I had a break this afternoon from work and decided to take a walk around the property to see whats happening and what green or blooming plants in mid-January I could find. As I type this though its 5:12 and already dark… ugh, this is about the time of year when I get a little eager for spring. My seed order is in, bulbs are starting to pop out of the group, and I am tired of the rain and early sunsets. My walk helped though and I thought I would share some of my plants.
The one plant I am dying to see this year is my pink dawn viburnum. There is one outside the Master Gardener classroom in Snohomish County. I love watching it in the early spring and the scent is wonderful. I planted mine 2 years ago and last spring it didn’t do much. This year though I can tell already its going to be great. I have one pretty pink blossom already and many others are on the way!
I have a few plants that are green but not real impressive. I have this geranium roxanne. The story behind this one is fun though. My husband and I stayed at a bed and breakfast in Montana called the Shire of Montana… and it was a Hobbit shire… the house was underground and made of beautiful wood carvings. The acres around the
house were full of hobbits houses, fairy areas, streams with bridges. Its hard to explain… they have been on TV and won awards for the best movie themed guest house. But they also do a good job of gardening and plant design. Outside the main doorway is a geranium roxanne… and there was a small portion where I could see the plant was sprouting roots above ground… and because of the roots I knew it would probably live inside a damp paper towel on the 2 day trip back home. So I took the cutting and it lived and now it has a cherished spot in the garden.
The next plant is Sarcococca hookeriana (var. Purple stem). This is a plant that I smelled at the Northwest Flower and Garden show 2 years ago and fell in love with. The great thing is that once you learn how to pronounce the name that the hardest thing about having this plant! Its great in dry shade so I keep it by our north facing entry door… and although the blooms are little they smell very sweet. Its common name is sweet box in fact. I have another one, a ruscifolia, but its not growing quite as well as the hookeriana.
This Mexican Orange (Choisya ternata ‘Sundance’) is a great addition for winter evergreen color. This is its third year and it really did well this last year. The colors are nice all year long and they are supposed to have white flowers (similar to the real mock orange) that I have yet to see. I think I may try propagating this one this year as I love the plant so much.
This Euphorbia, ruby glow, has a wonderful deep red maroon color although the new growth starts out as a lime green yellow. It seems like an odd color combination but it works for the plant. In my main perennial bed I have a theme color of deep dark red and this is one of the plants I repeat multiple times in the bed for that low growth of red color. You can also see Sedum rupestre ‘Angelina’ (Stone orpine) as the lime green in the middle.
I have a number of climbers also, including this evergreen climbing hydrangea (moonlight vine) I’ve spent about 4 years trying to train up the tree branches. Its finally starting to work… now if it would only bloom!
Silver Bells Chocolate Vine -Akebia quinata ‘Silver Bells’
This Akebia vine was only planted in August but it has been going strong all winter. The description says evergreen in mild winters… not sure we’ve had a mild winter but I’m happy its still green.
These lavenders were planted mid summer and seem to be doing well.
This Bergenia looks pretty bad… but I only planted it in like August and I had it sitting in a pot all summer. So I’m just happy its alive.
I was happy to see my artichokes were doing pretty good. I admit I think I planted them too close to each other as I hear when they are mature they will be big. I have two here as one appears to have died. I have heard that they produce really beautiful flowers if you let them flower instead of cutting them to eat. I don’t remember the variety as I got them from the Master Gardener plant sale and didn’t grow them from seed myself.
These are some herbs that are still doing well. I have sage, peppermint and a curry plant. Yeah, don t ask about the curry plant… it smells like curry but I have no idea what I’m going to do with it. I have heard it wards off cats and so I was thinking about putting in places I don’t want the chickens to go. I also have a bay laurel growing strong. Its only a year
and a half old so its not huge and I haven’t harvested bay leaves yet.
I also had some roses that were green but looked alittle worn so I didn’t photograph them. We have some black bamboo in containers in the front of the house that are still green but also look a tad sad.
So that’s the update for green or blooming plants in mid-January. I hope that mid-February will be better… I know it will be better! Lots of daffodils and tulips this year… I can’t wait.