium asiaticum 'Landini. I had hoped the two bulbs might share some bloom time but you can see from the dried up Nectaroscordum flower heads that it did not happen.
I'm hoping I have better luck getting the L. 'landini' to bloom in tandem with my new lily, L. asiaticum 'Forever Susan' which I'm planting across a path from 'landini.' I first saw 'Forever Susan' last summer in my friend Cindy's garden and it was a stunner. Cindy's garden was on the WHPS members' garden tour on the same night as mine last June.
In the second photo from the top you will notice L. leichtlinii in bloom (and bud) on the edges of the picture. They are yellow touched with a bit of orange and I am picking up that combo on the other side of the path as well. I already have L. henrii in place (directly below) and I'm adding L. longiflorum 'Apricot Fudge.'
Bulb connoisseurs Brent and Becky Heath describe 'Apricot Fudge' as a very unusual, "almost rose-like" form. It certainly is not typical looking, judging from the photo on their website (below).
Then I saw this Alstroemeria 'Inca Ice' at Avant Gardens and had to have it. Imagine, an Alstroemeria that's hardy in Zone 5. I only ordered one plant because I haven't a clue what they actually look like growing in a garden. And I will believe it's hardy in this zone when I see it. But look at this baby! It would be a swoon-worthy moment if its bloom time managed to cross that of L. 'Apricot Fudge.'
I've gardened for enough years that I am well aware that flowers rarely bloom on a strict schedule or in concert with other plants the way we hope and plan. That's why I am such a fan of foliage: it looks good all season. Foliage combos always work all the time.
These lilies have dramatic flowers but stems and leaves that don't make a big statement or take up a big space. They can be squeezed in between other plants so they disappear once they've flowered. But one can always hope that perhaps one of these lovely floral matches will prove to be made on earth and not just in my heavenly dreams.