in search of the gardening grove

in search of the gardening grove

I’m having trouble keeping track of what’s what. There was the holiday blur, with odd hours and events, vacation days, a couple December birthdays–or maybe a dozen–I can’t really remember. And then we had the situation with weather. So extra bodies around the house, some “working from home.” I always work from home, usually with plenty O’solitude. I didn’t get much done.

There is rumor of more inclement weather headed our way, though I’m hoping it’s a ploy to get us tuned back in to local news. After all, the lines-at-the-airport and post office stories are wrung dry.

So, I’m contemplating how to recover my gardening groove, or at least a garden-planning groove, but challenged. I’ve been digging out books and magazine, trying to hook something that will ignite a spark. Slow going.

Gardening books might do the trick.

Gardening books might do the trick.

Also, what about gardening after it’s been weathering heavily? How long must one to wait to know what survived? For instance, when it has looked like this for over a week, what happens? Does snow really insulate the plants–or are frigid temperatures before and after a mitigating factor? I know, light-weight by many people’s standards, but big around these parts, and I have no idea. How do you plan around this?

Which plants can survive under all this?

Which plants can survive under all this?

I can report that the Rhodocoma capensis seems to have pulled through with aplomb. It’s one of those mounds in the photo above, somewhere on the right. I lost track of what was where. Is that common in snowy climes, or just my ADD kicking in?

Rhodocoma capensis popped right back up.

Rhodocoma capensis popped right back up.

The jury is still out on the Fatsia japonica to the rear. It’s standing partially upright again, but looking quite the Dr. Seuss character.

The Black Mondo Grass is looking terrific. (Pay no attention to the mess all around.) I transplanted a wee start from the big patch out front, and it grew this much when I wasn’t looking. I’m going to divide more from the front garden this year: I swear.

Ophiopogon planiscapus 'Nigrescens' looking good.

Ophiopogon planiscapus ‘Nigrescens’ looking good. Black Mondo Grass makes me happy.

I feel like I should be more motivated, but of course, I don’t know who I’m trying to kid. Maybe I’ll start claiming my style is plant-driven, wherein when the opportunity is rife, I’ll be driven to buy plants–and subsequently driven to figure out where to put them. Plant driven design, right? I’ve seen a couple of the big spring sales advertised recently, and that caused at least a mild buzzing.

Tissue alert here: I’d be remiss before leaving in not mentioning that we lost our beloved Chow Chow–a few days before Christmas. Pumpkin was almost 13, and was always a fabulously healthy dog–until suddenly she was not. So in addition to uncertainty about what will survive after our snow and frigid temperatures, I’m discovering how much of my gardening revolved around Pumpkin and her habits. We loved that pup, and we’re so grateful for her time with our family. Such a good girl.

Sweet Pumpkin

Sweet Pumpkin

Sigh.

In future posts, I shall make every effort to showcase more inspiring plant offerings, and I so appreciate your allowing me to get this out of my system. Here at Flamingo Park, I’ll be curled up with books and winter comfort food, anxiously awaiting signs of spring–and your wise comments. We are all in this together, right?

Winter salad with roasted veggies and horseradish sauce.

Winter salad with roasted veggies and horseradish sauce.

Cheers

 

  • Loree

    That photo of the snow in your garden was so undisturbed. Made me teary-eyed thinking of Pumpkin.

    Re: the working from home productivity cut when you’re not the only one working from home…YES! I am so glad to have the quite back. Which of course brings me to your stated weather rumor. I have not heard this one. Pray tell what you know.

    • I was so happy to have undisturbed snow. When I was a kid, there were always the neighbors who’d run thru our yard & leave theirs pristine. Apparently I haven’t gotten over it. But at least with a fenced yard, I don’t have to be out there shaking my fist, “stay off my snow!”

      Oh and weather, just general, it’s not over yet. And they were saying maybe next week, a few forecast ago, but now seems dry and cold temps. I should pay better attention. I’m getting gun shy about going near the TV for fear of learning about some new horrible turn of events.

    • Didn’t mean to cause alarm on the weather front. It’s just I’ve given up hoping anything will survive–then whatever does will be a happy surprise.

  • Ricki Grady

    I’m sorry. Pumpkin was such a gem. We lost our cat, Sami, to old age (she was 17) while snowbound, so we got to lavish lots of loving attention during her final days. Our darlings leave big holes in our hearts when they go, don’t they?

    • Loree

      So sorry to hear about Sami!

      • Ricki Grady

        Thanks…I know you understand.

    • Oh Ricki, I’m sorry about your kitty. They make us love them so much. Thanks.

  • Tim Vojt

    Sorry to hear about your pet loss. It’s always hard having a warm-body-shaped hole in your home. 🙁
    Things look good, but there are always garden surprises come spring: good and bad.
    You’ll hit your stride and get you inspiration in time. I’m thinking more and more about winter interest in the garden, which is much harder in my climate than yours. I’m excited watching the early stirrings of my first Hammamelis; Jelena.
    But there are always new obsessions for me, too. Can you say ‘Arisaema’?

    • I’m ready to jump on the Witch Hazel bandwagon. Rethinking the space & light conditions post winter. And in theory, I want to grow Arisaema, but I’ve killed a few, and it’s made me gun shy. This morning I was reading about what to do in February, and it mentioned bulbs that can be planted now–for those of us who slacked during the fall opportunity. I’ve going around thinking I don’t like things that sprout from bulbs, but that is just dumb.

      Thanks for the condolences. It’s hard to believe Pumpkin isn’t with us. I still think I see her out of the corner my eye, or hear her, or worry about stepping on her when I get out of bed in the morning. But because we loved that pooch so much, it’s easy to know we’ll get another dog. So many good dogs out there needing homes.