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Feb 14, 2022 - At the tailend of winter

It is still cold. The dry and sharp wind reminds you that no doubt it is still winter. Our suet feeder attracts a lot of birds every day. We all need fat to resist coldness and to protect warmth. But if you stop the hurry footsteps and take a moment to look around, little changes are happening quietly.

Heavenly Bamboo - Red leafed Nandina
Heavenly Bamboo - Nandina Domestica lights up this stunning redness in our backyard garden.

The professional landscape company is always a good calendar reminder to us. Last weekend, I noticed all the crape myrtle trees in the city have been trimmed, so we did the same to ours. Compared to last year, this February seems much colder and, accordingly, the pruning happened later than last year which was in January. Those straight, smooth, and long Crape myrtle branches are perfect supporting polls for climbing plants. When we plucked out the dry leaves of the ground, fresh sprouts were right there! Our perennial plants are stretching up after a sound sleep. Phloxes, Mums, Guaras, Sedums, and Bee Balms are some of the first herbaceous to wake up.

sedum new shoots
Sedum is coming out already!

And the bulbs! Snowdrops bring out dainty white flowers. When we walk on the meadow, we need to watch our feet to avoid stepping on little pointed greens -Crocuses, tulips, and snakehead bulbs. Meanwhile, little buds are developing on all sorts of decidual trees. All these small signs made my heart flutter like a butterfly cheering for the Spring.

These daffodils appeared magically by our pond. We did not even planted them!

Not everything needs to wait for the Spring. Oriental paper bush has its white flower buds hung on branches for a couple of months. I cannot wait for it to bloom and welcome early pollinators like bumblebees to visit. Camelias have been blooming since December. Classic winter flowers such as Lenten roses also opened their purple cup-like petals. Our sweet tea olives seem to be blooming all year round. I feel grateful and content that there is always a fresh and sweet scent when we walk into our garden.

Oriental Paper Bush - not fully blooming yet

Last weekend. We looted more pallets and upgraded our compost bins. We have been using our own compost and mixing with soil conditioner, perlite, grits, and cow manure or occasionally burned wood ash to create our own soil. It feels so rewarding when comparing the original red clay to the loose and black soil that was created simply by our yard and kitchen waste. I cannot wait to build our flower bed and start the annual flower garden this year.

It seems that Robins never left this winter. There are definitely more and more of them starting this month. We are at the end of Winter. The change of daylights, daytime temperatures, humidity in the air, activities of wild animals, little sprouts appearing from underground, yellow buds on the early flowering bushes, and the bright red maple tree stems...everything is whispering to you: Spring is coming. Our garden is waking up.

tree peony
This Tree Peony is sprouting earlier than our herbaceous peonies.

Weather: 45 F, sunny and windy

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