Bloom Day – January 2018

While most of my garden looks rather torn up at the moment (making lots of muscle heavy, time consuming changes that take me forever), there are some things worth noting. Although Christmas was indeed a white one, we’ve had a very mild and unusually dry winter. Alas, things they are a-blooming. Or, at the very least in bud…

Clematis cirrhosa ‘Wisley Cream’ is blooming in its pot, waiting for a permanent home.

Rosa ‘Étoile de Hollande’ never really stopped. Which, to me, is somewhat disconcerting…

Helleborus – probably ‘Jacob’ or one of his wintry white pals.

As I recall, I bought this Hellebore because of its fabulous marbled leaves, but now that I think about it, the color isn’t all that bad either.

My favorite out of the ones that are a little further along right now is this one, though. I just love those mottled markings. I wish I knew its name… Here, it’s planted in a big pot with a Holboellia coriacea, a ‘Gilt Edge Eleagnus, and droopy Carex trifida ‘Rekohu Sunrise’. This pot is the perfect example of my cramscaping tendencies… sigh.

Schizostylis ‘Oregon Sunset’ just won’t quit. What a great bulb!

Trusty old Camellia sanguinea’ Yuletide’ has been at it for a while, and won’t stop for months. Let me know if you get tired of me posting pictures of it – it feels a little repetitive to me – but this is SUCH a garden work horse. And it does this in rather deep shade. Pretty amazing, if you ask me…

Mahonia ‘Charity’ has been at it for a while, and is starting to wind down.

Abutilon ‘Jerry’s Red Wax’ has apparently grown in confidence after surviving our last winter outside, and is still putting out sporadic blooms. I’s so glad he didn’t die!

Eryngium proteiflorum put out a surprise bloom last month. It’s still there. I need to find this one a spot where it can shine, and expand to its heart’s content! Love all that silver!

Budding Euphorbia rigida planted with ornamental cabbage in a pot out front.

Here is another Euphorbia rigida that has had quite different growing conditions. It’s interesting how it affects both color and bud size.

Edgeworthia papyrifera or Chinese Rice Paper Bush in full, fuzzy anticipation. Soon, the entire shrub will be covered in marvelously fragrant yellow blooms.

A Sarcococca confusa perfumes the front entry this time of year. The vanilla-like fragrance wafts over to our delighted neighbors, who were mystified as to where it was coming from. The flowers are rather small, but ever so mighty. Black berries follow, and it is evergreen and tough as nails. Mine is underneath the giant magnolia in deep, dark, dry shade and performs like a champ, year after year.

When the Sarcococca is done, the Daphne will take over. This is a new one in my garden – D. ‘Mae-Jima’. It’s variegation is heavier than the D. atrovariegata, which has been holding court out front, perfuming the neighborhood, for over a decade. This one was planted in the backyard this fall. Hopefully it will establish itself as beautifully as the one in the front. Can’t have enough of that scent!

Remnants of autumn’s glory are the Fatsia seedheads. Love them for as long as they last.

In a month of two, this monstrously huge Clematis armandii ‘Appleblossom’ will be smothered in…. well, apple blossoms.

Had to zoom in so far that the picture is fuzzy, but hopefully you can see it. My Magnolia grandiflora hasn’t quite either. Most of what it currently sports, are those decorative cones, but there are buds braving the odds, all over.

Last but not least, blooming on the inside, is Billbergia nutans – Queens Tears. Such a treat!

Head over to Carol at May Dreams Gardens to see what is going on in her garden, and many others the world over. Right now the American Midwest is covered in snow, and suffering unusually debilitating subzero temperatures. Meanwhile, we have an unusually warm winter. I may have a lot going on in my garden by comparison, and although I superficially enjoy its bounty –  frankly, it worries me. Here is to a 2018 where the US backtracks on its current idiocy in withdrawing from the Paris Accords, and publicly and officially proclaiming that climate change is a hoax. It’s not. I, and most other sentient Americans (wherever in this expansive country they happen to be) just need to peek outside to see that it’s very real, and happening right now.

About annamadeit

I was born and raised in Sweden, By now, I have lived almost as long in the United States. The path I’ve taken has been long and varied, and has given me a philosophical approach to life. I may joke that I’m a sybarite, but the truth is, I find joy and luxury in life’s simple things as well. My outlook on life has roots in a culture rich in history and tradition, and I care a great deal about environmental stewardship. Aesthetically, while drawn to the visually clean, functional practicality and sustainable solutions that are the hallmarks of modern Scandinavia, I also have a deep appreciation for the raw, the weathered, and the worn - materials that tell a story. To me, contrast, counterpoint, and diversity are what makes life interesting and engaging. Color has always informed everything I do. I’m a functional tetrachromat, and a hopeless plantoholic. I was originally trained as an architect working mostly on interiors, but soon ventured outside - into garden design. It’s that contrast thing again… An interior adrift from its exterior, is like a yin without a yang. My firm conviction that everything is connected gets me in trouble time and time again. The world is a big place, and full of marvelous distractions, and offers plentiful opportunities for inquiry and exploration. I started writing to quell my constant queries, explore my discoveries, and nurture my curiosity. The Creative Flux was started in 2010, and became a catch-all for all kinds of intersecting interests. The start of Flutter & Hum at the end of 2013 marks my descent into plant nerd revelry. I occasionally contribute to other blogs, but those two are my main ones. For sure, topics are all over the map, but then again - so am I! Welcome to my blogs!
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23 Responses to Bloom Day – January 2018

  1. Alison says:

    I must remember to keep an eye on my Bilbergia nutans in the greenhouse. I always tuck it away under a table for the winter, and at some point I suddenly realize it’s blooming. It’s probably not far behind yours. I think a Yuletide camellia might be in my future.

  2. cavershamjj says:

    Lots of floral action there! What do you do with the fatsia flower head once it’s done?

    • annamadeit says:

      I usually just let them fall off. I sometimes use them in bouquets or in Holiday arrangements/wreaths. Didn’t quite have my act together this year, though – the only one I made, I gave away. Next year… 🙂

  3. annamadeit says:

    Yeah, Bilbergias are sneaky. Mind you, mine is tucked upstairs and I don’t spend a lot of time up there. So when I finally saw it, it came a such a nice surprise. Made my day!

  4. Leslie says:

    Beautiful blooms and I love the word ‘cramscaping’ of which I am occasionally guilty too.

  5. tonytomeo says:

    Billbergia nutans! I did not know that was around anymore! I still have a piece of one that grew at my home back in the 1980s. I split it up and gave it all away except for only a few that almost died back when I was unable to care for them. They are remarkably tough.

  6. Your winter buds and blooms are beautiful and I especially enjoyed the photos of you Eryngium proteiflorum and Hellebores. Happy Bloom Day!

  7. Peter Herpst says:

    Today, we had a record breaking (for this day) high of 64 degrees. Like you, I’m superficially enjoying the warmth and blooms but worry about the broader effects of climate change. On the bright side, I always thought it would be grand to live in California. Looks as if it’s climate may be moving here. Beautiful blooms my friend. .

  8. rickii says:

    I wish you would step back and give us a shot of the whole cramscaped pot. The peek you provided left me wanting more. The Queen’s Tears are spectacular. Having just watched all of season one of The Crown and the first episode of Victoria, I can imagine plenty of reason for tears to flow.

    • annamadeit says:

      Rickii – I keep meaning to watch that – it looks interesting. Just for you, I’ll put a shot of the entire pot in the Foliage Follow-Up post tomorrow. That little Hellebore is the only thing blooming in it, and the flowers are nodding so you can barely see them without moving a curtain of Carex and Mahonia. It will hopefully grow taller still… 🙂

  9. Kris P says:

    Torn up it may be but there’s a lot of beauty in your garden. And we both have Billbergia nutans blooms!

    I share your concerns about climate change. While acknowledging that judgments can’t be based on the occurrences in a single year, the science behind global warming and its impact in intensifying weather extremes is clear-cut, despite the refusal of the current resident of the White House and his equally imbecilic minions to credit it (much less act responsibly). If 3 major hurricanes, epic arctic blasts, fires across both Northern and Southern California and mudslides don’t bring the message home, I don’t know what will, although I have to wonder if the tune might change if/when Mar-a-Lago gets swallowed up by the ocean.

    • annamadeit says:

      Amen to that last part. I have actually harbored secret malicious hopes to that effect. Just to see what would happen…

      I might have to hire some muscle to help me finish my many lingering projects – I’m just not physically strong enough to do the work in a timely fashion!

  10. Oh that Schizostylis…it’s one I keep meaning to add to my garden. Also I’m glad to see your Eryngium proteiflorum is still shining on. Both of mine (in the ground and in a container) are doing okay, maybe I’ll be blessed with a bloom someday…

    • annamadeit says:

      That Eryngium is in a pot – I’m frantically racking my brain to try to find the best possible spot for it – it’s so cool. If the Schizostylis multiplies, I’ll save you some.

  11. Pauline says:

    So many lovely flowers, its amazing how many there are at this time of year and you have a wonderful selection.

  12. Pingback: Foliage Follow-Up Day – January 2018 | Flutter & Hum

  13. Jenni says:

    Lovely post!! You have such a variety of blooms right now. And a new macro lens!! Well done! I’ve been a little worried about how much is awake or..not even asleep during winter. It’s quite disconcerning. I do wish you a very Happy GBBD!

    • annamadeit says:

      Thanks, Jenni! Can you believe it? Got it for Christmas, and I was just jumping up and down with joy… So exciting! I just love those blurry backgrounds! 😀

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