Here on the rainy side of the Pacific Northwest, January is a dark, dreary month. The days are still short, and clouds and rain are near-constants. Most of my gardening this time of year is of the armchair variety--poring over seed catalogs, reading back issues of garden magazines, and imagining the perfect garden that will, of course, never exist. We had a rare sunny winter day yesterday, though, so I was able to weed two large flowerbeds and plant some poppy seeds. I also spent a few minutes outside with my camera. My yard seems nearly barren except for the evergreen trees, shrubs, and ferns, and spring seems a long way off. If I look closer, however, I see the first signs of spring. Here--let me show you:
Hellebores are the earliest-blooming plants in my garden. It's such a delight to see some color on these dark days.
The vegetable garden isn't a complete wasteland. Here's some garlic, along with a couple of winter weeds I was too lazy to pull:
Continuing with the edibles, both the red and green rhubarb are breaking ground:
The woodland garden is beautiful even in winter, because the sword ferns look fresh and green:
I don't know what those mysterious red berries are. They grow on wild vines that I keep mostly pulled, but I let a few stay so I can enjoy the berries in winter. Here's a closeup:
And then there are the spring bulbs. Daffodils and Spanish bluebells are just starting to break ground:
And finally, filbert catkins grace the winter landscape:
It's still winter, but the days are getting longer, and the first plants of spring are pushing sleepily through the sodden soil. Hope is on the horizon...
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