Category Archives: backyard bed

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – December 2016

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day has arrived on our frosty, snow-covered Lot in Zone 6a. At the beginning of last weekend the snow began to fall and did not stop throughout the weekend. At this posting we have settled into the winter routine, with the Other Half graciously clearing the sidewalks and drive with the snow shovel. The city has dug itself out and activities around here resumes as normal. The Lot is now covered in a powdery, white blanket which doubles as the poor man’s mulch to protect hibernating perennials from the brisk winter temperatures and harsh winds.

Snow Blooms

Full disclaimer right now; you are not going to see colorful flowers in this Bloom Day post. If you’d prefer those, and I wouldn’t be offended, head over to May Dreams Gardens to scope out some southern gardens. However, we do have some snow blooms to log, something that hasn’t happened since December Bloom Day 2013.

The Sweet Autumn clematis (Clematis paniculata) wasn’t around in 2013, but it has had a spectacular season on the Lot and continues to be beautiful into this month. I’ve left all the seed heads and vines in place (they’re just so darn purdy!), and when the snow fell it was light enough to create powdery blooms.

Check out the textures of the feathery seeds combined with the snow.

Always wonderful in the winter is snowfall upon stalks and seed heads of the purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea).

The old rose at the southwest corner of the house is forming curious looking blooms resembling icicles.

Yes, I know. They’re icicles, but pretty neat looking, right?

The burning bush (Euonymus alatus) has a strong enough structure to hold the weight of most  snowfalls and therefore regularly provides winter interest.

Other plants on the Lot do not. Here’s the false indigo (Baptisia australis) looking less than impressive under the weight of the snow.

The maiden grass (Miscanthus sinensis) doesn’t look much better after more than a dusting of snow. I hadn’t secured the stalks together with twine as I had in years before.

Last but not least is this winter-themed hanging container I found while taking photos for today. UGH. You think you have everything in the garden put away for winter, and then you come across this!

So now a gardener goes back to her notes from the season and makes an attempt to bring the journal up to date. It’s a bit tricky to stay on top of the task during the growing season. However, this year involved a lot of Sherlock-ing some growing challenges, so I want to make sure I have those logged. Can’t wait to see what spring brings!

First Freeze and Snowfall

Brr. That cold snap is turning into a day of snow. This morning I looked out the back window into the garden and noticed what looked like white blooms on the anemone.


Upon closer inspection, the white “blooms” were the seedheads of the plant. This is the first year the anemone has been on the Lot, so I didn’t know that about this plant.


The first hard freeze has come and gone. The random volunteer gourd plant growing from the house bed has been zapped.


As well as the handful of begonias I was gifted this spring.


And the hostas in both Loki’s bed and the gate bed.


The maiden hair fern and Japanese painted fern both were bitten by the frost as well.


We feel the Lot is ready for the weather cooling and the plants (at least above ground) shutting down. Everything is put to bed for winter to arrive.

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – November 2016

November on the Lot is always rather quiet so there is not much to post for Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. Today was quite cold and soggy while earlier this week it was warmer. It will be a matter of days before we get our first hard frost which will finish off the dwindling annuals.

This first set of blooms is the alyssum planted from seed between the two vegetable beds. Mom G. has this annual in her garden and it has resown itself every year.


The next bloom is from an ice plant just obtained from an end-of-summer sale and placed in the main backyard bed.


Most of the purple coneflowers have gone black and died, which was perfect decor for Halloween! However, this last bloom is hanging on.


The jupiters beard begins blooming in spring and keeps at it until the snow covers it, as evidence by the bloom below.


Also still  blooming are the lamium and lavender. More blooms can be spotted over at May Dreams Gardens, the wonderful hostess of Bloom Day.