What’s in Bloom Now? Garden Updates May 10 – 17


By Thea Hegland

May is the month when we celebrate the arrival of warmer weather and longer days. It is the time to get outside and dream big; the air is sweet, the trees are gorgeous, grass is green and pretty flowers are blooming and it is all here at Butchart Gardens in the most amazing way.

The Sunken Gardens in Spring

This incredible garden didn’t just happen by chance. Many years ago, the legendary Jennie Butchart dreamed big. Artistic and creative, Jennie had a vision and went to work on her biggest masterpiece. Starting simply with few flowers around the raw landscape, she added trees and shrubs; the layers soon began to unfold and the passionate artist became unstoppable. Surrounded by beautiful flora, Jennie immersed herself in The Gardens and nurtured this oasis for many wonderful years.

With Mother’s Day this week, a visit to The Gardens is a perfect place to celebrate. A mother herself, Mrs. Butchart loved her family and spending time in her beautiful gardens with those she held dear. Inside the historic family residence, visitors can get a glimpse of the gracious hospitality Jennie was renowned for. Inside the elegant Dining Room restaurant visitors can enjoy a traditional afternoon tea or formal lunch in a magical Conservatory filled with unique and interesting flowers or the grand White Room with sweeping views across the main lawn to the sea.

The main lawn, known as the Residence Lawn. Viewable from some spots in the Dining Room Restaurant

Classy on a grand scale, gorgeous floral arrangements filled with old fashioned Lilacs, Bridal Spirea, Tulips and Peonies in many of Jennie’s original early 1900’s vases can be found throughout the residence. Picked fresh from the cutting garden, these arrangements are an integral part of the history. In the old garage of the residence, there are historical photos of the home and a glimpse of Jennie’s flower-filled vases that she collected.

Cornus ‘Eddie’s White Wonder’

Out in the garden there is no shortage of beauty. The astounding Cornus ‘Eddie’s White Wonder’ is at its peak now with several trees located throughout the grounds. Magnificent creamy white bracts capture well deserved attention. The Rhododendron collection is as vibrant as ever with a rainbow colours and soon the Laburnum (Golden chain tree) will greet us with its sunny yellow racemes of pendent flowers.

 Vibrant Rhododendron blooming in the Japanese Garden 

Bring Mom to the garden… she will love it!

Plants that are currently blooming
  • Aesculus (Horse chesnut)
  • Allium
  • Anemonella (Rue anemone)
  • Anthriscus sylvestris ‘Ravenswing’
  • Aquilegia (Columbine)
  • Arisarium probosicideum (Mouse plant)
  • Bellis (English daisy)
  • Bergenia (Elephant’s ears)
  • Brunnera macrophylla
  • Camellia
  • Caltha (Marsh marigold)
  • Centaurea montana
  • Cercis chinensis (Chinese redbud)
  • Chaenomeles (Flowering Quince)
  • Convallaria (Lily- of-the-valley)
  • Cornus florida
  • Cornus nuttallii (Pacific dogwood)
  • Daphne collina
  • Davidia involucrata (Dove tree)
  • Deutzia
  • Dicentra (Bleeding heart)
  • Digitalis (Foxglove)
  • Doronicum (Leopard’s bane)
  • Epimedium (Barren wort)
  • Eremurus (Foxtail lily)
  • Erica (Heather)
  • Erysimum (Wallflower)
  • Fritillaria imperialis (Crown imperial)
  • Gentiana (Gentain)
  • Geum
  • Globularia (Globe daisy)
  • Halesia (Snowdrop tree)
  • Hyacinthoides (Bluebell)
  • Illicium
  • Iris
  • Kerria japonica
  • Laburnum (Golden chain tree)
  • Leucojum (Snowflake)
  • Lysichiton (Skunk cabbage)
  • Malus (Crabapple)
  • Matthiola (Stock)
  • Meconopsis (Blue poppy)
  • Myosotis (Forget-me-not)
  • Narcissus (Daffodil)
  • Ornithogalum
  • Pachystachys lutea (Lollipop plant)
  • Paeonia lutea (Tree peony)
  • Pericallis (Painted daisy)
  • Petasites
  • Polemonium (Jacob’s ladder)
  • Podophyllum (Mayapple)
  • Polygala chamaebuxus
  • Poncirus trifoliata (Hardy orange)
  • Pulmonaria (Lungwort)
  • Pulsatilla vulgaris (Lungwort)
  • Pieris (Lily -of – the valley shrub)
  • Primula (Primrose)
  • Prostanthera (Mint bush)
  • Prunus (Flowering cherry)
  • Rheum
  • Rhododendron
  • Rubus spectabilis (Salmonberry)
  • Schizanthus (Butterfly flower)
  • Skimmia japonica
  • Spiraea (Spirea)
  • Smilacina (False Solomon’s seal)
  • Syringa (Lilac)
  • Trillium ovatum
  • Trochodendron araliodes (Wheel tree)
  • Trollius (Globeflower)
  • Tulipa
  • Viburnum tinus
  • Vinca (Periwinkle)
  • Viola
  • Wisteria