Saturday, January 30, 2016


I wasn't planning on my spring window box looking so good in January. I'm afraid it will be worn out by the time the real spring comes in March and April. But what's a gardener to do? Always be on the ready for something different. This is Texas. No two years are ever the same. This time we are having another dry spell but plenty of sunshine and warmer than expected days.

Exactly how long those ornamental cabbages will last I don't know. I remove leaves from the bottom fairly frequently so they are getting taller each week. Maybe it will leave more room for the pansies and violas. At the back are stocks and red flax, which I started from seed, and snapdragons.

I bought this planter from Gardeners' Supply with a gift coupon. It is self watering and holds 3 gallons of water in the reservoir. This certainly makes watering a lot easier. It has been one of my major success purchases, so yesterday, tempted by the fact that they were on sale, I bought another one. That means I will be able to plant up another one in readiness for when this one is finished. It's a luxury but I still had money left on the gift certificate and have decided it is a gift certificate well spent.
Elsewhere in the garden there are some early bloomers. I wish they would wait because it is going to get cold again. Grape hyacinths among their tangle of foliage. Is there a grape hyacinth that has shorter foliage?

The first of the square-bud primrose, Calylophus berlandieri.

And a very early blooming blanket flower, Gaillardia pulchella, sheltered between the walls of the raised beds.

It isn't so much that these last plants aren't hardy enough to survive a few frosts, they have already had at least five, but I would like to see them in my spring garden.

It's good there is something out there for the bees because they have been in evidence once the day warms. They love the sweet smelling alyssum, which has great depth of color in the winter. This is one plant I never need to buy as it seeds itself readily.
But don't leave here with the impression that my garden is full of flowers. It still has that winter look.

The English garden
 It may not have quite the bare look of winters gone bye but I think there is probably time for that to happen.


  1. I always think the same - its great to see flowers in the winter, but then what will there be in spring? I guess you can still look forward to your bluebonnets?

  2. The window box must be a joy from both inside and outside the house! Enjoy the blooms now and if the plants get tuckered out, I bet you'll be able to find seedlings in your garden to fill in the blank spaces in the spring.

  3. You'll have plenty of flowers in spring, I have no doubt, and as you say, it's nice for the bees to have something now. Your window boxes are smashing! Smart of you to buy another.

  4. I love that color combination you selected. The pops of yellow from the pansies is just right! And, how clever of you to have a second window box to plant up and have ready in the wings for constant color. I'll be interested to see how long that three gallon reservoir lasts in the heat yet to come. And while I'm resigned to the warm temperatures cropping up now and again during what passes for "winter" in our area, I sure would be happy if we got some rain!

  5. The Gaillardia and the sweet alyssum both look fantastic!! Bravo! :)