I‘ve been taking the 365 photo challenge, taking at least 1 photo everyday. I decided to make it a 365garden photo challenge and I don’t think I could have picked a worst year. This winter has been very dreary. Gray skies and brown plants. Even though there are plenty of evergreens, colorful and interesting bark, and even a few intact seed heads and flowers, they are not being seen to their best advantage.
I never thought I’d miss snow. I know how good it is at insulating and protecting plants, but I’ve always been willing to sacrifice a few plants for the sake of a warm winter. That’s fine when I’m simply looking out the window, but trying to find something photogenic everyday is proving to be a challenge.
I started the challenge by posting the photos on instagram, but they just aren’t flashy enough for that platform. I was afraid the good folks working there were going to email me and explain that the whole point behind instagram is to post something pretty and possibly send me to remedial instagram lessons. From now on, I’ll only post garden porn there.
I’ve moved my garden365 to Pinterest, where no one else has to see it, but I will still have a record of my garden for the entire year.
If nothing else, this little experiment has made me look much, much closer at the plants and it certainly made me more aware of the affect of weather on the garden in winter. As I mentioned last month, this is the first year my hellebores were ready to bloom at Christmas. The daffodils are up. So is the garlic. And several shrubs were starting to break bud. Oh, and the opossum and groundhogs were up and about. Not good.
I’m very glad I decided not to cut things back this fall or I don’t know what I’d be photographing. Evergreen are beautiful in the snow, but they become routine if you photograph them everyday. Have you noticed how much the color of yellow evergreens turns a muddy mustard-like tone, in cold weather? The blue needles stay icy clear, but the yellow are off their game. Not enough sun?
The deep freeze will come soon, I’m sure. There will also be snow, although I hope not like last year. The only real mystery is what the garden will look like in the spring. But as a friend said to me recently, “A dead plant is just an opportunity to try something new.”