Monday, January 17, 2011

The pleasure of our gardens, part 14

Calla lily / Our first bloom of  the season

One of the many joys of living in northern California is gardening year-round, including winter.  With daytime temperatures reaching the mid-60s last weekend, my wife and I took advantage of the opportunity to get outside and catch up on some overdue yard work and to spend some quality time in our gardens.

We have been waiting what seems an eternity ~ actually a couple of months ~ for a warm, dry weekend.  Because the sun doesn't always shine on cue, we've endured many weekends of rainy and often-chilly temperatures. Certainly, it doesn't measure up that what many of my friends across the country in the East and Midwest have endured:  namely, sub-freezing temperatures and snowy blizzards.  But, we do get spoiled by our moderate, year-round climate.

Our fuchsia / A colorful edition to our front yard

So, with sunny skies aplenty on Saturday afternoon, I mowed and edged the lawn and pulled some weeds, while my wife trimmed back branches to several of our rose bushes; pruning them will come soon.  Then, it was time to take stock of what all of the winter rain has meant to our garden:  Our camellia bush, which has been blooming consistently since November, still has several blooms; ditto for our azalea.  Meanwhile, our fuchsia has enjoyed quality growth thanks to the abundance of rain this season.

Our camellia bush / Late season bloomer

Finally, the first of our calla lilies, which reside on the cool and shady east side of our house, is about a week away from opening its spathe (the part of the lily that is white and shaped like the bell of a trumpet).

Each of our plants has its own growth cycle during the year. Luckily, there is always something in bloom.

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