End of Month View: a Frosty Reception

It was almost minus 5°C here first thing this morning, and my! how the garden shivered! Both greenhouses were frozen shut despite being heated inside to +5°C and the roofpanes of The Coop were covered in pretty feathery patterns. Foliage on  epimedium and pittosporum were embellished with a furry coating and frilly edges but my snowdrops, witch hazels and hellebores were less happy, bowing down to their harsh temporary master, Jack Frost. End of Month View photographs will be stark in January 2019 but nevertheless let’s start, as we always do, with the view from the back of the house. The Golfer is replacing the fruit cage so any available space is used for construction!

The streamside area, with the cornus and many of my witch hazels, is always the most colourful part of the garden at this time of year, although their colour was muted with frost this morning:

The woodland, with spring bulbs emerging:

The paved area from above and from ground level, with parts of the dismantled fruit cage and some new timbers:

The clematis colonnade and new rose beds, and several pots of ousted geraniums, awaiting new homes:

The woodland edge border from both directions with native snowdrops emerging, many in bud, and several cowering hellebores:

The bold borders:

Inside the working greenhouse some January sown seedlings are awaiting being pricked out, but the Winter Sunshine sweet peas have been planted in the border. The bottom photo is of the fruit cage, currently open to the skies and any passing birds, but while there is no fruit it won’t hurt.

The blue and white border:

The rose garden, with the new terraces  and some new roses about which I will write an update in due course:

The main snowdrop border is still covered with a recent dusting of snow; despite the forecast this is all we have had in terms of wintry precipitation so far but this could change at any time of course – after all, it is winter!

Once I managed to get into the Coop, the sight of this scarlet hippeastrum was enough to warm the cockles of my heart, even if nothing else, and in due course I can anticipate many more flowering bulbs to brighten these cold winter days. By the end of next month, however, we can probably be confident of the first signs of spring. It’s  useful to keep a photographic record of the progress of the garden over the course of the year and compare it with previous years, and Helen the Patient Gardener hosts this monthly meme to encourage us to do so: thank you Helen!

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27 Responses to End of Month View: a Frosty Reception

  1. bcparkison says:

    It does look cold but busy. We have had a slight snow. The trees were pretty but the ground not even covered.

  2. Brian Skeys says:

    I hope you don’t have to much winter weather to hold up the golfer with his construction projects. Stay warm.

  3. It sure has been cold but I do like your frosty views. The temperatures are at a high of 18 degrees right now….balmy!!!

  4. I’ll take your -5C and trade you for our -10F any day.

  5. I’m not surprised that your hellebores were cowering 🙂 A good frost here too Cathy this morning on top of the inch or so of snow we woke up to yesterday morning. It looks as if there is much colour to come in the Coop.

  6. Outside, everything is waiting. Inside, life stirs and blooms.

  7. Ali, The Mindful Gardener says:

    It’s all waiting to happen… I hope that our winter stays safely in January and early Feb and doesn’t linger too long! Your Hippeastrum is a joyful sight!

  8. tonytomeo says:

    And you still find blooms for ‘In A Vase On Monday’?

  9. Cathy I feel the great frost and snow. It is normal that the garden is sluggish but as soon as temperatures rise and a bit of sun changes radically to a garden full of life and flowers. In The Coop the red Amaryllis is divine like the white Hyacinthus: and all the bulbs that you are about to bloom are a marvel. Also, we are in Winter. 🙂 Keep the heat. Greetings from Margarita.

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, just a few degrees will make a huge difference to growth – this week is meant to be milder. Keep safe and warm yourself, Margarita

  10. Chloris says:

    Seeing the hellebores lying flat on their faces it amazes ne how they recover when the weather gets warmer but they do. I am impressed by all your seeds and your new greenhouse looking so smart and organised.

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, when you think that the stems don’t take to being cut you would think that freezing them would turn them into mush…another of nature’s miracles. I am pleased that I invested in another proper thermostatically controlled heater for the new greenhouse as I can be confident temps will not drop below about 5C – and blow the elec bill!

      • Chloris says:

        I agree, I was a little worried about the leccy bill last year but it wasn’t too bad. So this year I’m not worrying, it’s worth every penny..

  11. Pauline says:

    Did you get the latest offering of snow? Our snow still hasn’t melted, I’m hoping it does today so that I can check on all my flowers, hopefully they will all per up again. Drving along has been like drving through a winter wonderland. Surely it is too cold for the golfer to work in the garden?

    • Cathy says:

      No, the snow didn’t reach us but temps have been bitter – the Golfer is very diligent and unable to play golf so likes to keep busy!

  12. krcc says:

    Ah, so this is how these flower bushes look in the winter.

  13. Christina says:

    The cold dark days are so bleak, but the hopeful signs of colour in the coop lift the spirits.

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