January flowers

In the mild early winter a year ago, hellebores and snowdrops began flowering in December, with witch hazels and winter jasmine following in early January until all were buried under thirty two inches of snow the third week of the month. This winter has not been so warm, probably closer to average, but still with few bouts of severe cold. In this more typical winter, flowers are on a more predictable schedule, a rarity in recent years.

Winter Sun mahonia flowering in mid January.

Winter Sun mahonia flowering in mid January.

A single surprise is the autumn flowering mahonias (Mahonia x media, above and below), that began flowering in November and usually fade in late December, sometimes early January. Mild temperatures accelerate the passing of flowers, but without extreme cold or warmth through mid January, there is only slight fading of blooms.

Charity mahonia in mid January.

Charity mahonia in mid January.

The Vernal witch hazel (Hamamelis vernalis, below) rarely varies from beginning to flower the second week of January, and true to form, its small, ribbon like flowers unfurled a week ago. In a brief spell of cold a week ago the flowers curled tightly, but they have opened again in milder temperatures. The blooms of this witch hazel are small, and not as visible as larger flowers of hybrid witch hazels (Hamamelis x intermedia) that will flower in the next few weeks.

Vernal witch hazel in mid January

Vernal witch hazel in mid January

The first, scattered few snowdrops (Galanthus) have begun to flower, and many more are expected in the next few weeks from early flowering varieties that were recently uncovered from under deep piles of leaves. Hellebores were also uncovered from mounded leaves, and hybrids with Christmas rose genetics (Helleborus niger) should begin flowering shortly.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s