Welcome spring to the mountain region with these eye-catching early bloomers.

June 09, 2015

The first burst of garden color is often dusted with snow in the mountain states.

Winter-flowering annuals such as pansies (Viola x wittrockiana) add a vivid contrast to snow cover.

Corsican violet (Viola corsica), a wild Mediterranean variety with 1-inch purple flowers, offers staying power until late fall. Zones 4-9

American pasqueflower (Pulsatilla patens) has goblet-shape purple blossoms and is hardy to an altitude of 11,500 feet. Zones 4-7

Sweet William (Dianthus 'First Love') produces mounds of flowers that change from pure white to deep rose, blooming constantly from April to October. Zones 4-9

Basket-of-gold (Aurinia saxatilis) and the tiny blue forget-me-not (Myosotis sylvatica) cure spring fever. Basket-of-gold is hardy Zones 4-8; forget-me-not is hardy Zones 5-9.

Winter-hardy gazania (Gazania krebsiana 'Tanager') blooms nonstop from March until the heat of summer arrives. Zones 7-10

Lungwort (Pulmonaria longiflora 'Roy Davidson') breaks winter's spell with showy sprays of blue, bell-shape flowers and blue-green leaves speckled with silver. Zones 5-8

Blue star creeper (Isotoma fluviatilis) puts an end to the winter doldrums. Star-shape blue flowers are abundant from spring to late autumn on this rugged perennial creeper. Zones 5-9

Candytuft (Iberis sempervirens) attracts early butterflies but its white blooms are distasteful to foraging deer. Zones 5-9


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