I passed a neighbor’s yard on my lunchtime walk, and noticed that the Lenten roses were erupting in flower stalks. I knew I had to check my witch hazel.
It’s blooming. Those are not the only flowers, either. At least a quarter of the buds are open. Those little petals roll up like blow ticklers when the temperature drops below freezing; a cold front is breezing in right now.
This is certainly a little early. Earliest? I am not sure. I will have to check.
After 11 inches of snow on November 11, things got quiet weather-wise. Winter did not quite settle in. We got less than two inches of snow in December, and just a dusting on Monday—not enough to stick to the sidewalks. So what happens in the pause, the interregnum, between fall and winter? Continue reading “Interregnum: December, the Fall Into Winter”
I was visiting a client last week and noticed that her white pine, Pinus strobus, was dropping cones. I asked if I could have one—they smell wonderful—and took it back to my office and put it on my desk. Late in the week I noticed a bunch of little winged seeds scattered under it. The cone looked a little fluffed up—like a chilly bird–it had dried out, the scales had popped open, and the seeds had dropped.
I realized as I went through my February photographs that not only am I a little behind on this blog, but February was a pretty icy month. At least it was pretty ice. Since very little else is happening in the garden, I decided to look at ice patterns.
At the beginning of the month, my car acquired winter camouflage, which melted away very quickly.
Autumn clematis is completely charming, even in the winter. It’s the seeds. Of course, the seeds can also be a big problem.
I suspect that the feathers are there to help the seed travel a little further from its parent, but I have never seen seedlings from it.
Unfortunately, autumn clematis is listed as invasive. Be very careful with this plant. I think the reason for its good behavior in my yard is the relatively terrible spot it occupies—dry shade under a silver maple. If that’s not enough, it is underplanted with, among other things, Yugoslavian geranium, Carex pensylvanica, grape hyacinths, asters, Tulipa tarda, and bluebells. And did I mention that I do not water this particular bed, ever?
Poison ivy and garlic mustard encroach and get pulled regularly from the rental behind the fence, so I would say that at least in dry shade in this area autumn clematis is not as thuggish as poison ivy and garlic mustard—and Japanese honeysuckle!
I stepped out this morning just to see daylight, and found that there was only one small patch of snow left in my yard. We had quite a pile after the last set of snowstorms, especially in the spot where the driveway snow and the sidewalk snow were piled together.
The witch hazel usually blooms by the end of January, but I thought it could be a little late this year because of all the Alberta clippers that chugged through at the end of December and in the first half of January.