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A Christmas Garden 2009


The air is cold and crisp. From a cloudless blue-white sky the sun gleams down on the resting garden. Resting? Don’t you believe it. As we sit down to our festive treats, things are HAPPENING out there.
Everything that next year’s plants need is being provided. Water; well we’ve had more than enough of that. Cold. Yes, plants need cold, some more than others. It tells the plant where in the seasons they are, so, if we have unseasonal weather, such as a mild winter, some plants may bloom early, while others may not bloom at all. I won’t go into double dormancy here. Not on top of all that rich food.
But, needless to say, the garden never rests. The next photo shows this quite clearly.

These young daffodil shoots have been gathering nutrients, making new cells and deep inside the bulb, the buds of next spring’s flowers are already forming. Due to an unusually cold winter here in Cornwall, this particular clump is late. They are usually in flower by now.
Whatever slight disappointments there may be in any garden, there is always a surprise round the corner. The following is just one of three tiny clusters in my garden, enjoying the winter sunshine.

Primroses are so versatile and obliging. They pop up in the most unexpected places and it’s impossible not to smile at such a bright spot of colour appearing on Christmas day.
Let’s not foget the evergreens, which most people only seem to seek out at this time of year, for various forms of decoration. Evergreens never stop. They change gear now and then, but it’s a continuous process being a member of this extensive and versatile family. We’re all familiar with the ‘holly and the ivy’ but many others provide winter colour and form in abundance. Winter sunlight shining through the leaves of Griselinia

or catching the clean bright variegations of the rapidly climbing ivy, also a winter home and shelter for many beneficial insects.

This particular ivy is pruned back in late spring to encourage new growth with its intensely coloured variegation.
Naturally colourful in its own right, the beautiful Photinia ‘Harlequin’ has its colours intensified by a couple of spells of sharp frost. It’s still growing though. Snugged close against the dark stems, new leaf buds are already forming. Apologies. The photo seems to have been deleted.
As I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs, there are also some Daylilies that seem to disregard the ‘acceptable’ growing season and will tick along quite happily until only the severest weather stops them. Frequently the flower form will be distorted or smaller than normal, but even so, one Daylily in bloom on Christmas day makes it all worthwhile.
A gremlin crept in here, which is about par for the course. The photo has appeared at the bottom of the page. The course of true love…and all that.

Finally. What’s that? Sighs of relief? Let’s not forget about the ferns, next to Daylilies, my favourites. Quite a number of these extremely attractive and fascinating plants are evergreen, and provide ground cover and diverse leaf form throughout the dark days of winter.

Yet even those we call dormant are not completely at rest. Nutrients from leafmould are being assimilated into the plant’s system to nourish those delightfully furry bronze, pink or green, sometimes all three, croziers that push their way up in late spring.
Those that are truly evergreen, even though the fronds may sometimes look a little bedraggled, can inspire us to appreciate that although many creatures, including ourselves, DO rest during the short cold days of winter, our gardens very rarely do.

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Pretty for December. I'm meant to be cooking now so merry xmas :o))))

25 Dec, 2009


Lovely Bbb, and it's nice to have you back again. Merry Christmas

25 Dec, 2009


Good blog, Bbumble :o)

25 Dec, 2009


Nice one Bbb - makes a change from the ice and snow I'm looking at

25 Dec, 2009


Is that a Hemerocallis i see ?
It's gorgeous :-)

25 Dec, 2009


Merry Christmas. I hope you had a nice day :o))
Your garden seems to be coping with the bad weather

26 Dec, 2009


MMmmmmmmmmm Spring is just around the Corner look@those Daffs Peeking :) Hope your Christmas Day was Great :)

26 Dec, 2009


It's a beautiful day here with a clear blue sky and sunshine.Spring is on it's way.

26 Dec, 2009


hardly above freezing here and still lots of snow on the ground so I have not been out looking at what mine are doing. hopefully as well as yours bbb.
all the best for 2010 too.

26 Dec, 2009


Snow melted a bit here today,and my snowdrops and daffs are peeping through too :-)

26 Dec, 2009


We are the same as Seaburn ! Still lots of frozen snow, so these photos are a breath of fresh air ! Thank you .......

27 Dec, 2009

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