Hello friends! I hope you & your gardens are well!
I'm back from an unintentional hiatus of sorts the result of germs, family matter & scares and a whirl-wind road trip from NJ to FL and back again in exactly 7 days! Mom's health scare, which many of you comforted me through, shortened our trip by a couple of days, but because of my father.in.law's health, it was absolutely necessary for us to go down to FL anyway. (Mom stayed with my Aunt while we were away, we didn't just leave her home by herself!) We've been back since late last Sunday evening and are still adjusting nearly a week later. Or readjusting as the case may be since Hubbs returned to his full time job on Tuesday after having been home for over two months on Winter layoff, which has us both getting into our "what's old is new again" routines.
I always say, it's all about "turning upheaval into revival." (I even have that under my header on my personal blog!)
Throughout the South, it was a delightful distraction for this Northeast gal being treated to Spring blooms in February of Winter. I've been dreaming of hidden historic gardens, Camellias and Angel Oaks draped in Spanish Moss since Charleston, SC, one of our planned detours along our trip south. We experienced just about every kind of weather along the way to & fro except an ice storm: Wind storm, heavy rains, record heat & humidity (in North Central FL), thunderstorms, hail, tornado's (in GA & Western NC), snow (in VA) and temps ranging from the 30s to the 90s! (Thankfully we packed accordingly as it turns out).
Temps here in NJ Zone 7a soared into the 60s & 70s this week then promptly plummeted and today I don't think we got out of the 30s. Tomorrow, we're supposed to warm back up into the 60s and stay that way (or get warmer) for the coming week.
I don't know what to make of it all either!
My coastal garden is beginning to yawn & stretch, awakening from what little Winter slumber its' had. All of the Roses are covered in new growth, the Raspberry canes are budding, Clematis 'Daniel Deronda' has foliage, 'Strawberries & Cream' Hydrangea's buds are unfurling, purple Crocus are ready to open and the Snowdrops are still going strong along the back fence despite blooming 6 weeks early this year.
It's so exciting to see the garden come back to life! I took my first "official" Garden Walk of 2012 this morning! (Click here to view the photos).
The landscape of our back yard has changed yet again! While we were away, the house across the power company right-away traded out their brown stockade fence for a shorter, white decorative fence. It actually reflect a lot of light into our yard & kitchen which I like because they've always been on the dark side. (Luke, I am your father! Ha ha! Dark side? Anyhoo...) The fact that I can see more of her house than before though makes me even more self conscious about our privacy and how much of it we've lost since Hurricane Irene last August. (Aside from that, I don't care about the fence one way or another, or what anyone does with their home/property for that matter, that's their business!) It's amazing the domino affect that one storm can bring to your surroundings! As a result, this week may be the perfect time to take photos of the back yard, print them on copy paper, tape them together for a 'panoramic' view and get to sketching out the idea's that are rolling around in my head for this new season! (Something I do annually).
Next week, I'd like to do an Irish themed gardening post in honor of St. Patrick's Day, but I'm not sure it will pan out! I'm Irish and in recent years, it's become very important to me to learn about & connect with my heritage(s - there are others) but I've yet to do so in the gardening sense so we'll see!
Lastly, don't forget to Spring Forward when you go to bed tonight!
Until next time...
NJ Zones 7a & 6b
New Jersey Through My Eyes