Early Spring in Alberta

Unfortunately I’ve come down with a spring cold, so while I’d prefer to be outside cleaning up my beds, planting my spinach and radishes, or just enjoying the lovely weather, I’ve been stuck inside feeling terrible and living in front of the television (it doesn’t sound that terrible, but trust me, it got old after the first day). Anyway, before this curse arrived, I was able to get outside and snap a few photos of things growing in the garden last week.


The first flowers to bloom in my garden are always these tiny crocuses. I remind myself every year to plant more in the fall but I always seem to forget when the time comes. I think once the remaining grass in our front yard is removed, I’ll make sure to plant a ton of different crocuses along the front of the beds.

Wild Rose

My prickly rose (also known as the Alberta Wild Rose) is the first of my roses to get leaves (I left the berries on for the birds but it seems they didn’t want them). I wrote about this rose in one of my very first blog posts last year here. I can’t wait until the intoxicating smell of the flowers arrives again!

Tulips & Alliums

This isn’t the prettiest sight from my front yard, but the tulips and alliums are coming up through last year’s corpses that I still need to clean up. The tulips will be blooming in a couple of short weeks.


The rhubarb is going to be way bigger than last year, I can already tell. 

I wish I had more energy for a longer post, but I am going to attempt to nurse this cold in hopes that it will go away.

Is anything coming up in your garden?

Prickly Rose

This year my prickly rose put on an amazing show (the best one yet). Alberta natives would recognize this as the Alberta Wild Rose. These roses actually grow wild in forests, ditches, alleys – pretty much everywhere. They smell absolutely wonderful, which was originally why I had planted mine, but they also produce rose hips that can be used for a wide variety of purposes. The hips from these particular roses are used in preserving (jams, jellies, syrups), in teas, and for medicinal purposes (treating a sore throat, acting as a natural laxative, preventing urinary tract infections, and treating headaches and dizziness). If you’re lazy like me, you can just leave the hips on the plants and the birds will eat them during the winter.


The only real downsides to this rose is that the blooming time is pretty short and the plants grow extremely tall. Mine is about 8 feet tall now and I am actually considering cutting it down quite drastically in the fall. I had a bit of an adventure last weekend when I decided to tie the branches with some twine and staple that to my fence in an attempt to control it a bit – it is at the back of my yard near the back gate and my husband was being attacked by it every time he would walk by to and from the parking spot in the alley. I made the stupid mistake of not wearing long sleeves or leather gloves because I didn’t realize how painful the branches would be and I also thought it would be a 3 minute job. Wrong. So so wrong. Trust me, wear long, thick sleeves and some leather gloves if you’re going to handle this plant. It really, really hurts. I’m planning to keep the painful branches when I cut it back and throw them onto a raised bed during the winter so the neighborhood cats won’t be tempted to use it as a litter box. And although these grow fairly tall, they do not spread and I haven’t noticed any suckering with mine.


I’ve already said that these roses smell absolutely wonderful, but there really is no way to describe it. This is definitely one of those plants that I smell and immediately think of childhood summers, especially right after it has rained and they’re still damp. Tell me about the plants that give you that reminiscent feeling.