Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year - but first, Happy Old Year!

Each month of this year held something to brighten my gardening outlook. So on this last day of 2013, I'm taking a little trip through my photo files to revisit a few garden highlights of the year.  Please join me to celebrate 2013!

In January, the golden-orange foliage of Libertia peregrinans 'Bronze Sword' warmed up the otherwise cool, green winter garden at Longview Ranch.

February brought the Northwest Flower and Garden Show in Seattle with its mix of display gardens that ranged from the inspiring to the absurd. I've attended every year since at least 2007.

This year I met fellow blogger Alison Conliffe of Bonney Lassie in person at the show! That's Alison on the right, my sister, Sally, in the middle, and me on the left.

In March at Fry Road Nursery, tables of fascinating patterned foliage made me wonder what I had discovered.

No, not some crazy species of Manfreda - these were tulip bulbs! With foliage like this, who cares what the flowers look like?

An April visit to Altadena included this upward view through beautiful Engelmann Oaks and citrus.

Due to their impending retirement and and move, it was also a farewell to this lovely and relaxing garden my brother- and sister-in-law made. I will miss the comfortable patio and the warm, pleasant evenings spent with them here.
In May, Longview Ranch really started to strut its stuff. Flowers and more flowers declare what I try to deny: In spite of my love for high summer, Longview Ranch is quite a spring garden, too.

June brought my first Garden Blogger's Fling. What an adventure! Having only posted once about the Fling, I have barely scratched the surface of the hundreds of pictures I took. I've been saving them for deep winter when I need to escape from the cold and wet. Here's a tiny taste of the warmth to come...

Our July 4th weekend was spent up on Mt. Hood in a Steiner cabin. A walk in the woods yielded sightings of some delicate wildflowers, including my first-ever Indian Pipes. 

In August, we held our garden open for the Overlook Neighborhood Sustainable Garden Tour. A mission of Sustainable Overlook is to make our Portland neighborhood the first pesticide-free neighborhood in the nation. To judge from the comments we heard and the people who pledged, progress is being made!

September brought the blues of late summer to Longview Ranch. The deep coloring of Salvia 'Black and Blue' and a NOID Caryopteris are some of my favorites.

In October spiders returned to the garden, and with them a tinge of autumn coloring. Though mostly still green, it became clear that fall was on the way.

November color ran high as vines, shrubs and berries showed off their intense last days leading up to a winter nap.

December's cold, clear mornings made for some beautiful sunrises, while her surprise cold snap made me worry about all of my semi-tender plants.

Although Abutilons seem to have perished, they had a good three-year run.
Winter isn't over yet, but I think I've had good luck. Some plants seem surprisingly untouched, including (fingers crossed) several Phormiums, including this  P. tenax 'Rubrum'.

And just like that, we bid a fond farewell to 2013.

I'll look forward to seeing you on these pages, and at the Garden Blogger's Fling here in Portland in 2014.  Happy New Year!


  1. Of course, one of my favorite events from this year was finally getting to see your garden, Jane! I love your description of the Garden shows...a mix of inspiring and absurd...so true! Happy New Year!

  2. What a lovely walk through this past year, on garden time. I'l admit the blues in your September garden were amazing! Happy New Year!

  3. Fab post, MulchMaid! Love it, thank you for the tour! Bye bye Abutilons, hello Phormiums...me too...Happy New Year!

  4. Happy new year, Jane. No posts of the Fling yet? How do you retain it all....

  5. Are you absolutely sure the Abutilons are dead? Might they leaf out again or come back from the roots? I loved getting to meet you this year, and getting to see your garden. Happy Old Year and Happy New Year too!

  6. Hi Jane, Great post! I'm with Alison, I'm going to believe our abutilons will come back from the roots. Your garden is so gorgeous. I look forward to seeing it in person at the Fling. And seeing you again. And seeing your photos from the 2013 fling. We need all the color we can get this time of year. Hugs my friend.

  7. I just love your garden - Happy New Year!

  8. Great review of the year. I love those wildflowers! Happy 2014, Jane. Hope to see you at the fling in Portland.

  9. You did lots of cool things in 2013! Here's to a great 2014! Looking forward to the fling! Will you be coming up to the NWFGS this year? Happy New Year!

  10. 2013 was obviously a very good year. Thanks for sharing a look back, and here's to an even better one coming up.

  11. Jane, you inspire me! (One of my goals is to have something blooming each month :) ). Love seeing plants that (sadly I've found) don't grow well here on the East Coast near the ocean. And I agree with the others: I have found out that "If you leave it alone in the ground long enough, it WILL come back from the dead"!!! (Ha ha)

  12. Lovely plants here and lovely photographs. I love all those blues. I find that on a cold winter's day it is so good to look back over last year's highlights.


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