End of Month Review December 2023

I think it is fair to say that December was rainy.  Gosh so much rain, rain that has continued pretty much unabated into the first days of January.  I never expect to be in the garden every day, but it has been so hard to get into the garden at all in December.  The rainy weekends in particular, the main time I have to garden, have thwarted my gardening needs.

The cypress trees in the front garden would like a without prejudice conversation about having their tops cut off to make sure they do not grow too big.  I have already had to do this once to them and luckily they recover their shape very well.  Fond of them as I am, I cannot have them towering over the house and cutting out mine (and possibly my neighours') light.
In the front lawn the first of the crocii are starting to emerge.  I wonder if these are the ones that have evolved the ability to breathe under water?  It might be useful if they did.
The Smell me and Dye Garden is looking wet.  There has been some cutting back and pruning and I am looking forward to developing this part of the garden further this year.  I really have to finish off the gravel paths, there is still a large bag of gravel waiting on the drive.
In the Courtyard Garden all is mossy and damp.  The Camellia rosthorniana 'Cupido' has moved to further back in the Courtyard as I think she needs a little more shade than she was getting.  She is also desperate to be repotted in the Spring and I have promised her this will happen.  The little Christmas Tree has moved back to the side and is half relaxing/half sulking that its time in the spotlight is done for this season.
and the Edgeworthia chrysantha 'Red Dragon' is fattening up its buds and getting ready to flower.  I bought this shrub last Spring and it lives in a container for now.  It needs to get bigger before I risk it in the ground.
In the main garden all is very very squelchy, rarely if ever has the garden been this wet.  You can press your foot into the lawn and water squelches up.  
The moments I have grabbed to get outside I have used to start the rose pruning and other shrub pruning.  This is really quite a therapeutic thing to do.
Snowdrops are appearing,
some early, battered but undeterred primroses are peering into flower,
and the first hellebores are starting to flower.
Salix Mount Aso is starting its pink fluffy thing.
and in the Wild Garden the cyclamen are starting to flower well.  You can also see some annual weed seedlings appearing - ignore them, I am, I am hoping the frosts will teach them a thing or two.
The Garrya elliptica is looking rather wonderful, she needs staking to be a bit more upright but I am really pleased at her sudden amazingness she has decided to be.  The Pinus mugo pumilio by the side has also grown really well, I it has grown a good 10 inches,  so I think she might leap up fast now that her roots have had some time to really settle.
The large Edgeworthia chrysantha is laden with buds.  This time last year the buds had been hit by an early frost that burned off almost all of them.  This year she looks much better.
The two Daphne Jacqueline Postills are also budding up nicely, impatient to get flowering and scenting up the garden.
Hang on a minute, this is not the pond!  There are puddles in the garden where there are not usually puddles, there is even evidence of a small stream running down the garden that has never been there before.  
The pond that is actually the pond is of course full.  If it was not full it would mean it definitely had a leak.  

We are about to hit a frosty few days so this mild mild December will soon be forgotten as we move into the colder days.  A few cold but dry days would be welcome as they would enable the ground to recover a bit from the rainy onslaught.  We can but hope.

Take care and be kind.

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  1. Oh, I know how frustrating extremely rainy times can be. We seem to fluctuate between too little and too much rain from year to year, and not as many "normal" precipitation years recently . Your garden looks very happy and healthy, though.


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