I love this time of year when all the tiny weed flowers begin blooming. Tiny weed flowers are a sure sign that spring is just around the bend. I’ve already noticed a few butterflies flitting about in our yard!
In earliest spring after a long winter’s nap, the early butterflies and bees are hungry for nectar. Tiny weed flowers provide a sweet buffet for our earliest pollinators.
If your goal is to rid your yard of these plants, I encourage you to look at them in a different light.
A Few of My Favorite Early Bloomers
The plant pictured above is Hairy Bittercress (Cardamine hirsute). It’s growing in clumps all over our neighborhood right now. The flower seeds pop and spread easily; the tender leaves are peppery and can be used in a salad. And like I said, the pollinators love the nectar.
Corn Speedwell (Veronica arvensis) blooms in a carpet of minuscule purple flowers. It likes to fill in the tiny bare spots in your lawn and probably thinks it’s doing you a favor by being there. So you may as well enjoy its delicate early spring blooms.
I may be the only person who likes common henbit (Lamium Amplexicaul). But it’s true. I do. And I know it’s a nuisance for farmers, but look how pretty it is.
I’ve always been curious about who decided which blooms became cherished and which were labeled as pests…
From the Eyes of A Child
When we were kids, we loved all the early-blooming flowers that dotted our yard. We picked them, wove them into our hair, made thimble-sized bouquets. Never did we consider them to be weeds. After all, weeds grew in the fields.
Somewhere along we way, society equated perfect lawns with the American dream. We decided yards should be like indoor-outdoor carpet, a complete monoculture, crew-cut with neatly trimmed edges. But nature isn’t neat or trim. And trying to fight nature is a costly, on-going endeavor, not to mention, it’s not healthy for the environment.
I’m happy to see all the tiny weed flowers again. Celebrating them, in fact.
Other Early Bloomers
We do have other early bloomers in our garden that aren’t weed flowers. These certainly make the early pollinators happy!
Plant crocus in large swaths so the butterflies can see the color more easily. (They love the color purple!)
This tiny pale pink flower, Carolina Spring Beauty (Claytonia caroliniana), is actually a spring woodland ephemeral that blooms before the tree canopy develops. The bees love it!
Lenten Roses (Helleborus x hybridus) provide lots of early nectar. And they are long-blooming.
Isn’t nature grand?
Grace Grits and Gardening
Farm. Food. Garden. Life.