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For the past month, I’ve been walking a few miles every day around my neighborhood because the plants are in full bloom and the weather is really nice. It’s such a pleasant experience watching all my neighbor’s yards come to life.

My favorite in my backyard bloomed last week and I look forward to it every year. It’s a viburnum bush and the variety is ‘Chinese Snowball’. I wrote about it years ago and its white puffs brings me so much joy each spring when it blooms. I always bring a bouquet of stems inside and put them on the mantel and over the course of a few days the petals fall like snow.


My neighbor has a flowering Western Dogwood in her front yard and I walk past her house on purpose just to admire it. Sometimes I catch her out front with her spaniel taking care of her yard and I pet her dog while we chat for a little while.


Another neighbor has a Variegated Mallow with purple blooms, but it’s the leaves that are my favorite, up close each one looks like paint splattered abstract art.

Then there’s my neighbor with the tree taller than their house with giant purple blooms. I thought at first was a Jacaranda but later found out it’s a Royal Empress tree. Every time I round the corner I have to stop and stare.

There are dozens more, my neighbor with the stunning cactus garden, another neighbor with rows of unique tall colorful planters, and the neighbor with the incredible rose garden, the list goes on.

If ever I don’t know the name of a plant when I’m out walking or hiking, I use the free Picture This app and it instantly identifies it. It also has a “problem identifier” which will tell you why your plant is suffering with just a photo.

Now it’s your turn! What blooms in your yard do you look forward to every year? Do you have a favorite? Or in a neighbor’s yard nearby?

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