macjohn@mac.com macjohn@mac.com
Wed, 30 Jan 2013 12:45:46 PST
Well, for me the surprise was seeing that the Adonis was still fully in flower after a week of temperatures down to the low teens capped by snow and ice.
In Frederick County, Maryland and barely zone 7...

On Jan 30, 2013, at 10:29 AM, Jim McKenney <jamesamckenney@verizon.net> wrote:

> The temperature this morning at 6:30 A.M. was about 50 ⁰ F; I looked a few minutes ago and it's already over 60 ⁰ F: we might top 70 ⁰ F today, and with it we might have thunderstorms. This is winter? 
> I took a quick tour of the front garden this morning (I'm currently housebound and don't get out much) and was happy to see tommies wide open out in the lawn, nowhere near the shelter of a wall. And here and there a bit of yellow showed that the winter aconites are up, too. Galanthus elwesii and other early snowdrops are up and wide, wide open, and Cyclamen coum is blooming.  Hellleborus foetidus, not a geophyte but a great companion for them, is in full bloom. Titmice and wrens are calling, so there's a bit of the feeling of spring in the air. 
> I opened the cold frames the day before yesterday: that week we spent in the deep freeze had no apparent effect on the plants in the frames. 
> Iris unguicularis continues to bloom. 
> Some small, very fragrant florist versions of Cyclamen persicum bought last winter at one of the big box stores are blooming now in one of the cold frames. Keep these cold and you really get your money's worth from them. A nice companion plant for these: the garden forms or hybrids of Primula acaulis. These are in the florists' shop corners of the grocery stores now selling for 3 for $5 for plants in full bloom. As with  the cyclamens, in the house they might last a week or two, but in the cold frames they go on and on providing gorgeous color (but unfortunately no fragrance). 
> A handsome red fox sat in the middle of the garden right out in the full sun yesterday. I watched it with binoculars: every once and a while its eyes would start to close as if it were about to doze off in the warmth of the sun - but it never settled down for a snooze.  
> Jim McKenney
> Montgomery County, Maryland, USA, USDA zone 7
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Gardens grow wilder every day

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