Into the New Year

As I write it is still the last day of the year and we had some lovely warm sunshine today: 13°C!

So to ring out the old year here are a few pictures of my leisurely wander around the garden with Anouk this morning.

The blue sky and sunshine was a real treat…

This is the corner Anouk likes to inspect first every morning, as the hares come through the fence there…

Still a few rose hips left in the hedge…

And some morning mist across the meadow beyond our fence…

Anouk, checking for mice…

The buzzards often sit on the perches first thing to warm their wings in the sun… we put up several of these to encourage the birds of prey to help keep the mice population down.

The hellebores are in bud!

 

Can she smell Spring? (No, probably deer or hares!)

Wishing you all the very best for the new gardening year. Health, happiness and lots of flowers!

Happy New Year!

 

In a Vase on Monday: The Unusual…

We had terrible gales last week and one of our tall willowy willows was nearly uprooted. As there were fresh shoots at the base of the trunk we decided drastic measures were in order…

…and the top was lopped off!

My Man of Many Talents hated to see the glorious green flowers, smothered in bees, go onto the compost heap and put them in the nearest container he could find.

😃

 

In case you are wondering, it is a pile driver for ramming posts into the ground. Turned upside down it served as a heavy and relatively stable vase!

What surprised us both was the delicious scent coming from the flowers.

I narrowed it down to three, but we were so taken by this strange vase that we both took loads of photos!

I am happy to be joining Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for her Monday meme again and hope you will pop over to see her vase today.

(Not) In a Vase on Monday: Advent Wreath

It is Monday again (where did last week go?) and time to join Cathy (Rambling in the Garden) for a vase. Instead of searching (quite possibly in vain) for something to cut today, I decided to have a go at making a wreath. The neighbouring farmer is very good to us and came over specially to bring me some ‘premium’ fir branches he had saved. Some spruce was cut down near us last week, but he insisted fir was better. After years of calling all evergreens ‘firs’ I am slowly learning to remember the difference. Living on the edge of the Bavarian Forest and having a small area of woodland too means I must make the effort! Having two languages as well as botanical names makes it a bit tricky. 😉

The finished wreath:

Well, thank goodness for YouTube videos as I immediately got the hang of it after watching one and the result was better than I had expected and certainly easier than attempts in previous years! We have no berries left for decorations, so I added some of my favourite little tree decorations and placed a new candle at the centre. Many people have four candles on their crowns, one for each sunday in Advent. But I chose one large candle I had in reserve for the middle.

There are such pretty candles in the shops and at the markets here at Christmas and I always buy far too many… I was so glad of this as I had plenty of unused ones in my ‘stash’ for this year. My decorations are mostly from the Christmas markets and this pewter one is one of my favourites…

Do you make a wreath or crown for Christmas? What materials do you use? And do you have a favourite Christmas decoration?

Wishing you all a lovely week full of little pleasures and joys as appropriate (and necessary) for the season!

🎄🥨🎄

In a Vase on Monday: Snow Day

Have you had snow?

Well, the snow plough managed to get through the woods this morning after we were snowed in all of yesterday –  all day Sunday it snowed heavily non-stop so we have about 40cm of fluffy white stuff with drifting too. Several trees and branches also came down across the road, which my Man of Many Talents is now dealing with. ☃️

Can you spot the herb bed in this view?

The colour of my flower for this week’s contribution to Cathy ‘s meme (Rambling in the Garden) is appropriate – snow white. The name is less fitting – ‘Alfresco’. I won’t be spending much time outdoors as, despite beautiful sunshine today, it is below freezing!

Hippeastrum Alfresco

Last week’s Amaryllis flower is now over but there are more to come!

Do visit Cathy to see what others are finding in the middle of winter to put in their vases.

Hope you are all getting some winter sunshine!