Slightly less freezing, the snow starting to melt then turning to ice during the night. Minus 8.7C last night; I’m expecting some of the less hardy to give up in these conditions. Minus 3.5C in the greenhouse last night, which now smells strongly of frost-bitten tulbaghia. Too cold for any outdoor activity so I’m starting off this years veg and being indoors. The big freeze is due to end tomorrow so the landscape will return to its normal form.

Snow clouds approaching tommy-all-alone
Icy morning
Gutter sculpture
Salix in the snow
The last of the miscanthus
The annex garden

Early 2021

Cold and wet, at times bright and mild, but mostly cold and wet.

The railway embankment collapsed from all the rain. Since then there’s been a 24-hour salvage operation, but the relative quiet has been different.

Today there’s snow, we have peak daytime forecast of -1degree C for the next week. It looks like it may settle, so there will be pics to follow.

As always, there’s a few early starters, but even these are a little later than in previous years – which I’m putting down to all the rain.

Good deep colour in this hyacinth
Narcissus romieuxii ‘Julia Jane‘ 
Iris Katharine Hodgkin
Hellebore hybrid
Snowdrops and cyclamen
Winter heliotrope petasites fragrans
Hamamellis mollis pallida
Daphne odora ‘Aureomarginata’
Iris reticulata ‘Katherine gold’
Iris unguicularis ‘Mary Bernard’ 
Iris unguicularis  
A mild bright day earlier in January
Icy lens on an early sunset

Winter 2020

Not much more to be said about our current situation, but on the shortest day there’s a quietness about North Kent that makes this time of year even more unusual. There’s been some rain, some wind, some cold but mostly a combination of all the weathers including mild sunny afternoons and frosty mornings. Not much chance of a white Christmas (or so we are told) – but there will be treats and gifts and a fire.

In the garden its the ideal time to move trees and shrubs, so I have been busy.

A new hedge: this one beech, and another (alder buckthorn) to go in soon

The older beech has been trimmed, now sharper and wider against the winds

Most mornings are misty, rolling down the hill and disappearing by midday
Some leaves left on the sheltered parrotia
The fields were ploughed about a month ago
Seed-grown chimonanthus – first flowering on its 5th birthday
Dried remains of echinacea and variegated euphorbia
Golden miscanthus marking every winter breeze
Golden willow and dried love grass
Sunset on the shortest day

Autumn 2020

Wet grass in the mornings, sun lower in the sky, an amazing range of toadstools; it must be autumn. Time for moving things around, planting bulbs, and for finally getting the whole plot bunny-proofed. The autumn colours seem to get better by the hour. Then – just when they reach their finest – the leaves fall, lying around their former trees, food for worms. Everything ends, and there can be great beauty in these final moments.

Cotinus with acer ginnala ‘flame’
Euonymus alatus (foreground) and white mulberry (background)

Acer rubrum ‘October glory’

Euphorbia and sedum
Viburnum plicatum mariesii and various miscanthus
Zelkova serrata
Schizostylis coccinea ‘river lilly’
Liquidambar styraciflua
Callicarpa bodenieri ‘beauty berry’
Cercis canadensis ‘forest pansy’
Crataegus crus-galii ‘cockspur hawthorn’