Gardening where the sidewalk ends

The Power of Pink April 28, 2009

One benefit of blogging about public spaces is that it’s making me look around a lot more this year and enjoy what’s going on in gardens other than my own. I don’t think I recall having noticed these trees in bloom before, even though they are right around the corner from my house.

Powerful pink flowering crabapple trees

My borrowed camera does not do justice to the intense purply-pink of the flowers. They are stop-in-your-tracks gorgeous.

The petals are thick and fleshy, and looking up into them they almost completely blot out the sky.

Zowie pink crabapple flowers

A few days after I took these pictures, I saw the owner coming out of his house and asked if he knew anything about the trees. He said he thinks they are crabapples, and that they do require a couple of rounds of spraying per year to keep them in good health and blooming so splendidly. My plant bible says that purple-flowering (and -leaved) crabapple, Malus x purpurea, is highly prone to both fireblight and apple scab. If that’s what they indeed are, then the sprays are probably for those reasons. I wonder if they’re using organic/non-harmful controls? I didn’t feel like I could ask that, already having been kind of nosy.

The petals are still hanging in there this week, although they will probably start to come down as the rains return today after a long departure. I’m going to make sure to walk underneath at least once more before their ephemeral beauty departs until next April.

Pink crabapple blossoms


12 Responses to “The Power of Pink”

  1. Michelle Says:

    Ooh, Aah! Even with the inferior borrowed camera the pics are gorgeous. I’m sure it will even be beautiful after the rain with all the petals strewn on the ground.

  2. easygardener Says:

    The blossom is very impressive. You will be having lots of pink snowflakes in the near future 🙂

  3. Catherine Says:

    They are beautiful! I’ve never seen a dark pink crabapple before. Our neighborhood crabapples are just blooming now, I love them.

  4. Racquel Says:

    They are absolutely gorgeous Karen! 🙂

  5. Grace Says:

    I disagree–the borrowed camera does an excellent job of capturing the radiance of the seemingly billions of flowers. I too have been noticing the trees a lot more this year. Right now the pink Dogwoods are in full bloom. I wish I could capture that color in a bottle.

    I used to have a crabapple but it was infected with nasties all the time so I gave it the heave ho. I’ve read that there are more disease resistant cultivars but haven’t done any research.

    Beautiful photos!

    • Jane Says:

      Those lovely trees look like Prairiefire crabapple. We just put one in last year and it’s gorgeous right now. Then again, maybe not since Prairiefire is supposed to have “an excellent resistance to rust, mildew and fireblight.” I’m very sorry to hear that your neighbor needs to spray them. We had hoped to avoid that, and in fact, won’t do it. Malus Prairiefire is on the city-approved list of street trees, even for very narrow parking strips: you would think the city arborist wouldn’t sanction it if it needs much on-going care.

  6. Sue Says:

    Lovely! I’ve been planning on posting about the trees and plants in my neighborhood, too, but haven’t had time yet.

  7. Megan Says:

    I do love this time of year, when the trees are in bloom. It’s so fleeting, it forces you to stop and take notice, at least in other people’s yards, where you don’t have any work to do 🙂

  8. I just love that shade of purply-pink! SO many trees in bloom right now, here, too. Even though we are ahead of you, they are still going strong. My parents had a crabapple in our yard when I was a child…I still remember it well and I used to take nibbles out of the little ‘apples’ it produces…oohh it was so sour;-) I hope you have a lovely day, Karen!!! Jan

  9. Cynthia Says:

    The trees around me are just beginning to flower and I certainly hope I will be able to take their pictures before its too late. The rains have returned here as well and I hope they let up long enough for me to snap some pictures. I was enjoying the break in the rain.

    That is quite a breathtaking tree!

  10. Jen Says:

    I’m looking at a similar spectacle this week – of my flowering cherry. It’s gorgeous now! I wonder if this one sheds the flowers the way mine does. In a week or so the ground is entirely pink! You can’t even see the grass. This crabapple is such a pretty color!

  11. Kristi Says:

    Wow, that is an intense shade of pink.

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