The quietest month in the garden. No more snow has fallen again in the past weeks, but frosts graze the garden and leave blocks of ice where water once stood.
Along the fronts of the borders, snowdrops hang their delicate heads. This is their first year, and they stand solemnly in ones and twos. I look forward to watching them multiply in the years to come.
The common primroses across the garden have a year’s head start on the snowdrops. They were divided and resettled last year in situ, and sit in satisfyingly dense clumps, sprinkled with their pale flowers.
Winter heather in small pots is adorned still with dainty bells; pulmonaria blooms, some in the ground, others like this one are still in pots waiting to be planted out. The Cyclamen coum ‘Maurice Dryden’ plants are still a delight of painted foliage and butterfly flowers, and nearby the knautia macedonica continues to push out splendid crimson buttons. The tentative rose in the front garden has been punished by the hard frosts, yet its partly unfurled parchment petals stand testament to its will.
I was delighted to find a single spidery scarlet bloom on the young Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Diane’ which I planted in the autumn. Although opinions on planting witch-hazels in small gardens can be harsh due to their vigorous growth and unexceptional appearance the rest of the year, I hope that this one will be a blessing in the centre of our biggest border, particularly at this time of year with its burst of colour. I still find myself pondering where I could add ‘Jelena’ with its tangerine curls, or ‘Pallida’ with its lemon yellow flowers, but the space is not forthcoming.
In the front garden, the first daffodils are beginning to open their golden trumpets. I suspect that these are the Rijnvelds Early Sensation that I bought and planted in the autumn, although I did rather lose track of what ended up where after hours spent digging holes for handfuls of various bulbs, both bought and rescued from the original garden. Already I love their pure golden tones; with the evenings beginning to lengthen ever so slightly, I am avidly watching the front garden light up day by day.
These days are still surprisingly busy for us; I have a mountain of blogs to catch up with and whorls of words whistling around my head waiting to escape onto the screen, so apologies for my sporadic presence online.
To see what is flowering elsewhere this month, visit here.