…….there were (clockwise, from top left) the first signs of Crocus ‘Snow Bunting’ in the ex D****’s P**** border; snowdrops ‘Maidwell L’ and an unknown, in a race to be first to open; Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Orange Peel’, all its buds now showing true ‘orange peel’ orange; the surprise emergence of Hellebore ‘Yellow Lady’, new buds on the confused ‘Ellen Picotee’ who also flowered in summer, and the festive H niger ‘Christmas Carol’. Bleak midwinter? Not here – and again we seem to have missed the worst of the rain and wind that lashed the UK yesterday. Dare I mention today’s mildness, blue sky and sunshine? I am beginning to think that perhaps Frances of Island Threads is right and that we do live in a kind of ‘Shangri-La’ – certainly our position on a small escarpment above a river valley may contribute to the local differences in our weather, although we do still share in the minor inconveniences of the river and local lakes flooding which they look set to do.
Whatever the weather, wherever you are, whatever this time of year means to you, thank you to all those who have read and contributed to this blog over the last year – whilst still maintaining the original desire to keep a better record of the garden, sharing it on this blog has brought me so much pleasure and contact with people I feel I can now call ‘friends’. Best wishes to all of you, for now and throughout 2014.