Hello again, and a very happy 2013 to all.
I do hope this year will be a bit of an improvement on last year’s – with eyepopping statistics just about to be announced, no doubt informing us – as if we needed the rubber stamp – that 2012 was indeed the wettest since records began. The evidence here is all around: the Levels are under water, and driving over the Salisbury Plains to my Mum’s house after Christmas was like driving through Waterworld.
Still, in the spirit of New things, I’ve got a shiny new blog to unveil today: I’ve been tinkering around a bit as I’d got a little jaded with Blogger, and a bit annoyed by the fact that my URL didn’t fit my blog’s title. It still doesn’t match but at least it’s now relevant and doesn’t secretly annoy the wonderful and admirable Wellywoman. So I made the well-worn trek across to WordPress and here I am.
(please don’t look at the rest of the website just yet: I am a baby where website building is concerned and Do Not Know What I Am Doing so it’s rather rubbish while I’m fiddling about figuring out the answers to various niggly little difficulties).
Anyway, to celebrate January 1st I thought I’d start a little annual challenge, based on a competition I used to enter (and come last in, every year) with the Surrey branch of Plant Heritage – an organisation worth undergoing ritual humiliation for every January if it raises a few pennies to save some long-lost garden cultivar from oblivion.
We had a little form to fill in, on which you listed every plant in flower on January 1st. Mine was a very, very short list: in fact I claimed the prize for the shortest list pretty much every year I was there. The best I heard about was a stoic 28: I can only sit back and admire in wonder at such wintery prowess.
So here’s your challenge. Since it’s now dark outside I won’t stick to Jan 1st, but during this week pop out and count how many flowers are out in your garden, and let us know about them. There is a virtual bunch of (winter and highly scented) flowers for the winner, plus a major allocation of smug points.
Here’s my list: just four, though beauties all. General verdict: could do better, I think. If I’m still here I’ll repeat the exercise this time next year (giving us all time to plant a few more January gems in the meantime).
Diana Studer said:
glad to see your new blog. I had you tucked in my – if she doesn’t post in January she’s out of my Reader – folder. I was awed by cyclamen in window boxes in Monaco. So lush and exotic to my eyes.
Diana Studer said:
PS since you are now on WP I can enjoy getting a ‘there’s a reply’ message?
Hello Diana and lovely to see you over here! **phew** had a narrow escape there – I know, I’ve been fiddling about with widgets instead of posting for such a long time now I’ve forgotten what blogging is all about. Sorry. Thank you for sticking with me 😀
From memory from walking around the garden earlier today: Cyclamen, Viburnum x bodnantense ‘Dawn’, Erysimum ‘Bowles mauve’, Primula ‘Cottage cream’ (in flower since last July), Galanthus nivalis (out since mid December), Lonicera x purpusii ‘Winter Beauty’, Sarcococca, a nondescript Viola of dubious parentage, hairy bittercress. The latter probably doesn’t count seeing I didn’t plant it 😉 Note to self: OK-ish, but must do better next year 🙂
Hello VP – nice to have you here too 😀 Glad everyone’s finding their way here OK.
I am very impressed by your list – especially that primula, that’s quite some flowering period. I have a list of 12 scented shrubs I plan to acquire this year for my perfume garden – and ‘Winter Beauty’ and Sarcococca are both on it.
So you’re the leader so far – anyone want to raise your nine?
I’ve found 2 types of Hellebore this morning to add to the list – still reckon that’s a very beatable score. I see the catkins are out in the hedgerows – spring can’t be too far away 🙂
ooh well done 😀 that makes it 11. Seven more than me…
Patricia Mason (@WoodlouseHouse) said:
This has made me take a good look round and I now have a long job list for tomorrow! On the other hand I rescued a number of bulbs that had grown out of the soil so I will have more flowers later. So what did I find? I already knew about the snowdrops, primulas and hellebores but I was amazed to find two small roses in bloom, a couple of wallflowers, one periwinkle flower, a couple of pink Achillea Millefolium, one cyclamen, a potted Bergenia Cordifolia with two pink buds just opening and a clump of Aubetia with five purple flowers already! So much life in my garden … but it looks so dull! Nice looking new blog by the way!
Ah adding winter flowers is never a hard task 😀 Lovely list, too – I’m amazed your Achilleas are still soldiering on. I had a rose well into December too, till it dropped its petals in a(nother) rain storm.
I make that 10 for you – unless you want to confess to multiple varieties of snowdrops, primulas and hellebores!
(PS glad you like the new look blog!)
*whispers* dare I add I found a pulmonaria and a teensy few rosemary flowers lurking in the undergrowth today? The benefit of going outdside to start off some salad in my shiny new propagator 🙂
PS Have subscribed to you via Blogger. I found out today if people click on the top link to your new home shown on my blog’s sidebar it’ll take them to your Home page unless they click on the link to the blog post itself. Have a look for yourself and see what you think!
haha keep going VP! that makes 13, anyone beat that?
and thanks for the link, that’ll be fine – I really hope I can get the header problem sorted out soon and then I can get the whole thing up and running…
Lovely new blog. Must update my reader forthwith!
I was in the garden on New Year’s Day: from memory, in bloom we had winter jasmine, Helleborus argutifolius, Pulmonaria ‘Blue Ensign’, Scabiosa columbaria ssp ochroleuca, Knautia macedonica (never seems to stop!) and even some aubretia and penstemons still soldiering on.
and primroses of course :). And four days later our first daffodils opened, but that is something else entirely!
Thank you! I had no idea Pulmonarias were out quite this early – another warm-temperature side effect perhaps? Ditto Knautia – must plant some knautia… just love it 😀