At least it’s so cold there’s no mud.
Construction on the border wall has halted for the winter. The whole thing has been shaped and smeared with a nice layer of topsoil, and all that’s left to add is a row of spruce along the top. Dark, gloomy, rooty, overbearing spruce that shall eventually loom over my sunny garden. As you can see I’m still trying to be optimistic about it all.
We’re home today waiting for the snow to fall and that seems like the perfect time to get in a few pictures and celebrate an anniversary. For me January is an agonizingly slow gardening month, and apparently that was also the case six years ago when in a moment of boredom I found out just how easy it was to start a free online blog through WordPress. Six years and six thousand snowdrop pictures later I’m still here and although the heyday for blogs seems to have peaked and waned I’m more than happy to keep going on more than I need to about my somewhat suburban, somewhat middle of nowhere Pennsylvania garden.
Over the years this gardener has been slowly learning a thing or two but it’s always an uphill battle. This winter’s “learning opportunity” was not having enough snowdrops and cyclamen to fill my winter garden. It was a trifecta of bad decisions and luck which began with me planting out all the potted snowdrops, me not buying any bulk snowdrops for forcing, and me leaving the dormant cyclamen tubers in a spot which took on the brunt of last summer’s endless rainfall. Then I brilliantly chose to reduce the number of geraniums under lights. In hindsight it’s all my fault, but fortunately I have some experience coping with that as well 🙂
Since the winter garden is kind of a flop this year, my natural response is to go all out and make it even bigger! The area which hosts my grow area was originally built as a workshop, and I’d been using it for tools and storage and some of the messier projects, but enough of that.
After these pictures were taken I hauled everything home-improvement and woodshop related out and started moving lights and tables into hopefully “better” spots. Most is still a complete mess but at the far end of the back room, near the furnace where it always stays warm, I’ve already set up two lights for the coleus and other goodies which need a reliably warm spot.
There are still a number of little things I have to deal with in the main (colder) area such as a leaky foundation, burst water pipes, and electrical issues but I’m sure that will just clear up practically on its own and I’ll be planting again in no time. For now though it’s keeping me off the internet and slowing down my new-plant-buying compulsions that all gardeners face at this time of year.
Maybe in a few weeks there will be something slightly less depressing to look at in the winter garden. Most years this is a pleasant hideaway to escape the cold and brown that lurks outside but so far the winter of 2019 is still a work in progress. We’ll see though. It’s remarkably easy to fill up these light tables and come to think of it there are still a few potted primula outside that I could probably chip out of the ice and drag inside before the snow and cold become too unreasonable. Hmmmmm.