Where have all the flowers gone?

Well, the forecasters got it right this time. I think we in our little part of Devon, got off lightly, compared to the north of the county and further east. When I got up this morning, everywhere was white and the snowdrops and hellebores nowhere to be seen.


Box balls

This is when the structure in the garden shows if you have got it right or not. This is the view from the kitchen window, no I wasn’t going out, it was snowing heavily at the time! I think the box balls and the lonicera hedge look nice with their sprinkling of snow.

Urn in gravel area

The terracotta urn in the gravel area in the back garden shows up well with its snow cover. The mound to the right of the urn is the spreading mass of ophiopogon planiscapus nigrescens, it looks very different covered in snow.


The hydrangea by the front door has collapsed, I wonder why. Looking up the garden, non of the others have collapsed, so I hope it is ok and will right itself soon.


This little hellebore was photographed yesterday, before the snow………


…….this is it now, collapsed under the snow. I know from previous years that as soon as the temperature rises, the stems will stand upright once more, but don’t know if the flower will be ok, that is another matter, the buds will open as usual so there will still be more flowers.

Mrs MacNamara

These snowdrops are Mrs MacNamara which I showed in a previous post, nicely upright with lots of flowers……..

Mrs MacNamara

……this is Mrs MacNamara today, flowers all bent down to the ground on the right, but like the hellebores, they will right themselves and be upright once more when it gets a degree or two warmer.

We can’t say we weren’t warned about this lot of snow, not sure how long it will last, sleet is falling at the moment, hope it doesn’t freeze on all this tonight. The cold weather from the east has brought winter bird visitors from the continent, we had our first redwings and fieldfares this morning, but I don’t think we had any berries for them, they didn’t stay long. I don’t plan to go out again today and think we will stay at home tomorrow too, light the woodburner and curl up with a good book!!

This entry was posted in News and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Where have all the flowers gone?

  1. Liz says:

    Hi Pauline,

    I think you did get off lightly, especially as I’m guessing by now it’s turned to rain/sleet and it washing it all away. Meanwhile we get to put up with it until at least mid-nextweek before the temperatures warm enough to melt it. I’m assuming I’ll be digging/gritting the road again on Sunday ready for Monday – even then I’m not sure I’ll get to work as we’re due more snow Monday.

    Your Hellebore looked lovely… And yep, they do spring back once it’s warmer… I attempted to take photos of mine but they’re also face down in the snow at the moment.

  2. Cathy says:

    Seems not much more than a sprinkling compared to other places – about 6 inches here and still falling, but lightly now – but you had all that rain to contend with instead. Your box balls look lovely in the snow – I wonder if you got your Alan Titchmarsh book for Christmas as taled about how much he loves his box balls and other topiary (as well as sculptures) because of the structure they provide and especially in winter. It’s been lovely to watch the birds, hasn’t it – shame the Big Garden Birdwatch is not this weekend!

    • Pauline says:

      Having seen the pictures on the news, we really have been very lucky.
      Yes, Cathy, I did receive Alan Titchmarsh’s book for Christmas and I agree that the box balls give structure when nothing else is out. Mine make the front garden look interesting through the winter months.
      I put twice as much bird food out this morning and it went in record time, the feeders then had to be topped up!!

  3. Christina says:

    The snow certainly does show the garen’s structure; box always look perfect with a dusting of snow. all the posts I’ve read today show snow; it seems a fascination to us all, but I’ll be glad when its over. Christina

    • Pauline says:

      Christina, I think we are fascinated by it because we don’t often have it, maybe it would be different if we had it for four or five months of the year, then we would just have to forget about gardening!

  4. Kate says:

    I look forward to snow, then go off the whole idea very quickly. I think both you and I have escaped lightly, so let’s breathe a sigh of relief. Mind you, I do love seedheads in snow and some of the effects it brings – good point about structure…

    • Pauline says:

      Hi Kate, we had another sprinkling last night, but not much thank goodness. I remember Dec. 2010 when we had almost 1 ft of snow and some of the effects in the garden were very pretty, but I’m always glad when it goes and I get my garden back!!

  5. pbmgarden says:

    The snow adds another dimension to your lovely garden Pauline. I was away for a couple of days and missed our only snow of the year. It was very light and disappeared within a few hours.

    • Pauline says:

      Most of our snow has gone PBM, we had another little bit last night, but we have been very fortunate compared with the rest of the UK. Trains cancelled, planes cancelled, roads blocked, we’re just not used to it! My snowdrops and hellebores are standing proud again and so is the hydrangea which collapsed, thank goodness, plants just have to cope with whatever is thrown at them!

  6. I do love the way the snow blurs the details, leaving you with just the strongest outlines, and as you say, reveals whether there is any structure still to anchor your eye.

    • Pauline says:

      Hi Janet, snow does pare the garden down to the essentials, so just the strongest shapes show up, there has to be something of interest to look at in the winter, or I think so anyway!! The box balls were all grown from tiny plants, they didn’t take long to reach their present size and I feel they take centre stage every winter.

  7. Anna says:

    Your box balls look like delicious Christmas puds Pauline. It’s amazing just how quickly hellebores, snowdrops and other winter/early spring flowering plants perk up again after the snow and ice. Hope that you have enjoyed that book today 🙂

    • Pauline says:

      Anna, in the winter of 2010 I described the box balls as heavily iced muffins, but yes Christmas puds is just as good a description! Yesterday the flowers were upright once more, the hellebore flower looked non the worse for its experience but Mrs.MacNamara, even though she was upright once more, her flowers had gone brown!
      I did enjoy my book thank you, for once it wasn’t a gardening book ! This time it was the relationship between Elizabeth 1 and Mary Queen of Scots, I’m only about a third of the way through, will keep it for when more snow comes!

  8. Alberto says:

    Hi Pauline! they forecast snow here as well for the passed weekend but fortunately temps didn’t go under 5*C, so we only had snow. I hope your snowdrops and especially the hellebores will recover soon, the one you showed is very pretty!
    And yes, I think you really got a good structure in your garden, I love those box balls but I think you don’t show them very often in full season, are they maybe hidden by other summer plants?

    • Pauline says:

      We got away with it very lightly Alberto, compared to the rest of the country who had rather a lot of snow! The Hellebores and snowdrops are fine thank you, just Mrs MacNamara who isn’t looking very happy, but then she has been flowering for a month already, maybe she has had enough!
      The box balls are in the front garden, between the house and garage, you’re right Alberto, in the summer there are masses of roses billowing over them and they can hardly be seen, but for 6 months from Nov. to April they are the star attraction in that area!

Comments are closed.