Spring in the garden: What you can see blooming in Washington’s public gardens in spring

Blue Columbine at Chase Garden in May. Photo by Angie Narus.

Early spring is one of the most colorful times of year in coastal Washington State and along Puget Sound as flowering trees and spring flowers start to bloom. Many of the gardens also hold spring plant sales and Mother’s Day events. These plant sales are the place to get plants that are hard-to-find plants and ones that make up the garden landscape.

As early as February, the symphony of flowers starting to bloom include:

  • crocuses (late February)
  • white magnolia blossoms (early March)
  • pink cherry blossoms (early March)
  • daffodils and tulips (mid March)
  • red camellias (early to mid March)
  • hellebores (early March)
  • primroses (late March or early April)
  • petunias and pansies (late February or early March)
  • violets
  • flowering ground covers

Early-blooming rhododendrons are also reaching their peak in spring, and buds start to come out on mid-blooming rhodys, azaleas, and many other flowering shrubs.

By the end of April, blue hydrangeas, white flowering dogwoods, lilacs, irises, roses, trilliums, mid-blooming rhododendrons, and clematis will be added to the mix.

The majority of gardens in my book, Walking Washington’s Gardens, are open year-round, and other open annually in April or May.

Lilac Beauty from the Hulda Klager Lilac Garden. Photo by Angie Narus, 2013.

Photos by Angie Narus

A tulip flower at the Washington Park Arboretum. Photo by Angie Narus.                                 Irises at Albers Vista Gardens in April and May. Photo by Angie Narus.