Welcome to another Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day and Foliage Follow-Up for the month of February. With one of the mildest winters on record here in the northeast, Hellebores are in full bloom and perennials are starting to show their presence. According to the words of Dali Lama, "Just one small positive thought in the morning can change your whole day." This quote is so true, as one of the first things I do each morning is gaze upon my garden, which brings me great joy. As winter winds down with promises of a not too distant spring, come along and see what my Long Island garden has to offer!
|Hellebore 'Shooting Star'|
The first stop is to view the glorious blooms of Hellebore 'Shooting Star'. This is one of the best garden investments I have made over the years, so that I could see blooms in winter, and this perennial gets the job done. When not flowering, the foliage stays evergreen on the northern side of the property, which is another plus.
|Evergreens and Hellebores!|
Here is a wider view the the Hellebores in front of a border of evergreens and flowering shrubs. There are three Hellebore plants in this location, supplying plenty of buds and blooms from January to March!
Along to the western side of the property, my frequent visitors will probably recall the story of how my husband surprised me with this irresistible garden statue last winter. I love seeing it right outside the back door each morning and its amazing how something so simple can make one smile!
During the winter months, bird visitors are always welcomed in the garden, and these House Sparrows love the Weeping Pussy Willow tree by the back patio. It is a favorite nesting place, especially in spring.
|Winter Berries on Nellie Stevens Holly|
As we move along to the back garden, Nellie Stevens Holly berries are nice and plump for the winter months and Dwarf Cryptomeria (Cryptomeria japonica 'Globosa Nana') shows its golden-bronzed winter foliage.
|Cryptomeria japonica 'Globosa Nana' |
In the foreground, this garden kitty has a special meaning. It was a gift from my mom many years ago and it brings back fond memories of her each time I pass it by.
This statue of Garden Gal has also been around for many years as she continues to delight visitors with her basket of Mondo Grass. Wanting to give a different perspective, this is the view from the northeastern side of the property. Euonymus 'Emerald Gaiety' is in the foreground and the large piece of moss rock was added last summer to add a little dimension to the garden.
|Blue Globe Spruce|
Being a huge fan of evergreens of different shapes and colors, one of my favorite additions is this Globe Blue Spruce, which displays its brilliant blue-green foliage all year round and grows to a compact 2-3 feet in height and width. Here is a close up view of its interesting needles.
|Weeping Japanese Maple|
Wintertime doesn't mean there can't be interest. This eight foot tall Weeping Japanese Maple displays its twisted trunk during the colder months when its foliage is absent.
|Signs of Spring to Come!|
In the southern exposure garden there are some early signs of spring as Sedum 'Brilliant' rosettes start to make their presence known...
|Hyacinth Buds in February!|
and the Hyancinths are emerging! As I had mentioned at the beginning of this post, this has been one of the mildest winters on record...with the exception of yesterday and today with temperatures not getting above freezing. Nonetheless, the spring bulbs are confused and quickly rising up out of the soil for their spring debut. But wait...it's way too early!
Once in a while the skies darken as a brief passing shower changes the lighting along the front walkway. The beauty of a virtual tour is that I get to share this with you, even though it happened a couple of days ago.
Along the front, Skylands Golden Oriental Spruce and Coral Bark Maple 'Sangu Kaku' continue to display their evergreen foliage and coral-red bark, which the colder temperatures make more prominent...and indoors the mature Jade plant produces a rare treat!
|Indoor Blooms on Jade Plant!|
This Jade plant is approximately thirty years old and produces white star-like blooms during the winter months when conditions are right. The secret: This plant is in a southwestern window in full sun. The lower nighttime temperatures in the room during winter combined with increasing hours of daylight in February triggers the blooms. The plant itself is 3.5 feet tall by 2.3 feet wide. I have propagated many plants from cuttings over the years. Propagation is simple...cut off a section of stem approximately 3-4 inches in length and allow it to cure for one to two days. Moisten the cut end and dip into rooting medium, place into a light soil mix and water. The new plant will root in approximately two to three weeks. I water my plants every two weeks, allowing the soil to dry out in between.
Author: Lee@A Guide to Northeastern Gardening,© Copyright 2010-2020. All rights reserved.