Survival, toll of Winter

It's been a roller coaster ride. With high winds, frosts, northerly gales, sleet, plenty of rain, etc. this Winter has been all about, well Winter.

It's not the worst on record for low temperatures, high snowfalls (thinking of our friends in the U.S. & Canada, other places), etc. However, it still has taken its toll on plants and the garden. 

This year, the greenhouse hasn't been devastated by high winds, not because we didn't have them, but because I used everything at my disposal to keep it together ... including bricks, boards pallets and wire. It may not be a pretty sight, but it is still standing, which is a small miracle in itself!

The benefit of it remaining in one piece is that there the plants inside have remained sheltered and snug throughout the winter cold and the recent gale force winds we've experienced.  This in turn, means as we head into Spring, I'm not starting from scratch as I had to do last year, to rebuild the greenhouse, staging, etc. 

With the mild weather we had at the start of February, it meant I got to do a touch of cleaning and tidying, but with family, work and some study, I haven't done too much since, apart from a small amount of watering and lighting the heaters on cold nights. 

Other spots in the garden need plenty of attention too, which they will receive in due course. I have a day or two off in March that will allow some time to garden. In the meantime, things are relatively neat and tidy in the space around the small garden.

The bigger side garden is a slightly different matter! The glass house was not as fortunate as the greenhouse and there are some broken panes there which need removing and repairing. The soft fruit area and small vegetable areas need a good deal of attention - I've yet to decide what the plan fr it is this year. 

I'm moving some shrubs into what was the herbaceous and flower border, which will cut down a little on maintenance. I'll be relying on the annuals I'm sowing now for some of the garden colour here. 

The new bed I put together last May gave a great deal of colour and interest last year. It does require a good tidy up and make-over, again which I'll tend to over the coming months. The large bamboo-like canes to the back of the bed are the remains of a Miscanthus, which will reappear in the Spring. I'll make good use of these in the garden through the Spring, not quite sure how or where yet though ...

So, as we approach the last days of our calendar winter, I'm appreciating the relative calm in preparation for an exciting Spring.

Happy gardening.