Friday, 16 January 2015

Garden Bloggers Bloom Day January 2015

Brrrrrr!  It's chilly out there!  Thankfully my garden isn't very big and I don't need to wrap up as if I'm going on some exhibition to the North Pole to pop out and see what's blooming this month.  Not that there's a lot too see anyway.  Looking back at other January posts and old pictures, I think this January is a little disappointing bloom wise but weather wise that I'd probably describe this winter as  a normal winter here in Edinburgh.  With the last few winters being somewhat out of the ordinary, it's a nice change.  We've had just the right amount of everything so far.  This of course is based on no scientific data whatsoever, just my observations.      

As I look around the borders, bulbs are bursting through the soil everywhere.  The bulbs are now spreading themselves around the garden.  I see the odd Crocus popping up in spots I hadn't planted them.   This I think is a side affect of me moving plants around the garden and taking with them bulbs in the surrounding soil.  Most though are a month or so away from flowering.  However, there is one wee sign of spring this bloom day.  Some Crocus are racing on ahead  - this little clump of Crocus chrysanthus are in a sunny wee spot, one of the few wee spots that gets some direct sun in winter.  I thought these Crocus were early this year but checking back they were at a similar stage in the previous Januarys I have on record.  



The January winds have been relentless this last week, again nothing out of the ordinary for this time of the year.  Thankfully little or no damage in my garden.  I do see damage to a few fences in the neighbourhood and a couple of the greenhouses I can see from my upstairs windows have all suffered.  It's at this time of the year I get kind of pleased I don't have a greenhouse. 

The 'Special' snowdrops are all up too, but are a wee bit away from flowering.  The first flower of Galanthus Mrs Macnamara began flowering back in November and it's second flower is out in time for this month's post. 

Galanthus elwesii Mrs Macnamara
There are not many shrubs that flower in winter and those that do are really welcome.  Both the Hamamelis and Mahonia have been blooming since November.  Hamamelis x intermedia Jelena has flowered sparsely but is really now coming into her own.  Is there any other plant with such fascinating blooms?  They are hard to beat.

Hamamelis x intermedia Jelena
I won't bore you with more photos of the Mahonia, besides the winds are making it rather difficult to get a good picture.  One of my New Years Resolutions for the garden was to get a grip with my plant list and yet the first plant I have to look up for confirmation of it's name I find I haven't recorded, nor can I find the label.  It's not like me to forget, I usually have some kind of take on the name in my head but this one, my mind is blank!  Does anyone know how to tell the difference between S. confusa and S. hookeriana?  I can remember it had a scent when I bought it but I can no longer smell it.  Final size does not help me either as it's still relatively small and has only been in the garden 2 years.

Sarcococca
One group of plants that rarely let us down at this time of the year are the Hellebores.  Some of my favourites are from the H. x ericsmithii hybrid collection.  I promised myself a new one this year if I was given vouchers for Christmas.   I did just that but the one I bought is not blooming right now, however one of it's relatives is just coming to bloom.  A lonely bloom amongst a mass of buds on H. x ericsmithii Pirouette which was new to the garden last year.     

Helleborus x ericsmithii Pirouette
Whilst there are slim pickings from my garden this January, it is full of February Promise!  Meantime please join me and other garden bloggers at May Dream Gardens to see what's going on in their wee corners of the globe.

39 comments:

  1. Yes, there's lots of February promise in my garden too! Bulbs nosing their way above the soil, and shrubs like Sarcococca putting out buds. I don't have any open Hellebores yet, but they are on their way. Happy GBBD! Thanks for sharing your flowers.

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    1. Glad to read your garden is heading it's way towards spring Alison - it's ever so uplifting to see isn't it!

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  2. I do love witch hazels. They are one of the plants I could not be without I think. And hellebores.

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    1. Witch hazels are a plant I came too rather late Jessica. I began coveting them when I first started blogging. Of course, it was only a matter of time before I got one for the garden.

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  3. Hi Angie, the difference between S. confusa and S. hookeriana is easy to see on the leaves, confusa has glossy leaves, hookeriana has not, so your photo is probably of a confusa. (S. ruscifolia is somewhere in between). If you look at my GBBD post you will see examples of both although my confusa photo on the latest post is not so good for seeing the leaves.

    Your H. x ericsmithii Pirouette is lovely, I have an ericsmithii too but I’m not sure I like its colours, they are rather dirty and washed out both in bud and fully open.
    It’s chilly down here too, but hasn’t dipped below freezing more than twice so far - but the wind has been relentless! Stroll on warmer, sunnier days :-)

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    1. I saw both your Sarcococca and did pick up the difference between them. Thanks with help on the ID.
      Sorry you don't like the flowers on the ericsmithii hellebores, personally I don't mind them.
      Yes, roll on summer!

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  4. I love your hellebore! Interesting that your crocus buds appear with the foliage - mine have foliage but no evidence of the flowers as yet. Maybe they're a different species or maybe I won't get crocus flowers this year - they're not reliable bloomers here. Happy GBBD!

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    1. I have some Crocus that also only have foliage at the moment - I think you might be right about different species. I'm guessing the drought affects the Crocus too then!

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  5. Lovely to see the little crocus buds out in your garden. They are so cheerful when there's not much else out. Witch hazels are amongst my favourites too- I'm hoping to add to my existing collection of one later thus month. I'm glad your Edinburgh winter is being just normal thus year. You've certainly had some tough ones recently

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    1. Do you have a specific of Hamamelis in mind or will you wait to see what's available? I was at the GC today and was most surprised there were none on display. Good luck with sourcing your plant.

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  6. Hi Angie,

    Your crocus are way early, I hope you avoid the snow and they don't get damaged!
    So far here there's little to no sign of crocus emerging, neither have any iris but most other bulbs are beginning to show.

    I really want some witch hazel; hopefully in the future some time.

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    1. It's nice to see those bulbs emerge isn't it Liz? I hope your Iris appear soon, if for nothing else just to know they are there. I find they are not reliable here. You'll get a witch hazel when the time is right, what's for you won't go past you, as they say.

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  7. No Crocus buds here today just snow!

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    1. A little bit of snow is a lovely thing Brian - I hope you are enjoying it.

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  8. Maybe once the wind dies down you will detect perfume. It is mazing just how memory planys tribks whuch is where lots if photos help to put things straight.

    I too have little patches of garden with their own specific growing condition. One hellebore has its own patch of sunlight which shines on it (when the sun deigns to shine) like a spotlight. As a result it flowers ahead of its neighbours.

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    1. You know Sue - I was out there today, it was calm and sunny yet no scent from the Hamamelis :(
      It fascinates me that some plants growing just a few inches apart can behave quite differently - I find the snow drops in my garden flower weeks apart due to the sunlight they receive.

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  9. Wow. No crocuses showing in West Yorkshire but you can see what our garden club members have in their gardens.
    http://gardenersfridayforum.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. No crocus showing in W. Yorkshire yet....I would have expected them be much further ahead than here in Edinburgh.

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  10. Jelena is an excellent witch hazel. I love the coppery color and abundant blooms.

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    1. Me too Marian. I'm glad I chose this variety.

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  11. Jelena is a delight and I love Helleborus 'Pirouette' - what a cute name and the foliage is as pretty as the flowers...almost that is ;), keep warm, Angie

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    1. Thanks Annette. I was in the GC today and came across some Hellebores that were just the wrong colour of pink!! The wrong colour of pink for this time of the year that is. For once I was not tempted by their massive dispaly.

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  12. Great to see the crocuses or should that be crocii croaking Angie. I noticed a couple out here today in a pot and near to the house wall, obviously enjoying a hot spot. A beautiful photo of 'Jelena'. Helene is quite right about the differences in the sarcococca foliage. The leaves of 'hookeriana' are also narrower and slightly yellow in tone. I sometimes have to put my nose almost in the flower of 'confusa' to detect perfume. It may be dependent on the temperature or on the direction of the wind as Sue suggests.

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    1. It sure is great to see them Anna. Thanks too for the comments re the Sarcococca - I will update my list now with the correct name. I might snip of a wee bit stem with some flowers and bring it in the house as an experiment. I had read that some plants need warmth before their scent comes out.

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  13. Dear Angie, there might be only slim pickings in terms of blooms in your garden right now, but what is blooming looks absolutely fabulous! The hamamelis x intermedia 'Jelena' is one of the most gorgeous ones that I have seen on the net so far and the coloration of helleborus x ericsmithii 'Pirouette' is to die for. Looking already forward to your next GBBD when all the bulbs are flowering in your lovely garden! Warm regards,
    Christina

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    1. Thanks Christina. I agree re Jelena. She is a beauty isn't she? I look forward to sharing my February blooms with you too :)

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  14. This constant wind has been awful, I have damage to my greenhouse too. You have such lovely things in bloom. I love Crocus tricolor. Such a little treasure. I have species crocus in bloom too. They look so delicate. I love your H. Pirouette too.

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    1. It's nice to see those Crocus blooms isn't it Chloris. I hope the damage to your greenhouse isn't too major and easily fixed.

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  15. look at you Angie, with your crocuses nearly out ! Mine are miles away ... as it just about everything else I think!
    Your hamamelis looks wonderful, I must bite the financial bullet and buy one...

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    1. I'm sure your Crocus won't be too far away Jane. Although I've just seen the forecast for the coming week - it's too be cold!! I'm sure your garden will love you if you buy it a new Hamamelis ;0)

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  16. I love your little crocus buds, they are much further on that any of mine. The winds have been awful haven't they, but today was wonderful, calm and sunny, even on the coast. Another really cold night though. It will be nice when the temperatures warm up a bit.

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    1. Gorgeous here today too Annette but you are of course right, more cold on the way - just seen the forecast it's chilly all week!
      I hope your Crocus aren't too far away.

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  17. Overhere no crocus to see yet. You have a lot of flowers in your garden at this time of the year. Overhere the helleboruses are showing theire buds but no flower opened yet.
    Have a wonderful sunday Angie.

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    1. Thanks Marijke - I hope signs of spring don't stay away too long in your garden.

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  18. Slim pickings?! No, you have blooms! I have nothing! (Well, I have many evergreen plants, and dried seedheads, and buds, but certainly no blooms!) So, wow, I consider you lucky to have anything blooming in January. Your hellebores are gorgeous! Mine have buds under the mulch, but they won't bloom until at least March. Happy belated GBBD!

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    1. Beth, I've just read your latest post and you have Snow! I love a good covering of snow. I'd gladly swap for a day or 4 :)

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  19. Angie I think you have quite a lot in bloom for the time of year and as you say you have a small garden, I do not like pink much but your hellebore is a lovely purple pink, and I like the burnt orange of your hamamellis, Frances

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  20. I'm surprised that spring comes so early to Scotland! I thought you lived in a land of long, dark winters - like the Swedes.

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  21. Your unscientific method sounds familiar. I have a calendar that I love. It is from way back in 2013, but has plenty of white space. I am determined to enter bloom times, things I have planted and weather conditions. If I use a different color ink each year, it should do me for two or three...easy to say in January. Wouldn't it be fun, though, to be able to look back with some real data recorded?

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