Although this could very well be a picture of me finding a new treasure at a favorite nursery, it's actually an illustration by David Catrow for a children's book called Plantzilla.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day and In a Vase on Monday

Wow, it's the middle of January already and, while we know it's winter and freezing weather could return at any time, it's felt a bit like spring lately.  The winter fragrances of Lonicera fragrantissima and Sarcococca have been enhancing my comings and goings for the last few sunny and still days.  Chatting with another patron at a nursery on Sunday we both decided that it would be just fine if we've already seen the worst of winter.

Here's most of what's blooming in my zone 8 western Washington garden this month:

Mahonia × media ‘Charity’

The first hellebores of the season.

Some Saxifrage or other.


Arbutus unedo  is covered with blooms.

Not a very good picture of a not very visually impressive flower.  However, the far-wafting fragrance, drought  and deep shade-tolerance and evergreen presence of Sarcocca earn it many places in my garden

Jasminum nudiflorum
Meanwhile, int the greenhouse, Pinguicula 'pirouette' continues to bloom.

The Schlumbergeras are just starting.

Back outside, one cyclamen bloom.

Viburnum × bodnantense ‘Dawn’

Still only buds on Tetrapanax but they don't look totally dead.  Hope springs eternal.

Garrya elliptica 

Lonicera fragrantissima

 There are a few roses here and there.

Hamamelis × intermedia 'Diane'

Miscanthus sinensis 'Zebrinus' is one of a few dried blooms in the garden and the sole player in today's vase. 

Joining the vase are mementos of seasons past:  Oak leaves from a late summer walk in the park which have somehow retained their green color all this time, an orange pod from Physalis alkekengi (Chinese Lantern,)  cones that have been sitting around and some sort of metal walnuts from an after-Christmas sale.  Not technically from the garden, they're reminiscent of those from the tree across the alley that the squirrels plant all over my garden.

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day is hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens on the fifteenth of every month.

In a Vase on Monday is hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.

Click on the links; join the fun!


  1. What a great vase with the light shining on it. A glowing creation. We got snow last night so no GBBD flowers here.

  2. Beautiful blooms! I had Pansies, but when our temperatures stayed down in the 20sF for four days...well, you know what happened.
    Lovely arrangement in the vase, and you have the perfect background for it!
    Happy Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day!

  3. The Miscanthus faded blooms may be the only player, but your composition turned out great. I don't have a single bloom in the garden; Mahonia ‘Charity’ still setting buds as are the hellebores. It certainly didn't feel very wintery yesterday so I made a small ikebana-like arrangement: all fauna, no flora.

  4. I loved your photos, and just loving all the pictures of what be spring. I'll have to wait a lot longer than you do. Love the arrangement in a vase.

  5. Your Garrya elliptica, OMG! I think we should just declare winter over. Done. Boom...just like that.

  6. The sun and higher temperatures this weekend have been so nice. What a stunner that Garrya is! I caught a whiff of the Sarcococca scent yesterday when I was out in my own garden, it's marvelous!

  7. Wow - that Garrya blows me away!!! Why did I ever (optimistically) think that's a shade plant...? Need to relearn that one. Your vase is stunning - both what you put in it, and the vessel itself. That faceted, colored glass... sigh... Beautiful!

  8. You have so many flowers to show. I hope we've seen the worst of the winter but fear that we have not. That is a stunning vase with the explosion of miscanthus, it looks great in the sun.

  9. You couldn't have sited that vase any better! Your Garrya once again elicited a very deep sigh from me. My plant, now in the ground just over 2 years, is still as dinky as the specimen sent to me from one of California's native plan nurseries. Not dead, mind you, but clearly not thriving either. I'm going give it a firm talking to, reminding it that it's got just one more year under the 3-year rule to prove its worth.

  10. One cyclamen blooming would make me so happy. I can't grow them I have tried several times. It is to hot and dry here.

  11. Your miscanthus looks as if it is dusted with frost! What a gorgeous vase, and as always a lovely collection of little bits and pieces. I do so enjoy seeing all your extras, Peter :)

  12. So much in flower in your garden! Thanks for sharing it all, and that blue sky too. Love the vase and the Miscanthus in the sunlight. :)

  13. I picked some shrub greens for a bouquet today and included sarcococca and winter jasmine. I love the fragrance of the sarcococca and now it is wafting in my house.

  14. What a gorgeous glass vase and with the sunlight flooding it, even better!

  15. Wow, seriously? You already have flowers, fragrance, warmth, and blue skies!? We're going through another snow storm, but looks like there's hope :)

  16. You certainly have a lot of color and it's good to know you have fragrance, too! I hope they make if if you have more cold weather.

  17. Hooray that spring seems to ber around the corner! I really love the arrangement in the vase this week. Quite striking!


Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I love to hear your thoughts.