Goodbye to 2021

It was only when I stepped out of the back door this morning for my usual ramble that I realised that yesterday was the end of another month – well, I knew it was the end of the year and that we are now in 2022 of course, but in terms of garden record keeping it certainly hadn’t crossed my mind that it was time for a formal look at the garden at the end of December. One day won’t have made much difference, but a few days of temperatures reaching an unseasonal 14Β°C has, with witch hazels, snowdrops and the Winter Sunshine sweet peas in the working greenhouse all putting on a noticeable spurt, very evident in the case of the witch hazels when you see the photos and video.

Chloris published a lovely post about her garden today, toying with dreams of vast manicured gardens, ancient towers and fancy sculptures, but coming to the conclusion that she wouldn’t swap the garden she lovingly created herself and the joy it brings her for any of these dreams. I know just what she means and, despite the perhaps inevitable dissatisfaction with parts of my garden (inevitable because, like most gardeners, I always think things could be better), I know that everything in the garden apart from the hedge, the apple trees and some other self-seeded trees is there because I put it there or planned for it be there, ably asisted by the Golfer in terms of constructing paths and wooden structures, and there is indeed joy great joy to be had in the creation.

2021 began cold, although many winter flowering plants were already ahead of themselves, and a dry and sunny summer made it a great year for roses and the annuals and dahlias in the cutting beds. Projects during the year have been relatively minor, mainly tweaking existing structures or layout, and will largely go unnoticed by the irregular visitor. The lopping of 2 silver birch may be more noticeable and is an action I am still not wholly satisfied with, not helped by an inability to come up with inspiration for something artistic to do with the stumps, left at a heigh of two metres plus. I have also tried to be more selective in my planting throughout the year, not cramming as much in the borders, but still have a long way to go with this…

Unusually, there are as yet no grand plans for 2022, but I suspect that tweaking is here to stay! Before then, here is the garden at the start of the year, with the usual regular views, some spiced up by witch hazels and the glowing stems of cornus:

The woodland, the view from the bothy at the end of it and the same area from the back of the sheds, taken at ground level:

The woodland edge border, with hellebores budding up and native snowdrops pushing through (and the two lopped beeches):

The three Anything Goes borders:

The bubblewrapped greenhouse and the empty cutting beds:

The blue & white border, rose garden and path between the main borders:

The snowdrop border and view back towards the house, with the recently pruned wisteria:

And finally to the Coop, with late flowering crysanthemum and emerging spring bulbs, and the Coop Corner beyond it, where the recent lifting of the sagging pink pussy willow leaves the bed looking less overgrown, albeit still needing attention:

Finally, here is the usual end of month video, this time including close-ups of the witch hazels, and before you watch it please accept my warmest wishes for the best possible 2022!

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27 Responses to Goodbye to 2021

  1. Your garden seems to be in stasis – just waiting those few weeks before new growth will shoot up once again! Happy new year Cathy!

    • Cathy says:

      And it’s always amazing what starts shooting early, like some of the alliums. And when the weather is mild as it was for a few days recently, some of the shrubs develop fresh foliage too

  2. bcparkison says:

    As we turn the page we plan and wait for color to reclaim the sleeping beds.

  3. Happy New Year, Cathy!!

  4. Chloris says:

    Thanks for the mention Cathy. I enjoyed the tour of your garden. Your witch hazels are looking lovely. And I’m looking forward to seeing more of your snowdrops.

    • Cathy says:

      You are welcome – I have read your post but couldn’t log in to WordPress on my new tablet to comment on it so shall go back on my laptop when I have a moment, as it was such a lovely post. The witch hazels have almost all responded to that mild spell, but hopefully will still be in bloom for our Feb opening

      • Chloris says:

        Thank you Cathy. I have been working in my winter garden today and I am amazed at how early everything is. My Witch hazels are out too.

        • Cathy says:

          I would say that most things here were earlier last year – witch hazels, snowdrops and hellebores were out in relative abundance before Chrstmas then.. Glad you are enjoying your witches too

  5. Going Batty in Wales says:

    Happy New Year! You may not have big plans for your plot this year but a garden is never finished – thank goodness!

  6. Solitaire says:

    It’s been so warm so far our garden is still showing remnants of fall

  7. pbmgarden says:

    Happy New Year. Good health and happiness to you.

  8. Anna says:

    I enjoyed your December video clip Cathy and rushed around after you accompanied by that most stirring music πŸ˜†

    • Cathy says:

      Sorry, does it come over rushed, Anna …?! I know the first few I did seemed really long so I tried to keep them briefer. Perhaps I should always watch them all the way through myself…

  9. Anna says:

    P.S What variety is the beautiful witch hazel at the start of the video please?

  10. Happy New Year! I loved the tour of your garden. What an interesting and inspiring place!

    • Cathy says:

      Thank you – I have only been adding a video for a year and a bit, and I think it gives a far more rounded idea of the garden than just the two dimensional photos

  11. Cathy says:

    Loved the tour again. The coop looks cosy, with so many new shoots springing up and the remains of that amazing Chrysanthemum too. I am curious about the terracotta object near the door to it. Is it for insects? Was it a chimney pot? Great to see your witches have started flowering. πŸ˜ƒ

    • Cathy says:

      And I haven’t forgotten about an annotated map, Cathy – the end of he months just come round too quickly! It was intriguing how the pots of spring bulbs in the Coop all seemed to start sending up shoots at the same time…πŸ˜‰ Hmm, I am tryig to think what you are referring to near the Coop door (without lookung through the video!) – there is a terracotta chimney pot on the left, with a pot in it, but on the right in front of the water butt are three bricks stacked vertically on their sides with bits of bamboo and bark stuffed in the holes for insects, as you suggested. The next time I mix up some mortar I need to mortar them together as they are not very stable!

  12. Here we are on the other side of the shortest day of the year. Patience for gardeners who live in cold climates is required. It has been warmer than usual here as well. I have daffodils up and my neighbor has some blooming! Crazy!
    A non gardener would need a lot of imagination to see what glory your garden will become in a few short months, but true gardeners revel in what will be!

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