Winter Delights

I was so excited about and inspired by the appearance of the great horned owl nesting in the oak tree at Camp Dularge last weekend, that I decided to take photos of the flowers that are still blooming despite temperatures that have dropped close to freezing a couple of times already.

It might even surprise you to know that the annuals were all planted back when my friend, B.B., came down to help me make a flower bed at Camp Dularge back in spring 2010.

So, if your winter is cold, dull, and gray, these photos should bring you some warmth and color.

I hope you enjoy them.

This Knockout Rose is in full bloom, even though it is time for her to be pruned way back.  She has no idea, and I just didn’t have the heart to take the pruning shears to her the other day.

This pot should have pansies in it, but these two hangers-on just won’t let go of their lives and be replaced by the little flat-faced flowers.

The hardiness of these geraniums Begonias has made me a firm believer that this is definitely a “go-to” old-fashioned flower.  They handle extreme heat, almost any soil condition, and keep coming back for more abuse.

Even the wildflowers are taking their chances with the freezing temps.  This is a little Wood Sorrel that thrives in this pot, alongside the Cajun Hibiscus that has not fared too well since last winter’s hard freeze (even though she was cut back).

Here’s the pink sister of the previous Geranium  Begonia.

And yet some more Geranium Begonia cousins.  I will be buying lots more of these for the flower bed this spring.  Almost can’t wait.

Since that was my first real day off the sick bed, I mustered up the energy to dig a nice hole for this beauty.

Her name is Sweet Bay Laurel.  A kind, generous, thoughtful reader felt sorry for me the day I was scrounging leaves from a Camphor Tree (?) in the backyard in hopes that the leaves were of the bay variety.  This most certainly is a bay tree, and BW will no long fear poisoning the stock she  makes when using these scented leaves.  Thank you, Mr. Anonymous!

Winter is indeed upon us, but not by the looks of these lovelies.  I’m sure they won’t last much longer, though, so I will enjoy them while they last.

What brightens up your winter days?



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  1. You know what brightens my winter days? Your posts, and the lovely flower pictures you post from time to time! I’m back on Chemo for the winter, and living away from home half of each month with my daughter and her husband and family. It’s fun to be here, and at the same time, I miss being home. But the time with all my granddaughters is a treat. Keep on posting as often as you can, BW!

    1. Carolyn, I’m glad I can brighten your day! It’s hard to be away from home, but we find blessings where we can–being with your daughter and grand daughters is one such blessing! You hang in there, and I will keep posting as often as I can to help you pass the time, my friend. BW

  2. I’ve got my few plants in a small greenhouse. I’ll plug in a 60 watt for a little extra heat the next few days. When the temps drop below 45 I turn on the light. I can’t believe your flowers are still blooming. I really like that Knock- out Rose.

  3. The geraniums are good, aren’t they? I finally got rid of mine this year. I’d rescued them from the dumpster about four years ago, and they just pooped out in the drought and such. But I’ll be getting some new ones about February, too.

    I see that wood sorrel all the time, but didn’t have a clue what it was, except “wildflower”. Glad to have the I.D.!

    1. Shore – As a child, did you ever chew on the stems of these flowers? The juice is tangy, sort of like vinegar, but appealing. And the chickens love to chem them as well. My friend, Kim, was amazed when she tasted her first Wood Sorrel stem last year at Camp Dularge! She couldn’t get enough! Right, Kim? Some people call this plant the “Shamrock” because of the leaves that have the shamrock shape. I guess the name fits!!!

      1. I saw the begonias, but did think the first photo (in the brown pot) were geraniums. I’ve got some of those with the red and green leaves – I saw the leaves and didn’t bother to look at the flowers! Ooops!

  4. I have lantana blooming here. It should have been dead in November. Also, my paper whites are so pretty too. I even noticed my thyme, oregano, mint and fall onions are going strong. I bet they are gone by Friday am though. Supposed to be in the 20s with a windchill in the teens. Brrrrr. I might try putting some buckets over them.

    Your rose is so pretty. I lost most of mine this summer.

    1. Hm. Paper whites? I better walk to the front yard of the old house and see if my Narcissus and Snow Bells survived the last fall mowing done by Termite. Thanks for reminding me. Although I think it seems a bit early for them to be out here just yet. Can you give me some tips about growing herbs in pots? Mine just seem to die and not flourish. I’m sorry that you and all your TX neighbors lost so much this summer. Truly sorry. Have you had enough rain yet?

      1. I don’t know really what I do that makes them grow other than giving them a drink daily when it is hot and a monthly dose of Miracle Grow. With all the fish heads & throw aways you could make a mean compost pile to use in your potting and gardening. I use multi-vitamins with extra calcium on my tomatos, peppers and other large plants. Once they are planted and start to grow, I shove a vitamin down in the roots and water it in. Works great and pre-natal vitamins (left from my neighbors pregnancy) worked the best. I had pepper plants that were nearly 6′ tall!

        I know pruning the herbs regularly and not letting them bloom is important and never cut more than 1/4 of the height. Some like sunlight and others like a partial shade. My herbs get sun from sunup until about 1pm and then they are in a lightly shaded spot the rest of the day. The only ones in pots are the mint and some of the onions.

        We have had a nice, wet winter so far and the yard needs mowing again. Or what now passes as a yard. Mostly weeds instead of my St. Augustine. The lantana that is blooming is purple and it was still going strong last night. Poor thing will get zapped tonight.

  5. Pretty nice. I be tying up flies and fishing and building cigar box guitars when winter rolls in this morning. First storm of year but it’ll be gone next week I think. Got a bottle of brandy and 1371 kumquats to play with too.

    Lots of time little ambition left.

  6. I believe those flowers you call geraniums are actually begonias. Mine are still blooming too, and I plan on bringing them in tonight so that they don’t freeze.

    1. Kendra, I knew I was having a “senior” moment and could not think of Begonias and hoped some nice person would have mercy on me and oh-so-gently correct me. I will now go edit. Appreciate it! BW

  7. We got our first snow last night, nothing big, just an inch maybe. The flowers are a great reminder Spring isn’t too far away! I hate snow, it interrupts basketball season. lol

  8. You’re so nice to share all this good cheer and the beautiful pictures. What kind of camera do you have? I need to get a new one. I have a shrub that has what looks like red fringe hanging all over it. Don’t know what it’s called. Baby Brooke brightens my winter days. I keep her every Friday. Son left today. Mom’s still here. I’m feeling pretty swell. Glad to know you’re doing well.

  9. Lovely photos, and all out now? Up here it’s far too dark and cold, tho I’ve got snowdrops out and tulip leaves fully up which is rather worrying this early. I’ve got a couple of sweet bay and have kept a plant around for many years. They dry wonderfully and they get used a great deal in our cookery. Sorry to hear you’ve been unwell and hope things are looking up now? Best wishes 😉

    1. Oh, Copper, welcome back! So happy you found your way back down the bayou again! That color is just so vivid! And fresh snow really is pretty! We don’t get that “cozy” down here. I’d love to have a romantic fire in a fireplace, but I don’t have one.

    1. It was not quite freezing, so the plants are hanging in there. My hibiscus is a little burnt, but that’s to be expected. Should have already trimmed them back. Maybe today. BUT this morning we had frost, so the flowers might be dead!!!!

  10. Beautiful flowers. We still have a few in Cocodrie. I am sure this cold spell will mess them up a little, but they will come back soon.
    Can’t wait for warm weather and time change!!

  11. Funny—Ms. Dularge. I have been in hibernation for the last two months. I do read but forget to email. Will catch up soon!!
    Need to warm up for me to get out of the brain fog I have been in.

  12. Ice fishing might be possible up north a ways.

    I think I’ll be resting up though.

    Puny is my new lifestyle.

    Geaux Giants.

  13. Begonias are definitely one of the easiest and most colorful plants that can be grown in the South. There are so many shades and varieties.

    Even neglected, they still prosper.

    I had some window boxes in wire window box holders on my chain link fence in 2010. They’d been planted with just plain old common begonias. This past year, I just did not do my usual repotting and flower planting and let those window boxes go fallow, still hanging on the fence.

    Imagine my surprise a couple of months ago when I spotted a white begonia peeping out from underneath the Carolina Jasmine that is growing on the fence. Blooming it’s little heart out. I’d not watered that window box or paid any attention to it, whatsoever, since the fall of 2010. We’d had some hard freezes the winter of 2010/2011, too. By all reason, that box should have been nothing but dirt.

    Plucky little thing.

  14. What happened to “19 Days Later”? I received an email on 1/14 about the new post, but it can’t be “found”.