Winter blooms

In mild recent winters, and even when temperatures plunge a few degrees below zero (Fahrenheit) there will be flowers in this Virginia garden. With mild temperatures there will be more blooms, earlier, in January instead of later in February, but there is not a winter day without flowers.

Flowers of witch hazels, mahonias, and snowdrops curl inward in freezing temperatures, and stems of early flowering hellebores droop to the ground for protection. This is interesting if you care to notice such things, which is why I’m outdoors so often on days that are uncomfortably chilly. On the next afternoon above freezing, flowers are back, fully opened, and for many winter bloomers this cycle continues for a month, or longer.

While some gardeners might not venture outdoors even once through the winter months, here there’s always something flowering to make the trip worthwhile. Without leaves of deciduous trees and shrubs, and with perennials dormant, the overall appearance of the garden isn’t much to look at until April, and with the number of trees and shrubs I don’t think it peaks until May. But, there are plants of interest every day, all through the year, and even on the coldest days I’m out in the garden.

Below, are two slide presentations, one from photos of the garden in January and February 2020, followed by early spring (March and April) of this past year. All photos are in the order they were taken, so a progression can be seen.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. Carolyn Larkins says:

    Thanks for a wonderful example of winter color. Wish I had a little more space!

    1. Dave says:

      Since I must be outdoors as much as possible I find as many spaces for winter flowers as possible. Hellebores can be fit into tiny spaces.

  2. Candace Hoffman-Kiman says:

    Adore these videos of your garden. An inspirations to get out there in the cold and do more.

    1. Dave says:

      As always, I need no additional inspiration to be ordering and planting during the winter months, but I do enjoy occasionally going back through the year’s photos. Sometimes while going through photos from two or three years prior I wonder “what happened to that one?”

  3. Olga MITCHELL says:

    Thank you for the reminder to visit my winter flowers: edgeworthia, native witch hazel (not very showy but still…), winter sweet (such divine sniffing), sweet box, and red camellia buds. Winter jasmine is still shut tight. What a lovely late afternoon stroll in the snowy garden.

    1. Dave says:

      Today, the neighborhood is green, but this shaded garden remains snow covered. Hellebores are beginning to emerge from beneath the snow, and with a few mild days I’m hoping that buds of witch hazels will begin to swell.

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