“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” Marcel Proust
The views of my garden from early December to the end of December are very different. Our fall was most unusual ending with an almost mild December. I am most grateful for such a wonderfully long fall this year. I have a feeling our seasons will be more normal this year as winter is already proving to be. But then again the forecast this week is for temps in the 40s and rain so maybe we will get an early January thaw. It is always a surprise!
As I recap what has been happening in December, I am joining some other gardener’s memes with this journal post: Garden Bloggers Harvest Day (GBHD)@The Gardening Blog on the 5th, Best and Worst of My Garden@Bumble Lush, Salad Days@Veg Plotting on the 4th Friday of the month and End of Month View with Helen@The Patient Gardener’s Weblog.
The full moon in late December is often called the Full Cold Moon or the Long Nights Moon as winter turns into its full force and boy did it. The day after the solstice brought a 2 day storm that left one foot of snow, lots of strong winds and much colder weather. So yes we had a White Christmas. That same week, the day after Christmas, brought an even bigger storm with 2 more feet of snow. It snows an inch at least a day with some days bringing 3 to 6 inches. By the end of December we had 4 feet of snow with a forecast of frigid temps in January. Below zero temps already in early January means we may in for a cold winter with normal snowfall totals of at least 100 inches of the white stuff.
The only clear night in late December was right before the full moon on Christmas night (that’s the moon pictured right). The almost full moon shone high in the western sky by 2am. It’s light made the snow shine with long shadows of trees like long sticks across the snow. The light hit the icy pond making me think the sun was rising in the west. I wish I could have captured the beauty of that moonlit night in my snow covered garden. It was a treat for the soul.
So what is growing. Well outside under the snow I am sure there is lots growing. Once we eventually get a thaw, I am sure to see bulbs starting to emerge as well as some perennials putting on new growth. But that will have to wait. I thought I would show you some winter shots of the garden as they looked at the end of December. Many of these shots are from inside the house as I was sick at the end of December. Seems I had the flu, followed by travel for work, followed by illness for the holidays. Oh well at least I had time to rest.
Here are some views of the back gardens both before and after the snow.
How the left back garden looked for most of December.
This is after the first storm on December 22nd. The water in the background is the one rain garden that needs a bit of digging out and expanding. You can see critter tracks all over from squirrels, rabbits and deer. It is fun to see where they go in the garden.
As I am practicing more intentional gratitude, I can say I am very grateful for the herbs and seeds growing indoors.
You can see basil, rosemary, cilantro and parsley growing here in the basement. There is also oregano, lemon balm and sage growing downstairs with mint, thyme and chives growing upstairs under a grow light. I have been harvesting these herbs to use in cooking since I brought them in.
These are seeds I started in the basement on Christmas Day. You can see here arugula, lettuce and spinach growing within a couple of days of my planting the seeds. I am using organic potting soil in my smaller grow bag.
This Christmas cactus was given to me by my mother-in-law years ago. It blooms throughout the fall and winter, and was blooming at Christmas this year. I have several at work that others keep on my sunny windowsills It seems I am the plant rehab person in the office. I’ll be working on a sad orchid soon (I have no experience with orchids). I also have 2 Amaryllis growing at home, but they are just sprouting. I don’t plant them until the holidays so I have something blooming in later winter.
These are the greens I planted outside in late fall under a row cover in grow bags. They handled the first few inches of snow, but are now covered by many feet so I am leaving them insulated there. If we get a thaw, I will uncover them and the young carrots to see how they are doing. Perhaps I may have early spring lettuce and carrots this year.
This is how the pond looked for much of late fall until the snow came. There was a thin film of ice over it most mornings, and as pictured in the shot at the top of the post.
There is my meadow in the distance beyond the fence. Like the birdhouses, it is covered in snow the seeds awaiting the warmth of spring to fill it with gorgeous blooms.
A couple of visitors came by to say hello in December. Not much else visiting on except for birds oh and deer late at night or early in the morning. I am looking to put out some suet for the birds, but I will have to be careful as that sharpie hawk is looking for a feeding station of his own with lots of juicy birds. I received a new camera for Christmas from the hubby (a big surprise) so I hope to learn to use it soon to get sharper images of critters from farther away. (Run your cursor over the image to get a description these birds)
Garden’s Eye Verse
This months poem is a continuation of my Christmas Eve post, Giving. I hope you enjoy it.
Be like a ripple in the water
gathering as a wave,
moving about the earth
nourishing everything you pass.
“Grow Your Blog” Party
I have decided to participate in this wonderful event to meet new bloggers from around the world. The 250 bloggers signed up so far are from a variety of different types of blogs. I love finding new blogs and welcome new readers as well.
As part of the blog post you are encouraged to do a giveaway. I have many wonderful garden books that I have decided to part with. Some new, some gently/barely used and some a little more lovingly used. So I have decided to give away away 10 garden books. Look for the post and giveaway on January 19th. The winners will be announced at the end of January/beginning of February. It will be open to all readers.
If you want to grow your readership, or meet some new bloggers I invite you to join Vicki@2 Bags Full for this blog party. You can check out the details here.
Next up on the blog: Monday will be a tale of the blooms that never showed up last year. This month I will continue with another Garden Book Review, and a new Simply the Best series while adding some Wildflower Tales. I have that a special post coming on the evening of the 18th about the Blog Party and Giveaway. I hope you will join me.
I will be linking in with Michelle@Rambling Woods for her Nature Notes meme. It is a great way to see what is happening in nature around the world every Wednesday.
As always, I’ll be joining Tootsie Time’s Fertilizer Friday.
I hope you will join me for my posts once a month at Beautiful Wildlife Garden. See my current post now.
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