Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Steadfast Garden Presence

Galanthus elwesii has been the best performer of three or so species I've tried in the general long run for gardens. It is bigger, earlier, and prettier, ( in my opinion) than G. nivalis (common) or G. ikariae at my old garden in Grand Junction. Also more rugged to mistreatment.
I have found that one of the several better patches of it try to bloom in the middle of winter rather than at the end, and this is one of those. The day after the photo, snow finalyl came to Colorado lowlands, and stayed.

Bird's Eye view of part of my first garden. Now that it has had a few years to settle in and fill in, I feel it is time to rip up a part of it whose design I've never liked. I'm so fickle. Just enjoy the different colours in the winter.
Bergenia cordata hybrid. It always signs up for bold evergreen burgundy presence. A commonly available plant that ought to be thought of more for that characteristic.
A new Fargesia nitida and a bird-donated in-situ Mahonia sp. seedling. Both keep the garden's foot in the door so that it does not become invisible in winter. Sometimes I really appreciate the help they lend. The leaves of the Mahonia ("Oregon Grape") are so very nice backlit with winter's low sun, and will go back to dark green right after they have complimented the daffodils. Any design subtleties are accidental for me. Like I wrote, sometimes I really appreciate their (the plant's) work. For instance...

My Oregon grape gets me all New-Year Sentimental: This is what the Mahonia (before you get too attached to calling them Oregon Grape) in Southern India's high mountains are doing in winter; photo taken almost exactly a year ago. Mahonia nepalensis.

If it weren't for simple plants like these, I would be tempted to go indoors, go into a nice little clinical depression, and write off the idea of being outdoors when winter comes in earnest. Fancy that.

1 comment:

ann said...

Ooh, lovely Indian Mahonia! Thanks for another post. Happy NEW Year!