|Flowering Mayday Tree|
Today, I'm talking about trees.
The selection of plant materials that will actually live and thrive in Alberta is tiny, especially when compared to Ontario, British Columbia, or other more moderate climes. Our climate is tricky - not only can we have temperatures from minus to plus 30 degrees Celsius over the course of the year, but we also have the Chinook winds I mentioned in a previous post. It is actually the Chinooks that pose the biggest challenge for plant materials, because the ground can thaw and then freeze several times over the winter. It takes a special plant to survive that cycle. Even Edmonton, which is further north but doesn't have the Chinook winds like southern Alberta, has more variety in plant materials.
Out of all the trees we can successfully grow in southern Alberta, the Mayday Tree (Prunus padus commutata) is my favorite! In the spring, the Mayday Tree's leaves are almost the first to appear, and then about a week later the tree erupts with clusters of creamy white flowers. They are the first showy trees of the year, and their flowers smell absolutely wonderful!
My yard has two Maydays! And they've just started to flower. I love the scent - I think I could live under their branches for the next week while the flowers are blooming.
Do you have a favorite tree or first sign of spring?