May is the most floriferous month in my opinion. Everything seems to spring into life as the soil warms up and the daylight hours increase. Trees are green once again and many are full of enticing blossom, but the ones that are noticeable in Cornwall are the Rhododendrons and Azaleas. Cornish gardens are simply at their best from March to the end of May.
All these photo were taken in Trelissick Garden.
This month is when the Allium comes into flower filling the gap between tulips and summer perennials. These plants, known as the ornamental onion, are grown for their showy flower heads which come in a wide range of sizes and shades of purple, blue, white and yellow. Even when the plant dies back the seed heads remain as attractive sculptures in the garden.
Bees love them too.
A charming, old-fashioned cottage garden plant with bonnet-shaped flowers, often two-tone and with long graceful spurs these herbaceous perennials are invaluable for flowering in May and early June .
Aquilegias fill the seasonal gap between the last of the spring bulbs and the first of the summer flowers. Self-sown they can look charming naturalised amongst shrubs and roses although some people find the colours become muddied. They lend themselves to cottage or semi-wild settings. Most relish dappled shade. They love deep, rich soil.
Two different birds lend their names to this flower – Eagle and Dove (in Latin, eagle = aquila and the dove = columbus). The petals are supposed to resemble the outspread wings of these birds, and the spurs their arched necks and heads. All aquilegias have wonderful foliage that emerges early in the year, creating clumps of bright green among the sharp verticals of daffodils and other bulbs.
Iris is the flower of the Greek goddess ‘Iris’ who is the messenger of Love and uses the Rainbow to travel.
A blue iris symbolises faith and hope.
Iris confusa or the bamboo iris. It is a rhizomatous perennial plant, native to Western China. It has flowers which range from white to a soft lavender or pale blue in colour, with orange-yellow crests and purple dots. The plant’s broad, shiny leaves are attached to bamboo-like stems. Wikipedia