Garden in Winter

In the garden this morning, watering again, not my usual practice in winter, I realized that I hadn’t wished you a happy holiday! It is sometimes hard in the California winters to get into the spirit of the season. It was slow in coming this year, and yet, it has so far been lovely.

Sometimes we just feel like sleeping through it all, just like a dormant plant. Watching a winter garden grow is a more challenging aspect of gardening, too. Remembering to protect the plants during frost, to water when its unusually dry like it is now, or forgetting all about it when it rains a lot and not wanting to wade through the wet to weed all pose challenges during a winter season in the garden.

I find that the frosty mornings woo me out into the garden to take photos, not to care for the plants. It’s an inspiring beauty to see the sparkle of the frost on the plants and garden furniture, as I watch the foggy covering turn to steam as the sun comes out and melts the frost on the wooden fence.

The baby plants need more care and require covering until they are 4″ high. My friend, Angela, who has the best Meyer lemons that I use in my Silky Lemon Pie and other goodies, has shown me her solution of a hand-made hoop cover. The farmer from Ledesma farm told me at the farmer’s market that he just uses a cloth above the plants to protect them from the top. That seems like an easier solution to me, so next year I plan to have some made out of the PVC pipe and old sheets that I have laying around. Maybe I’ll find a porous material that will let some of the moisture through. Not sure yet.

Looking ahead to the new year and the cooking classes we are starting brings excitement for the coming year. I hope you are taking time during this season to hibernate a bit and find the inspiration you are carrying inside of you.  Happy New Year!

frosty geranium
winter tipped strawberry leaves
frosty broccoli leaves

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