Monday, 15 February 2010

GBBD... Congrats Carol!

Today Garden Blogger’s Bloom Day celebrates not only the flowering plants in many, many gardens across the Blogisphere but it also its 3rd Blogiversary! I’d like to send warm Congratulations to Carol over at May Dreams Gardens who came up with this idea and has continued to generously host it every month.

Just a little something for you, Carol and all the other bloggers who take part…

You can make a wish if you want. I wonder what ‘garden’ wish for 2010 you would make if you did. Please do leave a comment below. This could be fun to see what everyone would choose. ‘No snow’ and warmer temps is already a given :-)

What is GBBD? Well, basically Carol asks:
“What’s blooming in your garden? We would love to have you join in for Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. It’s easy to participate and all are invited!

"Just post on your blog about what is blooming in your garden on the 15th of the month and put your name and the url to your post on the Mr. Linky widget below.”
That would be on Carol’s posting for the month. “Then leave a comment to tell us what you have waiting for us to see so we can pay you a virtual visit!”

Carol goes on to say:
“If you are new to garden blogging or just started seeing the bloom day posts and wondered how to join in, it’s easy. You just do the above. No asking permission, no rules, no hassles. Botanical names are strictly optional. And in the winter-time, even blooms are optional!”

Most months I have participated… although on quite a few occasions a few days late! I have always enjoyed taking part and have e-met many bloggers through GBBD. Having a regular date for posting images from the garden are a great comparison record between the years too. If you'd like to take part this month head over to Carol's posting to leave your link and enjoy garden hopping.

The montage below does not represent the flowers in my garden this February. This is an image I posted for February 2009. Yep… the crocuses were flowering nicely…



February 2010, and the picture is quite different…

Remember clicking on all photos will enlarge them.


The Drumstick Primulas on the other hand look pretty much as they were in the montage. They just need a little tidy up around them.



Last February, I had a few young hellebore plants that I hoped would flower. None flowered then but this year we have a few flower buds almost ready to open…



Wandering around the garden in search of flowers this morning and the Heuchera Liquorish caught my eye. Oops… I know its not flowering, but in the absence of flowers (and even when the garden is full of them) this plant at my front door always catches my eye.



Oh… just a thought for any new bloggers that enjoy foliage plants too. Pam at Digging is now hosting Foliage Follow-Up postings to GBBD on the 16th of the month.

Foliage again, I know, but this sedum gives such wonderful jewel like colour in the garden during the winter months…



Jewel-like is a great description too… when the close-up pans out to the reality photo. Yep the pot is tilted after we were busy above it over the weekend making an adjustment to a bird box. Fallen ivy from the trimming in this area awaits collection too.



LOL… for GBBD we can carefully edit our blooms! I keep meaning to photograph a group of five plants but always get caught up with the close-ups when I go out with my camera :-D

Oh… now here’s another thought for new bloggers. Helen over at the patient gardener’s weblog is hosting postings at the end of the month. She is suggesting more garden progress photos.

Helen is picking four viewpoints in her garden to make her month by month comparisons. I never thought of that for my first posting but will consider a few areas for next time. Yep… this one is reality gardening! I like that idea :-D

To continue in the area of reality gardening this winter will have taken its toll on many garden plants. In my garden the Gunnera below was given it usual winter protection of layers of hay and leaves but only time will tell if it has survived.



It looks like perhaps I’ve lost my established clump of Rosemary that came from cuttings. Aw…



My bigger area of Sage (also from cuttings) has been hit too. This usually takes some winter damage. I generally prune it fairly hard and it comes back again. Tempted as I am to get the pruners out now I’ll hold fire for just a little longer.



Choisya Ternata always gets a few stems with some winter die back in my garden. Once again, I just get the pruners out and as a result of these Spring prunings this plant has become more dense in its beautifully scented glossy foliage.



Now isn’t this a very sorry sight below? This is the state all my front garden ‘Etna’ Penstemons are in...



Once again these now well established plants were taken from cuttings. I really couldn’t make a guess if a severe pruning will save these plants but I’ll not rush to cut them down yet. Fingers crossed, it will save them as they will be a great loss to my front garden :-(

Evergreen ferns are a bonus over the winter months and I have a few now. They do suffer some winter damage, but I have to say I don’t mind seeing the blotches on them. I actually think they are quite pretty. The bonus in pruning these leaves are the wonderful new fronds that replace them.



Below we have yet another story. What’s going on here? Usually the birds feast on the berries on my small pendulus Cotoneaster tree. Usually they are gone within a day!



However, I’m sure I heard in a television programme before Christmas that if berries were left on a tree a hard winter could be expected. Well, these berries were left and unfortunately for the birds the winter claimed them before they could.

You have to wonder then that the birds had a sense of what weather was to come before we did. Perhaps they were saving theses berries for lean times of food. Good job then, I continued to feed them sultanas and lots of other goodies :-)

Okay… this is Bloom Day so let’s end with a couple of goodies. The biggest goodie of all has to be (sorry you must be fed up of me saying this) the perennial wallflower Bowles’ Mauve…



I have three plants in a group at my front door. It looks like one has been hit a little by the cold temps but as you can see above… this plant is still trying to flower!!

Okay… onwards now to the flower of the month in my garden…



Okay, this is a very new arrival… only planted at the weekend! Edelweiss is the variety. I wanted to add to the other two very small clumps of snowdrops in this area so I could look out to them from my windows. Honestly they weren’t added to give me a flower for GBBD!

However, to me anyway, this flower is just a bonus to the prettiest picture of all in the garden at the moment. Can you guess what I’m thinking about?

No? Ah… it’s the beauty that is newly hoed soil. Is that not just the best sight of all for a gardener at this time of year? It makes you just want to get out there and garden :-D

Wishing everyone a very Happy GBBD!!


All photos above with the exception of the montage and cake were taken in my garden on February 15th 2010.

23 comments:

shirl said...

Hello everyone, Happy GBBD :-D

My garden wish for 2010 would be that I complete my new pond build and frogs and other wildlife find their way to it :-D

Kathleen Scott said...

Every year is different, isn't it? Nice that you have the lovely montage from last year as well as the hope for this (later) spring.

We're just starting spring here in the Texas Hill Country. It will be a good one this year, with enough rain to carpet the land with wildflowers.

Jan (Thanks For Today) said...

Good evening, Shirl, I think this winter is definitely one for the books everywhere! You do have quite a lot of nice plants beginning to bloom! None here...everything is under several feet of snow so I can't tell what's happening with anything, even if there are buds beginning to form. Love your snowdrops, of course! Can you believe I 'still' have not planted any? One year I'll get to it...You'll have to remind me next year in advance, so I don't forget! Happy Bloom Day;-) Jan

sweet bay said...

I have too many garden wishes to relate here, but foremost I want my bearded iris to bloom as they did 2 years ago.

Only 2 more weeks until March! Surely we will be seeing some real signs of spring by then.

Caroline said...

Your frostbitten garden looks a lot like mine in Texas. I love your little sedum. Happy GBBD!

Gail said...

Shirl, Last year was different and it was much more similar to the year before then this year! This has been a brutal winter~~I've lost my rosemary, too. It was 15 years old and I had put it in the ground in 2008. It was just too big to drag in aside when it got too cold.

What's my garden wish~That I get Priscilla safely moved to her new country home so she doesn't eat all my emerging flower buds! I hope you have a wonderful week...gail

shirl said...

Hi there Kathleen, it certainly is. LOL… I thought I’d pull that photo for those longing for Spring colour :-D

Couldn’t believe my eyes seeing your posting for GBBD! I didn’t know how much warmer it must be with you in Texas. Painted ladies on Rosemary… a sight for sore eyes on a (at the moment) frosty morning. Your photos did make me smile… and the thought of a wildflower carpet! Thanks for stopping by :-D

shirl said...

Good morning, Jan Yes, it is isn’t it? Ah… the blooms are thin on the ground at the moment but the real excitement is seeing the perennial plants begin to stir don’t you think?

Ah yes… that snow blanket. I guess it is saving your plants from the cold temps though. Hope they all survive. LOL… I’ll try to remind myself to remind you about planting snowdrops ;-)

Wait a minute… Jan it's really easy! The best time to plant snowdrops is actually in the green. My suggestion right now is to start sourcing out suppliers of snowdrops 'in the green' and place yourself an order. You’ll then be sorted and have them planted for next year. That’s the way to do it :-D

Oh yes… nearly forgot… Happy Bloom Day to you too :-D

shirl said...

Hi there, sweet bay LOL… I guess I was going for the first one that came to my head so it was easy… that and the fact that I’ll be tripping over stones and looking at a mud pile all year if I don’t get this pond sorted ;-)

Ah… that sounds like a good wish to me. I’m no expert at all with irises. It’s been a long time since I’ve had one. Do irises not need lifted and divided every few years to refresh the clump and keep flowers going. Once lifted and divided (pulled apart) I remember trimming the foliage down to 6ins or so and replanting with the corms sitting high enough to catch the sun to bake them so you get flowers. Just a thought if you have an established clump. Can't remember if irises will flower the same year they are divided though. Others may know :-D

Two weeks to March… gosh I guess this month is marching on then ;-)

shirl said...

Hello Caroline , I was thinking your garden would be quite a bit warmer than mine at the moment. No frost here yesterday but its back again today.

That sedum I should really divide and plant where I can see it from a window just for this time of year. It loses its deep red colour during the rest of the year.

Thanks for stopping by, wishing you a Happy GBBD :-D

shirl said...

Hi again Gail , yes I agree this year has been brutal. Aw… sorry to hear you’ve lost your Rosemary too. Oh… I see yours was in a pot before. An old friend then ;-)

Mine has always been in the ground but I won’t pull it out quite yet. I’ll give it a last chance with a severe pruning. You never know, it may come back. At 15yrs, I wouldn’t like to guess at yours.

Ah Priscilla… I see you are tempting her to go into a cage. I’m certain she’ll enjoy country life very nicely leaving your buds to do nicely too :-D

Thank-you, wishing you a great week too :-D

patientgardener said...

Hi Shirl - thanks for the reminder re the end of month view.
I was sad and surprised to see that your rosemary hasnt survived. It is amazing what plants will stand up to the prolonged cold and what dont

Rosie (Leaves n Bloom) said...

Hello Shirl - it was lovely for you to visit my place thankyou. My wish is to make my garden more nature friendly and to encourage more birds into it.

You asked me if I lived somewhere sheltered - in some respects we are but its a frost pocket. The tete a tete daffodils and primroses I buy in each year for the containers and I try to buy the hardier types of primrose - only the primrose emily plants are starting to flower in the garden. The witchhazels seem to like the location but my bowles mauve is looking dreadful just now. It will be the weekend before the snowdrops start to flower and not a sign of a crocus yet.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

You can at least see your garden. Mine is still buried under 4inches of snow. UGH...

This summer I want to make another sitting area in the garden where we can have a round fire pit. Nothing fancy. We will see what happens.

A wildlife gardener said...

Quite a change from this time last year as you say...

...and I have lost the Rosemary I was growing in a pot, thinking it would be safer...but, no!

Enjoyed the videos of the treecreeper :)

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Shirl, This was a nice tribute to Carol. :-) While I believe everyone is looking forward to Spring... I'm yet hoping to finish a couple of Winter projects first. ha!

caroline said...

Hi mum, my main garden wish for 2010 would be no more snow!! grrr there was so much today that everyone got sent home from uni early and all the buses werent running. anyway enjoyed reading your post :)xx

shirl said...

Hello caroline, this was a surprise comment. Lol… would I not be correct in guessing that you’d want no more snow outside the garden too!

Ah… the winter of ‘smiler’ snowman won’t be forgotten ;-) Wishing you some sunshine and warmer temps to melt away your snow. Have a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Helen, you’re most welcome! It will be an interesting/fun one to follow :-D

Yes, my Rosemary (3 good sized plants) is looking even worse now! Sorry to hear about yours too. Yes, it is very interesting to see the full definition of ‘hardy’ plants here in the UK.

Sorry to hear you’ve had more snow and didn’t get out on your snowdrop visit on Friday :-(

shirl said...

Hi again Rosie, you’re most welcome. It was good to catch up. BTW enjoyed your posting on City Mills… we had our wedding reception there :-D

Good wishes there, that’s my wish for my new larger pond too.

Ah… yes, I do remember you mentioning you were in a frost pocket there. I had wondered if that was perhaps what you’d done with the containers in your photos. They are looking good.

Sorry to hear about you wallflower, I really can’t believe that the first year I try this one out gets the worst prolonged low winter temps in years! I really cannot believe that, for the moment, two out of my three plants seem okay (the third has taken a little damage).

Hope you are getting the sunshine and blue skies we are having today. Must check my crocus maybe I’ve a few buds that the sun will bring out today :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Lisa, yes we still can. Hope your snow is considering leaving your garden. Wishing you some sunshine to melt it :-)

Oh… like the sound of your project for this year :-D

shirl said...

Hi again Wildlife gardener, yes it is. Aw… another Rosemary gone. Glad you caught a video on your visit here. That’s an amazing number of pigeons on your video :-D

Have a great week!

shirl said...

Hi there Shady, thank-you! Carol’s GBBD has brought so many bloggers together over the last 3 years. I do believe that is where we first ‘met’ ;-)

Yep… I with you on the winter jobs too. We don’t normally have such a prolonged cold spell. I’ve missed many gardening opps this winter.

I see you have interesting plans in your recent posting :-D