Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day & Foliage Follow-Up January 2014: A Closer Look

January Garden Bitter Freeze
At this time of year when there is a stillness in the air and temperatures colder than I care to encounter, it is time to gaze into the garden for a closer focus on the details that may normally be overlooked.   The winter is a time to concentrate on the inner beauty of the landscape...the part of the garden that is sometimes hidden from view.  
Snow Covered Barberry
With my increasing growing interest in garden writing and photography, I strive to capture a view that is a little different from the ordinary.  Over time I have found a new appreciation for the simplest aspects of nature, such as the snow covered barberry in the photo above...
Blue Atlas Cedar (Cedrus Atlantica)
or the branches of a Blue Atlas Cedar against the backdrop of a blue sky...
Acer palmatum Sangu Kaku (Coral Bark Maple) and Golden Oriental Spruce 'Skyland'
or the exposed coral red branches of a Japanese Maple against the yellow-green needles of a Golden Oriental Spruce.  I am trying to look at nature in a different light as some may say.
Acer palmatum Sangu Kaku (Coral Bark Maple) Branches up Close
It was good timing to have camera in hand in order to capture the branches of the Coral Bark Maple. The frigid temperatures have dramatically brought out the colors and they are more vivid than I have remembered for some time.
Backyard Side Garden (Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar, Gold Mop Cypress, Royal Burgundy Barberry, Euonymus 'Gold Spot', Arborvitae, Dwarf Butterfly Bush, Knock Out Roses and Heuchera 'Caramel')
Here is one wide shot view to show a little perspective in the garden.  This is the backyard perimeter garden in winter mode.  I wait in anticipation for the emergence of burgundy and medium green foliage, fragrant purple blooms, pink roses and caramel colored perennials once spring arrives. 
Hydrangea 'Tardivia' Winter
In an effort to get a little more creative with the lens I aimed upward into the sky when trying to capture this 'Tardivia' Hydrangea faded bloom.  While still working on the perfect focal distance, I was fortunate enough to have just the right amount of back lighting to provide some contrast. 
Weeping Japanese Trunk Maple Winter
Weeping Japanese Maple is a tree I really have grown to appreciate all year round.  It has reached a mature age of somewhere between twenty and thirty years and each winter the trunk becomes just a little more twisted and contorted in character.
Magnolia 'Royal Star'
Here the new buds of the Magnolia are growing larger and larger each month.  Spring is on the way slowly but surely.
Moss Covered Rock and Sweet Flag
Why am I taking a photograph of moss?  There was something about snow next to this moss covered rock with the yellow-green of the sedge that caught my eye.  Nature really does have a lot to offer and I try not to let it go unnoticed.
Nandina domestica (False or Heavenly Bamboo)
Here is my Nandina domestica.  I have had it for years and have grown to love its vibrant red berries in winter.  Sadly this is the last photograph I was able to take of it before it was moved today to work on the oil tank.  It will likely not make it through the winter so I will have to get a new one in the spring for both myself and the birds. That means I will have to work in the garden...it's a tough job but someone has to do it!
Nandina domestica (False or Heavenly Bamboo)
A piece of branch fell into the snow and gave me the idea for this photograph. I really do like this plant.
Rosemary in Herb Garden
Normally my Rosemary in the herb garden does not make it through the winter but I have actually had this particular one for three years now! It was planted during a year with a mild winter so it was able to harden off and develop into a miniature shrub.  This has been an exceptionally brutal winter so I am hoping it continues to thrive.
Garden Friends
Structure is so important is a garden and besides many evergreens in the garden I also like a little whimsy.  This garden statue is one of my favorites!
Juniperus 'Pro Nana' and Heuchera 'Caramel'
It is difficult finding blooms in the garden at this time of year so I rely on foliage and these Heuchera 'Caramel' never cease to amaze me with their striking foliage that lasts throughout most of the winter.   
 
That ends our walk around the January garden for now. The first month of 2014 came in like a lion with winter storm Hercules on January 2nd bringing a foot of snow and 16°F temperatures, followed by a warming trend with torrential rains and daily temperatures back into the 40's for now.  The garden is still changing in each month and I enjoy looking to find its inner beauty. 
 
Drop a note to let me know you've been here and I will be sure to visit you as well. Also please visit our hostesses Carol at May Dreams Gardens for January Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day and Pam at Digging for Foliage Follow Up. 
 
(This monthly garden diary can also be viewed on the new My Gardens page.)
 
 
As Always...Happy Gardening!
 
 
Author: Lee@A Guide To Northeastern Gardening, Copyright 2014. All rights reserved. 
  
 

24 comments:

  1. I enjoyed a winter walk round your garden. I love that Coral Bark Maple contrasted with the Picea. What a lovely shot of the Magnolia buds. I have never taken much notice of them before but they are lovely in their furry jackets. I must go and look at mine.
    Chloris

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    1. Thank you for visiting Chloris. The Coral Bark Maple is really starting to mature and the view of the bark gets better every winter. The Magnolia buds puff up as the winter goes along and the bigger they get is the closer to spring!

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  2. Thank you for the lovely walk in your garden. You made beautiful photos. The trunk of the Japanese maple is magnificent, the Coral Bark Maple shows a beautiful colour contrast and the Heuchera 'Caramel' is still so beautiful for the time of year.

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    1. Thank you for visiting! I am enjoying the Heuchera with its color even in winter and it really doesn't die back like the other varieties. I am enjoying your lovely blog and it is nice to see that you are getting ready for spring!

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  3. I enjoyed the tour of your garden. Beautiful Nandina berries, and I love the shape of the Weeping Japanese Maple. It has been really cold here in the south, too - down to 5F one night, but we are up to more normal temperatures now (lows about 30F, highs about 45F).
    I thought I might have to photograph moss to get a little color for Bloom Day, but I found a few buds to show.
    Happy Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!
    Lea
    (Mississippi)

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    1. Lea-your Spirea buds are such a welcomed sight! You are ahead of us in that respect. Happy Bloom Day!

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    2. I love the form of your Weeping Japanese Maple, that trunk is amazing. Structure in the garden is so important in winter, you have lots of strong forms to enjoy.

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    3. Thank you Christina. Structure is so important so I do have many evergreens and trees with different trunk shapes and bark so that there is something to look at in winter. Your gardens are looking much more in spring mode and I enjoyed visiting!

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  4. What an amazing tapestry of foliage you have, I have the coral bark maple but have never known the branches to be so colourful here, maybe it is your colder temperature. I'm so glad your cold spell has now gone and that you are having warmer weather now.

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    1. Thank you for visiting Pauline and for your nice words. It seems that the bark on the Coral Bark is so much more vibrant red after a cold snap so that is probably it. I enjoyed all your winter blooming shrubs and perennials. It is starting to look a lot like spring there!

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  5. I just noticed, the other day, how many buds are on our magnolia trees.
    They are my very favorite thing about spring, and it looks lke they just may be wonderful this year.

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    1. Hi Lisa. I hope it is going to be a good year. I think the cold temperatures we are having are really going to help in getting the gardens going for spring. When the 'Royal Star' flowers are abundant you can smell them all the way across the yard. :)

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  6. Hi Lee
    Lovely shots of great coloured evergreens, the coral maple branches and all the super foliage. Just goes to show you how gardens can look great despite blooms!

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    1. Thank you Astrid! I can't wait until all my perennials are blooming but thank goodness for the evergreens and foliage to get through the winter months. Spring is on the way!

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  7. Wow. That thermometer at 10 degrees. Makes me shiver just thinking at it. It's interesting about your Rosemary bush. I had a large one in my garden for many years until a cold winter brought it down. And for in my neck of the woods, cold is temps below 20. I'll keep my fingers crossed that yours makes it through this year's brutality.

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    1. This winter has been brutal with temperatures so up and down. Thanks for your good wishes on the Rosemary!

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  8. Beautiful winter photos and lots of promising things to come. Looking forward to seeing your magnolia in flower!

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    1. Hi Helene. Me too...the buds get a little bigger each week so there is hope for spring blooms. We still have to get through a couple more months and I am anxiously waiting!

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  9. Now I really MUST have one of those (star magnolia?). The buds put pussy willows to shame. Your attentiveness was well rewarded.

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    1. The Magnoila does put on a nice show. The Weeping Pussy Willow has nice buds as well just not as large. I will be posting some photos of those buds in the spring. Thanks for stopping by! :)

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  10. Your garden shows that there's still plenty to see in winter, even in a cold climate and even after a particularly brutal cold snap. I enjoyed all your photos. That first image of the Acer reminded me strongly of our berry-covered possumhaw hollies at this time of year.

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    1. Thanks for hosting Foliage Follow-Up Pam. Come to think of it the color of the Acer bark does somewhat resemble the color of the holly berries. Maybe that is why I enjoy it so much. Anything that adds bright color to the drap landscape at this time of year is a pleasure and I strive to get in as much color as possible. I hope the weather starts to change soon!

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  11. Your winter garden images are just lovely. You have a wonderful outlook and see the beauty around you! I enjoyed the tour! Have a happy week!

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Thank you for visiting. I love reading your comments and knowing you have been here, and will try to reciprocate on your blog. If you have any questions I will try my very best to answer them. As always...HAPPY GARDENING!

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