In fact it doesn’t start again, it’s never stopped! Once again though, it is time for GBBD on the 15th of the month and this month has quite a few little beauties flowering at the moment. Until a few days ago the weather has been very mild for well over a month, in fact it seemed as though November had never ended. Now though, temperatures have plummeted, the wind is straight from the North Pole and we have had one or two slight frosts but they don’t seem to have affected any of the flowers so far.
The camellia in the corner of the garden by the old school, is covered with buds and a few of them have started to open. Last year it was flowering well before Christmas and I’m surprised it wasn’t doing the same this year, considering that it has been much milder than last year.
This lovely shrub has been flowering since the beginning of December and pumping out it’s delicious perfume throughout the woodland. There is still no sign of Daphne b. Jaqueline Postill opening her buds, they are staying tightly shut!
This narcissus was flowering long before Christmas and is now looking a bit dishevelled, but it won’t be long before some of the other Narcissus are joining it.
This Euphorbia is flowering far too soon, usually it is April/May when the flowers open and release their beautiful honeyed perfume.
I can’t detect any perfume at the moment, maybe it needs to be a lot warmer before the perfume is released.
Wild primroses are starting to open all round the garden.
More pulmonarias are opening each day, just the common spotted ones so far.
Iris reticulata Pauline has finished flowering, but now this iris takes over the baton. In reality it is more purple than the photo shows, and it is either Iris reticulata Edward or George.
And the same applies to this one, it is either Edward or George and should be a bit more purple, but not as dark as the previous one. I bought bulbs of both Edward and George and just can’t remember which way round I planted them!
Our first wild celandine, soon they will be flowering everywhere and I will be pulling them out by the handful to try and limit their spread! For now though it is a nice splash of yellow.
Soon we will have a carpet of lilac flowers in the woodland. I planted this when I found it was the larval food for the Orange Tip Butterfly, I can see one or two holes in the leaves so I’m hoping it means that we have pupae of the butterfly nearby.
Other clumps are now starting to grow to the same height as this first clump, but it is still by far the tallest. Sorry about the focus, the camera just didn’t want to focus properly, no matter how hard I tried.
Of course I couldn’t do a post about flowers at this time of year, without mentioning the chaenomeles by the back door. This has been flowering since November.
Of course snowdrops are a must at this time of year, I have to wait until the sun decides to shine before they open up and show their markings.
One of my favourites, little Galanthus woronowii which seeds about nicely and has the most shiny bright green leaves.
Both these clumps are spreading nicely and at the very back is a white hellebore.
Hopefully Galanthus Lapwing is spreading sideways as this is a super bulb with beautiful markings.
G. Diggory has balloon shaped flowers and the texture of the petals is puckered.
As well as snowdrops, the hellebores are decorating the woodland, so I will end with a small selection.
I’m sure there are other flowers opening in the garden, but until the lawn dries out, I will have to give them a miss. January as a month, seems to have the same number of plants flowering as usual for this time of year. Some have been brought on by the mild weather but the colder spell that we are having now will put a halt to that I think and get us more back to normal.
Are you now covered in snow, or are you able to enjoy winter flowers in your garden? Snow is working it’s way down the UK, I wonder if it will reach us?
Thanks must go to Carol at May Dreams Gardens for hosting this monthly meme, please pay her a visit to see what is flowering in the rest of the world.
No snow here so far but also nowhere near as many things flowering yet in my garden. Snowdrops just coming out of the soil. Hellebores almost there and Iris nearly starting to flower. So loving seeing all your spring-like blooms.
Watching the lunch time news Annie, I see that Dartmoor has 2 to 3 inches of snow, but then they are that much higher than we are. The woodland is very sheltered on the north side and with the sunshine today, it is very pleasant in there where you are out of the icy north wind. The witch hazels are just starting to open, a few more days sunshine might do the trick. It sounds as if you will soon have lots of lovely flowers to enjoy,they do make winter pass much quicker!
The weather has turned schedules all around this year. You have lots of delectable blooms. As always I admire the Isis reticulate. The delicate Cardamine pretenses is pretty–must look it up. So nice to have things to help the butterflies.
I think we are all having unusual weather no matter where we are Susie, hopefully ours will settle soon as we are just starting a cold spell. We are lucky living in the south of the country, we have plants flowering all 12 months of the year, so different to when we lived in the north west!
I like finding plants which will help the butterflies, plants which the caterpillars like to eat are important if you want the adults to stay all year, you just have to put up with the leaves being eaten!
I hope one day I can have such healthy looking clumps of special snowdrops.. it’s slow going!
I’m sure you will Jessica. I’ve only ever bought one bulb of each variety and they soon increase, some more quickly than others I admit, gardening certainly teaches us patience!
An interesting tidbit there, Pauline. I am always so wary of just buying one. But after reading your comment I shall give it a whirl!
I remember you saying that you gardened on clay. I lost G. elwesii the first year I moved here and later read that it doesn’t like heavy soils. Do you do anything special. Thanks for the post – I couldn’t resisting jumping in here!
Feel free to jump in any time Cathy!
We do garden on clay but my snowdrops all have plenty of home made compost and leafmould added to the areas where I plant them, then they are mulched each year with more leaf mould so the soil is rather nice now, not the heavy clay I started with.
I only buy one of each new snowdrop as the prices in some cases are so expensive, also some multiply so well, you don’t need to buy more.
Yes, we have a covering of snow. Its not deep but the temps aren’t lifting so its hanging around. I’ve few blooms in January anyway and my bulbs have a bit of growing to do yet.
Wow, what a wonderful selection of blooms you have just now. I’m loving your Euphorbia melliferra but I doubt it would be hardy enough for me up in Perthshire, Scotland. I smiled reading about you planting Cardamine pratensis for orange tip butterfies – snap, so have I. It doesn’t seem to like being disturbed though (I move plants around a lot) so my latest (more mature) plant I’ve positioned beside my wildlife pond and I don’t intend moving it (she says). Wishing you orange tip sightings in your garden, I’m wishing for them too 🙂
We had our first hard frost last night, but I’m sure everything will perk up once the sun comes up over the tree tops.
Like you, we garden for wildlife, it is amazing what turns up. We usually have a couple of Orange Tips in the garden, but I’m greedy, I want more! My plant is in the woodland under a Daphne where it is making quite a carpet now. I was thinking of moving some to make ground cover elsewhere, maybe I’ll just try potting up a tiny bit after reading your experience.
I hope we both get lots of Orange Tips once the weather gets back to normal!
Well, predictably perhaps for January, we have masses of snow and freezing temperatures. When it’s so cold a thick layer of snow is invaluable in the garden as it insulates so well. So no (visible) growth of anything yet! Your lovely photos of the hellebores have really inspired me to take more interest in them and I’ve actually placed an order for a few plants. I really must try again with Cardamine pratensis, I think the last plant disappeared under ‘out of control’ Galium! I am not familiar with Leucojum aestivum. On reading about it I note the common name ‘summer snowflake’?
Yes Denise, the common name for the Leucojum is summer snowflake, there is also a smaller one which is called Leucojum vernum, common name Spring snowflake, but my summer snowflake always flowers first! Crazy!!
I can imagine that your duvet of snow is keeping your plants nice and cosy, mine just have to cope with whatever the weather throws at them. We are having a cold spell at the moment, frosty nights and mornings and this is going to last for a while.
I’m so pleased that I have inspired you to have some hellebores in your garden. They flower stalks do lie down when the temperatures get to freezing, but they stand upright again when the temperature rises, I wish you luck with them.
The snow and ice hasn’t arrived as predicted by the forecast but the wind is strong and feels icy, coming from the north or north-east it makes it unpleasant to work outside but the sun has been shining this morning so that from the warmth of the house the view out is pleasant. I always look forward to your GBBD posts, you always have the ‘right’ seasonal plants. Your reticulata are early as even mine in the greenhouse are only just beginning to flower. The best of all are your glorious hellebores.
The wind is icy here too Christina, but this morning it was wonderfully warm in the greenhouse while the sun was shining on it, it is on the south side of the garage, so nice and sheltered, it was a pleasure to do a few jobs in there.
We have lots of reticulata Iris coming on outside and a few in pots in the conservatory, we always manage to have plenty of flowers in January, definitely not a dull month flower wise. The hellebores make the woodland look quite colourful, they do flop in the frost, but as soon as the sun comes out, they straighten up again.
We have snow, although not as much as forecast. But the real cold is yet to come I think. Despite our mildest December on record I have just one hellebore flower and nothing else showing yet, so lovely to see your spring flowers already!
I have read that the ski resorts haven’t had snow yet, which seems very strange, maybe it’s on its way!
I’m surprised that you only have one hellebore when you have been having the same mild weather as us, maybe yours have more sense as ours are now having to cope with very frosty nights!
It does seem like your garden never stops Pauline! We are having a mild winter, but even so, there is a definite winter break from flowers of any kind. I think it is going to be a tough winter for my plants. We had deep freezes and then shocking thaws- never a good thing. Plants prefer to face the cold under a blanket protection of snow.
I must mark my snowdrops as you have done. Already I am getting confused about what I’ve planted where. I added a few irises last fall and hope they look as pretty as your blue ones do.
P.S. I still have a book for you. You must email me your address.
The mild weather which we have had since the end of November Jennifer, has finally been pushed out of the way and icy wind from the North Pole is coming straight for us!
Sometimes animals or birds pull the snowdrop labels out and then I have to decide where they should be. The larger labels are staying in place better than smaller ones, but it still isn’t a perfect system!
I have just sent you an e.mail, hopefully you will get it this time!
Your blooms are a few weeks ahead of mine. We had a little snow a week or so ago but it only stayed on the ground a few hours before the weather warmed and it melted. We’re so fortunate to live in climates that are mostly snow-free and allow for so many winter blooming plants. Although it’s still winter, when fresh blooms appear, my mind thinks that it’s spring already. Happy GBBD, Pauline!
The weather seems to be very strange Peter, no matter where we are. Like you, we are lucky that plants continue to flower through the winter months, when we lived in the north west, we used to get a rest from gardening in the winter!
The woodland looks like spring has arrived with all the hellebores and snowdrops, only 6 more weeks and it will be spring, not long now!
Another brief question – which snowdrops do you think a beginner should buy? I already have G. ‘Warham’, ‘Sam Arnott’. Want to order more this year. And your hellebores are beautiful. Thanks for sharing.
Ones that have multiplied really well for me are G. Magnet, Atkinsii, Cedric’s Prolific, Little John and Wendy’s Gold. A species that I love is little G. woronowii with bright green leaves and if you plant it on a slope, it seeds downhill and you soon have a drift!
The temperature here has certainly dropped Pauline and we woke up to a cracking frost this morning. A bit of a shock to the system. Do your pulmonarias and cardamine usually flower so early in the year? Here pulmonaria rubra is out which is ‘normal’ but other pulmonarias are showing colour and are way ahead of themselves. Your clump of ‘Lapwing’ is most attractive. I think that it’s in my top half dozen favourites along with ‘Diggory’ 🙂 Your hellebores are most eye-catching as usual.
We had a bit of a frost Anna, the first real one of the winter, but it soon went when the sun came out. Yes, the pulmonaria usually flowers early but the Cardamine is very early this year. I think G. Lapwing will soon join others on my list of “favourites” as it is increasing nicely and has beautiful markings, I do like snowdrops that come back reliably each year!
For the last few years we were in Victoria B.C. at this time of the year and camellias were in bloom in December. In Florence, they seem to be only just coming out now. I would have expected the opposite if only because of the light. There is more daylight here. (The first frost of the season is to come to Florence tonight).
As usual your garden looks amazing. You are lucky to live in a place with a climate so favorable to plant growth (not to mention to be such an accomplished gardener!).
I hadn’t realised that you are still in Florence Alain, I had assumed that you were back home now. We have just had our first frost last night, it has been a long time coming! So far the plants aren’t showing any adverse effects to the temperatures plummeting, they are so adaptable aren’t they?
I agree we are lucky to live down here in the SW of the country, thank goodness the undergardener was transferred here with his job, from the cold north west, but it gardening here was a steep learning curve when we took this garden on.
I have clicked on ‘subscribe’ again today in the hope that I might start getting emails again 🙁 Having checked to make sure that somehow the emails were not being blocked I can’t see what the problem could be – unless someone doesn’t want me to read your blog!
I was thinking about your chaenomeles just the other day, wondering if it was flowering for you as I remember how early it usually is – it’s gorgeous, isn’t it? Do you know what variety it is? I didn’t even think to inspect mine for my GBBD post as mine has nevered flowered at this time of year! Good to see all your other blooms too – what a lovely clump of ‘Lapwing’ snowdrops you have. Mine is on a no-show list so far… 🙁
Lovely to hear from you again Cathy, I hope your efforts work this time. When we were at our son’s this Christmas, I got him to look at the problem again, but he says everything is ok this end, you are definitely on my subscribers list.
The chaenomeles was here before we were I’m afraid, so I don’t know which variety it is and yes, it is flowering it’s head off at the moment.
I too have lost a few snowdrop bulbs, just not showing in the first year after planting. It is so frustrating when they are expensive, these days I stick to varieties that say they are reliable and increase quickly.
I’m amazed you have so many blooms in mid-January. Great Hellebores, especially the red one with the white edging
The weather for all of December and the start of January was so mild Jason, much more than it should have been. We are now having a frosty spell which we have been told will get even colder this week, I just hope the flowers can cope!
I love your Euphoria melliferra! I hope your early bloomers come through the rest of the winter OK! So far the intermittent freezes and the winter rains have turned many of my winter blooms to mush. Your selection of hellebores is especially delightful! I have a soft spot in my heart for their tough but gorgeous flowers.
The euphorbia is pretty good isn’t it Deb, and that is a seedling of the original plant which died many years ago. Sorry to hear that your weather has spoiled your flowers, I have a feeling that might happen to ours later this week when the weather is due to change again.
Hellebore flowers are really bracts, I think that is why they last so long and can cope with all sorts of different weather, the tiny flowers are held inside away from whatever the weather throws at them, isn’t nature wonderful!
That’s an amazing range of blooms Pauline! Lots of colour for mid-January. The euphorbia looks really interesting, I shall have to look out for that one. I love your snowdrops – there were lots of the commoner double one here and I am slowly adding a few different varieties.
Thanks Sue, January certainly has lots of colour, thanks in part to the mild December we had. I’ll have to look for seedlings of the euphorbia, if I find any small ones, I could send you one if you like, just let me know.
My wild snowdrops haven’t started flowering yet, they are up but not showing any flowers yet, it’s usually February when they get going.
It is amazing Pauline how the garden is starting again now and in winter…here we have snow, but I did have a few snowdrops when winter was warm in December before the snow….It is lovely seeing your blooms that i will have to wait months for now!
Just think Donna, you will be enjoying all your bulbs when mine are finished for another year! I’m sure you will have a wonderful display when your weather warms up, in the meantime, stay safe and warm!!
You have so much blooming already! I’m really starting to fall in love with Hellebore! There is such a variety of them. It’s so much fun to go out and see what’s come up and what’s blooming….. I’m looking forward to seeing the progress in your garden as you post!
Hellebores are so gorgeous at this time of year Sally, they make a gardener think that spring has arrived! Each day when I go over to the woodland, there is usually something new to see and photograph, there will be lots more little woodland ephemerals!