As usual with news, the Ladyslipper News is mixed.
I'm absolutely disgusted, disappointed, furious and otherwise miffed off that three of my Yellow Ladyslipper plants in the Sampler Garden have not appeared this spring. They were doing so well last year... now, nothing. I strongly suspect Enemy Action, that is, chipmunks. Chipmunks are a scourge. They tunnel everywhere and eat everything. They upend my pots and dig up anything freshly planted. This is the second time I've lost Yellow Ladyslippers in my garden while those in the woods are fine, so I'm sure it's them.
On the other hand, I'm delighted to report that my one plant of Ram's Head Ladyslipper, Cypripedium arietinum, is looking bigger and more vigourous than last year.
Not sure if it will bloom this summer, but it might. The top leaf is still tightly curled and I didn't want to risk damaging anything so I didn't check. You can see a small Oak Fern, some stems of a tiny Polygonatum and a Hosta in the background.
The Showy Ladyslipper clump is showing above ground.
Not so sure about the Pink Ladyslippers. The ones in the woods haven't appeared yet, although the ones on the hill are up. Odd that the ones which had good water last year might be gone while the ones that got really dry in the drought seem to have done alright. Not as many plants as two years ago, but still some. Looks like more fingers will have to be crossed although I suppose removing some of the small trees nearby which are shading them too much now may be more effective.
Now, nothing to do with Ladyslippers, more like one of those snippets of news they use to fill out a page in the newspaper, my Wood Anemone, Anemone quinquefolia, is spreading nicely beside the cedar it chose to get friendly with. I planted it some distance away, but it seeded itself at the base of a large cedar and has thrived there ever since. It's not a native form, being semi-double, but totally charming.
Back to Ladyslippers, one more good thing. Connaught Nursery has beautiful large potted plants of Showy and Yellow Ladyslippers at the Carp Farmers' Market. I'm going to be there early to get a couple new Yellows for my garden, although since this is the second time I've purchased plants to replace some eaten by Chippies, I may have to grovel a bit...