It’s proper January! Cold nights, frosty mornings, a little snow, visibly lengthening days, and best of all, new shoots pushing through everywhere. Having said that there is every chance those little shoots will be buried under snow in the next few days, but hey, I know they are there.
I spent a couple of therapeutic hours gardening yesterday. The dusting of snow had melted and in the sun and shelter from the wind it was pleasant enough, although the cold chilled my Wellington clad feet. I am preparing a bed beside the front door to fill with fragrant flowers , and I wanted to start cutting back the fallen plant stems in the Long Border.
It sounds rather grand, “the Long Border” but it is about 30 metres long, so I think the name is justified. The biggest task was removing the leaf litter of needles fallen from the 2 Corsican pines before they shade out some of the smaller plants. I don’t really know what to do with the needles. I guess they will take an age to compost.
Several small heucheras emerged from under the needle litter, “Peach Glow”, the label said and the low sun seemed to be illuminating it in that colour. The previous owners were fond of heucheras and there are several named and more unamed varieties. This is another plant I will have to learn to love. At the moment they belong in my “take it or leave it” group, but perhaps I may become a convert.
After a couple of hours labouring I took the camera for a walk. The new growth on some of the trees is lovely. New cones are forming on the evergreens and the willow, variety unknown, is pushing out furry catkins with pink hearts.
The hellebore buds have unfurled, revealing a dark purple flower with yellow anthers. I had to lie the camera on the ground and point hopefully to get the shot. Hellebores really need to be grown where they can be inspected.