A Sunday Stroll In The Garden: December 2014

Every Sunday afternoon, after getting home from church and having a bite of lunch, I take a stroll through the yard. It gives me a chance to take a closer look at what’s going on in the garden, something I can’t always do when I’m actually working in the garden! I decided this might make a good monthly post, showing how things change, what’s coming up or dying away, what little critters might be hanging around! So, beginning today, I’ll post pictures from my first Sunday stroll of each month. Hope you enjoy!

Bird Nest In Telephone Wires
Bird Nest In Telephone Wires

This bird nest, built precariously among some telephone wires, is easy to see right now. During the summer it was obscured by the foliage and flowers of a Trumpet Vine. The pole is actually in our neighbor’s yard, about a foot or so from our fence. I’m not certain how long this particular nest has been there, but there’s always one in the general vicinity every year.

Changing Colors Of Shumard Oak
Changing Colors Of Shumard Oak

This Shumard Oak is right beyond our patio, about midway between the house and the back fence. I love the way the leaves change color in the late fall. It’s home to quite a few birds and the squirrels love to romp in it. They make quite a racket when they jump from the tree onto the patio roof and begin scampering around!

Oak Leaves
Oak Leaves

These Shumard Oak leaves have turned a beautiful orange-brown color. They’ll probably shed completely with one more freeze.

Wasp Nest
Wasp Nest

Paper wasps built several nests under the eave of a large window that looks out into the back yard. One nest was actually attached to the window itself — and still is! — while this one was attached to the underside of the window awning. The wasps slowly dwindled away during our first few freezes and the nest itself was blown down when a cold front came through about a week ago.

Dianthus
Dianthus

I planted a few Dianthus early in the spring. They barely bloomed during the summer but seem to have found new life with the cooler weather we’ve been having. This one has been blooming for several weeks.

Powis Castle Artemisia
Powis Castle Artemisia

This Powis Castle Artemisia still looks quite good. It’ll probably get a little raggedy by the time spring comes around. I snipped a number of cuttings from it during the late summer and rooted them in water. Five of them were transplanted before the cool weather set in and they seem to be surviving quite well. Hopefully they’ll be as large as their ‘parent’ by this time next year!

Dutch Iris
Dutch Iris

I think these are Dutch Iris. They were here when we bought the house, so they’ve survived at least eighteen years of our crazy weather. During the early summer it appeared they might bloom but they just withered away due to the heat and lack of rain. Then about a month ago they started pushing through the ground . . . and there they are!

Garlic Chives Seeding
Garlic Chives Seeding

Garlic Chives have taken over several corners of the yard. These plants stay green all summer and continue to multiply wherever they find a toehold. Some are still in bloom and bearing seeds.

Winter Onions
Winter Onions

I’ve always referred to this patch of onions as Winter Onions. I very rarely harvest any and they haven’t spread in years. They’re just there. Which is fine! They grow and survive in this climate and I’m happy with that.

I wonder how much the garden will change during the next month. We’re heading into what is normally the coldest part of our winter — January and February. By the first Sunday in January things will probably be looking a bit more bare. It’ll be interesting to see what changes have taken place!

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