We have had a very mild winter – Dec 2011-Feb 2012. Camellias and Japanese apricots have bloomed nonstop for us. Now with a few daffodils and hellebores in flower we get a week of wind and a blast of artic air coming in from Canada.
I was quick to retrieve my unplanted, container-grown shrubs and group them next to the northside of our house and mulch them in well. Some shrubs that get purchased in the winter have a way of stockpiling until spring rolls around; this is not in there best interest I know. Seeing the terminal buds showing green, I knew that their roots were growing and they were vulnerable to freezing temperatures. Though we garden in Zone 7a, the recent night temps have hovered in the teens, viz..though not reaching average minimum temps of 0-5 F. Thank God !
It would be great to have a blanket of snow for a couple days, just to see the beauty of winter; however, we are comfortable with an early spring and look forward to turning the soil again in the vegetable garden. ( The urge or necessity to put my bass boat in the water comes to mind with every mild, sunny day! Water draws me much like an unruly twig shooting out of a wellgroomed hedge.) I do have a passion for gardening but a warm day on the lake trumps a walk in the garden, I must admit !
I saw a new planted of ‘Crimson Candles’ camellias beginning to bloom this week and must get one. They are very floriferous and have 2-inch double crimson flowers- no the usual look of japonicas. I acquired two new trees….the sweet heart tree and seven sons tree. The Shooting Star hydgranea has been a conversation piece at my garden club presentations. I should be receiving a commission from the breeder for extolling the accolades on this unique cultivar if the Bigleaf/lacecap species.