It’s not been a January with a lot of flowering outside the house. So for Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day I am leading off with one of the orchids that is astounding inside the house. I counted 32 blossoms and buds on this one this morning. Even the buds are very attractive as it arches over the kitchen counter.
But the outside does have a couple of noteworthy elements. In particular thanks to the prodding from Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day (thanks to Carol and Elizabeth Lawrence) I see that the Witch Hazel ‘Diane’ is not only blooming but has been doing so for several days.
This is the first time Diane has been earlier than the conventional yellow witch hazel in blooming.
There are also many instances of snowdrops blooming about the yard. They are always here for early bloom.
But the Helleborus niger ‘HGC Jacob’ has been smashed down by the snow and is not very presentable at the moment. And the other Hellebores are all taking there own sweet time to come into bloom. So it’s more fun to contemplate the things about to come into bloom. The Adonis are all above ground and the Cyclamen coum are showing pink buds. A new early flower is the Gymnospermium in the Alpine bed.
Nearby is the one of the Saxifrages that is exquisite even without flowers.
There are also flowers about to happen in the greenhouse, especially the Ferraria. I have never had Ferraria flowers before so it should be quite interesting to see how these turn out.
Of course it wouldn’t be an official posting this winter if I didn’t show one of the Oxalis in bloom. They have been so endlessly rewarding it’s hard to sing their praises high enough.
It looks like the weather is going to remain seasonal (meaning cold) so it may be a while before anything else jumps into bloom.
This morning it was 6 degrees when I woke up. That’s about 10 degrees below what I consider acceptable for our location and I mean to write a letter of complaint to the weather gods. It was the biggest challenge that the greenhouse has had to face. Last night as I was watching the greenhouse temperature dip to 36 degrees when the outside temperature had fallen to 11 degrees by 1am I put on my down jacket and carried another heater out to the greenhouse to stabilize the temperature. That seemed to do the trick because the max-min thermometer showed that was as low as the greenhouse temperature got last night. It never got above 16 degrees outside today and we’re headed for another single digit overnight so I just left the supplementary heater in place.
The greenhouse remains a place of refuge for weather like this. Another oxalis species has come into bloom.
and I even found a ladybug exploring the greenery last week.
I have no idea what these temperatures will mean for the outdoor plants. Some plants that I have put in have never seen temperatures this low. The evergreens are tightly wrapped up against the cold.
The Rhododendron carolinianum is one of the first to bloom but I think the plant certainly looks stressed at the moment. I’m particularly concerned about the camellias as this is certainly pushing the edge for some of them. Helleborus niger ‘HGC Jacob’ was looking great before the snowstorm last Thursday, but it’s pretty smashed and browned off at this point.
At the same time the Lathyrus aureus has popped above the ground and seems completely untroubled by the temperatures.
Perhaps I’ll have more promising whispers of spring this weekend when the temperatures are supposed to climb back to the 50’s.