Despite initial thoughts on the wisdom of the rapid appearance of new shoots and leaves around the garden – in this case, from left to right and top to bottom, crocus (with ubiquitous and unwelcome seed pods from next door’s laburnum, bluebells, wood anemone, Tête-à-Tête narcissi, hemerocallis and what may be brodiaea or more likely muscari – the relative mildness and absence of a ‘real’ winter continues. After the cold winters of the last two years it is easy to forget that there have been several years in fairly recent memory when there was a complete absence of winter harshness in the UK. Those blogging for longer than me may be able to put a date on some of them, but in the meantime we can ramble and garden with fewer layers than we might usually wear in January and enjoy looking out for these signs of early spring, albeit with an eye open for more rain. However, elsewhere in the world the weather has been doing its own thing and other bloggers have had different stories to share.
Whether these new shoots, or indeed the buds on a friend’s apple tree (right), have made the right decision to appear with a flourish like this in mid January will become clearer as we move forward into February and March. Before then, however, the Golfer and I (more I than Golfer) will need to have decided how much of the bargain greenhouse we have just bought on eBay to utilise as a ‘cold frame’ – the options and permutations for the space next to the existing greenhouse are numerous, and our original thinking is further challenged by the likelihood of this acquisition being of better quality than our original. We have to dismantle and collect it so it is as yet ‘unseen’ – but then a decision will need to be made as the Golfer will be itching to get the job done!