I hope you are all staying warm. I just returned from a ski vacation in Colorado, and I swear it is colder here than it was there…and there is almost as much snow and ice, too! Still, it is good to get back to a more normal routine and to get settled back into the house. Because of the continued winter storms, there has not been a whole lot going on in the garden, of course. However, we did manage to perform a thorough winter cleanup–cutting back the ornamental grasses, trimming the rest of the perennials that had gone dormant and getting the last few stray leaves that had fallen or blown in.
While I was gone, my team also planted these great triple standard boxwood topiaries in the urns out front. I think they are the perfect eye-catching evergreens to fill the urns until spring, and not just for curb appeal reasons. I can see them clearly from inside the large front windows, bringing the outside in during these cold months. As soon as the snow melts, I will try to think of something fun to put around the base of each topiary, as well…for a little extra interest.
When I returned from my trip, as I was walking around surveying the garden, I made an encouraging discovery: a solitary hellebore peeking up through the snow! Bursting with tight, white buds, it is a small sign that even though it is hard to see it now, spring is not too, too far away.
Seeing this little guy made me long for spring, however, and I had to have a little bit of blossom to bring indoors. So, I picked up this beautiful orchid at the supermarket.
I just love its deep garnet blossoms. It came in a rather ugly little basket, however, so I had to dressed it up a tad. First I removed the basket and placed the plant in a more decorative container I had. Then I put green moss and some neat chunks of colored glass all around the base. Finally I replaced the bamboo support stake with a maple branch I cut from the garden. The bamboo was just a little too tropical for my decor, and I thought the maroon bud clusters on the maple branch were just too perfect a companion to the orchid blooms to pass up!
The orchid should easily bloom for a month, by which time hopefully I should have some blossoms out in the garden to keep me company!
Oh, and remember the paperwhite bulbs and herbs I planted last month? Well unfortunately I missed their peak blooming display while I was away, but they did just wonderfully. And I know they smelled great, too! I hope you tried something like this for yourself. I know in this case, I planted the bulbs in an actual box…but indoor bulb gardens are really a great way to Live Outside the Box during the winter months.
One last thing before I go: while I was in Colorado, I went into an antique store, where I found this wonderful mule deer skull and antlers. I love authentic antlers and such and had been looking for something like this for a while. This animal had died a natural death, and the skull was found by a local farmer. So, I am excited to work this into my decor somehow, and that will be one of my projects for the weeks ahead. I have a couple of ideas already, and I hope you will come back nexth month to see what happens!
Happy Valentines Day!