Fair weather

The assistant gardener is a fair weather sort, plagued by a variety of cold related irritations so that she’s rarely outdoors below fifty degrees. As always, I’m out slip sliding in the garden in ice and snow, and now sinking into the quagmire, no matter the heat or cold, though a visit on a breezy afternoon last week was hurried through when the high was eighteen degrees.

The first flowers of hellebores open as a week of mild temperatures is followed by cold.

Every day, there’s something worthy of a stroll (or a shivering trot) through the garden, even if the something is to survey damage from last night’s freeze. While I seldom miss a flower, I presume that the splendid winter blooms of various witch hazels are wasted on folks (such as my wife) who have the good sense to stay in from the cold. My wife missed snowdrops flowering along the front walk until a recent fifty-five degree afternoon, but this was a bit chilly, so after a quick glance (and a “that’s nice”) she was back indoors.

A week ago, flowers of Diane and other witch hazels were curled tightly to protect from the cold, but blooms opened fully on the second mild afternoon.

So, why bother with winter blooms? And, of course, my wife would not, along with other sensible folk who observe the lengthening daylight, but not more subtle changes in the garden in the last weeks of winter.

Jim’s Pride daphne appears ready to flower, but with cooler temperatures for the remainder of February flowers are unlikely until March.
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6 Comments Add yours

  1. Ruth says:

    Dave,
    Your post today made me smile! Hope your wife gets out more to see the snowdrops now that your weather has warmed up! Cheers. 😀

    1. Dave says:

      Today is a cold rain with some icing. Tomorrow the same, but better weather is on the way.

  2. tonytomeo says:

    For us, then nasty weather forces outside, although not for gardening, but to clear debris from the roads, and to clear drains. It is nasty work. If anything was blooming out there at the time, I did not notice. That is something I sort of miss about the farm. The work was icky there too, but at least we got to see what was blooming as we put it on the truck to go out to nurseries.

    1. Dave says:

      Ice was much worse a few miles north of here, where trees were toppled. Several years ago a maple in the forest fell in an ice storm just before Christmas. It brushed the house as it fell. Fortunately, trees closer to the house have not fallen, yet.

      1. tonytomeo says:

        Our redwoods, firs and pines are so tall that when they fall down, they might brush your house too.

      2. tonytomeo says:

        We get no ice though. Even a slight bit of snow causes serious damage to redwoods. They are not designed to take the weight on their foliage.

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