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Author Topic: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere  (Read 2603 times)

Leena

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #15 on: January 24, 2023, 10:58:06 AM »
Thank you all for the pictures from your gardens. It is interesting to read what the weather has been like in different parts of the world.
Robert, also here your storms were in the news. I am happy that now it is better over there.
Mariette, how beautiful pictures of snow crystals in plants. Your winter season with snowdrops and cyclamen looks so nice.

Here December was snowy and cold, then in early January it was mild and rainy, and last week all the snow had melted away (about 6 degrees warmer than normal), but now there is again a little snow, and temperatures seem to be doing down by the end of this week. Many times February is the coldest month here, and I hope we get more snow to protect the plants, so spring is still far away.
Leena from south of Finland

Robert

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #16 on: January 24, 2023, 06:30:38 PM »
Leena, Mariette, Stefan B. and all others,

Thank you for all the comments concerning weather and climatic observations, as well as how these variables impact regional agriculture and your gardens. I have some long-term projects concerning climate, weather and how they impact ecosystems. Over the decades, this has become an avocation (much more than a hobby, but definitely not a vocation). I found Stefan B.’s comments in the Galanthus thread. This is great. I also get to see and learn about many Galanthus species and varieties that I do not see here in our part of Northern California. [Jasmin]:  I am equally interested and concerned about climate impacts in everyone’s gardens.

Mariette,

I will have more comments concerning climate and ecosystems in the future. There is some grim news; however I think it is good to know realistically what I am up against in my garden setting. As individuals we are not helpless concerning the impacts of climate change on our gardens. Repeatedly I have observed how intact unmanaged ecosystems are extremely resilient to climatic forcing. In addition, properly managed agricultural and garden ecosystems can be extremely resilient to adverse impacts.

One last note on climate and changes that has come to my attention:

My understanding is that many in Europe are impacted by high heating costs for their greenhouses, alpine houses, etc. I highly recomend THE WINTER HARVEST HANDBOOK by Eliot Coleman, a farmer in the state of Maine, U.S.A.. In Maine he grows and harvests vegetable all year using unheated greenhouses and floating row covers. I used these methods at our farm in Placerville, and found them to be very effective, with some modifications, even with ornamental plants. I was able to successfully over-winter tender plants such as Salvia vanhouttei in unheated greenhouses even when outside temperatures fell to -13 C. Perhaps this information might prove helpful.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
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Robert

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #17 on: January 30, 2023, 06:35:10 PM »


The early Hoop-Petticoat Narcissus hybrids started to blooming on schedule around 1 January this year.



The flowers were battered by the stormy weather, however when the skies finally cleared a new set of flower buds opened. Now we have a fine display of flowers.



Symbolically for Jasmin and I, the harbinger of spring and the new season is the blossoming of Prunus mume. There is an old, mature ume tree several houses down from our Sacramento home. It is currently in full bloom and the sweet scent of the flowers fills the air. Last year I took a few cuttings from this tree and they rooted and are now potted into a container. We have no room for a mature ume in our yard, however I will turn the rooted tree into a bonsai of sorts.



Several years ago I rooted cuttings of one of the pink ume trees growing at our Placerville property. These too I will grow as bonsai to the best of my ability. At one time I had many varieties of Prunus mume growing at the Placerville property. Over the years volunteer seedlings would sprout here and there on the property. They were more of the wild type, which I appreciate greatly. I have a third ume growing as a bonsai at our Sacramento home derived from one of these seedlings. Jasmin and I have a great appreciation for Prunus mume.



I grow Narcissus papyrceus from seed. Most of the seedlings are of inferior quality, however I enjoy growing them from seed and am curious if anything different or unusual shows up. The fragrance of the flowers is divine.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #18 on: January 30, 2023, 06:39:05 PM »


Within a set of seedlings of Diplacus pictus I noticed these that have very little anthocyanin in their leaves. I will grow these separately to observe if any other unique characteristics are linked to this trait. From this line of seedlings I am selecting for a prolonged blooming cycle. The green seedlings are a pleasant surprise.



Another pleasant surprise was this seedling of Eriophyllum lanatum var. grandiflorum. This species is generally short-lived and marginally tolerant of summertime irrigation. This seedling was very prominent and will be grown on for further evaluation.



In the wild, the leaves of Ranunculus occidentalis var. occidentalis range from green to leaves with various amounts of darker markings radiating outward from the base of each leaflet.



On this second year seedling the marking are quite prominent and attractive.



Every year I grow on more Ranunculus occidentalis hybrids. Ranunculus californicus, R. canus, and R. occidentalis are all fairly closely related and can be found growing in the wild in our immediate region. These and other local native Ranunculus species provide a very large genome to draw upon and many breeding possibilities for our garden.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
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Robert

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #19 on: January 30, 2023, 06:42:08 PM »


Erythronium multiscapideum is starting to emerge from the ground. This species thrives in our garden. I grow forms from many different geographic locations in our region that have unique attributes. I also have access to the genome of other species that are native to western North America. Many of these are in various stages of development and although the progress is slow, the preliminary results are very encouraging.



Cyclamen coum is starting to look good in our garden.



Acis tingitana has bloomed for us in the past, however its performance in the garden this season is outstanding. Trials in other parts of the garden will be conducted to evaluate its overall qualities in different situations.



It is pruning season. I am spending a great deal of time pruning the orchard at our Placerville property as well as the fruit trees and ornamentals at our Sacramento home.



The native rock fern, Pentagramma triangularis, can be found growing on our Placerville property. It enjoys growing in summer-dry shady areas among rocks.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Robert

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #20 on: January 30, 2023, 06:43:50 PM »


This row of peaches shares space with various species of Lavandula and Ferula.



This mature Granny Smith Apple has been pruned and is ready for another season of production.

[Jasmin]:  Now that the major storms are past, I am preparing for our next garden project:  The planting of Aristolochia!  This project began with my preparation of project flags to mark the areas.  The utilities companies will come out, and mark where their service lines are for electrical, natural gas, water, and so forth, so we know where we can dig, how deep, and close to avoid hitting any of these lines.  We have the frames the Aristolochia will grow on, cinder blocks to plant with dry shade loving plants, and have begun obtaining the posts to secure the framework for the Aristolochia.  I am so excited!  We also have huge piles of gorgeous rocks up at the Placerville farm we can bring down here to incorporate.  All these rocks were dug up over the years as vegetable beds were carved out of the hillside.  Many rocks formed the supporting walls for the vegetable beds; however, my precious husband Robert has dug a number of veritable mounds.  Now we can transform both places with these rocks!  What a treasure!  Stay tuned as we embark on the next garden adventure!


Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

ian mcdonald

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #21 on: January 30, 2023, 10:22:49 PM »
Jasmin, interesting that you mention rocks. I have been trying to obtain rocks to make a rock garden at my new home. There are two quarries close by but it seems they are not interested in supplying the general public with material.

Gabriela

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #22 on: January 31, 2023, 07:28:30 PM »
A short report from SW Ontario for the month of January, coming to an end today. It was a mainly a 'green' January here, meaning little snow, so we got to enjoy the Helleborus, Epimediums, the cushion plants in the rockery and so on. Some rain, a bit of snow and not too cold.
Last week it started to snow and all is white today with -10C day temperature and plunging. We'll see what February brings...the days are getting longer and the indoor sowing starts soon :)



Glaucium aurantiacum








Gabriela
Ontario, zone 5
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Yann

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #23 on: January 31, 2023, 08:05:57 PM »
Well here no snow but a lot plants feel the spring coming (or their owner....).

Mandragora officinarum, i grow in long pots that i put in the garden's soil.

710019-0
North of France

Robert

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #24 on: February 01, 2023, 05:59:29 PM »
Gabriela,

The scenes of snow cover are captivating. Thank you for sharing them.

In your region, is it common to have little or no snow cover during the month of January? This seems alarming, but I do not know much about the climatic conditions in your region. The plants pictured from your garden seem unharmed by the lack of snow cover. The silvery foliage of Glaucium aurantiacum is particularly attractive. Lack of snow cover during the winter in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California can create very stressful conditions for the native plants especially if temperatures are extremely cold and there are strong dry winds.
Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Leena

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #25 on: February 02, 2023, 10:33:14 AM »
Acis tingitana has bloomed for us in the past, however its performance in the garden this season is outstanding. Trials in other parts of the garden will be conducted to evaluate its overall qualities in different situations.

This is wonderful looking plant! No doubt too tender to grow here, but looks beautiful in your picture. I also enjoyed your pictures of fruit trees. :) You have big peach trees!

Gabriela,
it is nice being able to enjoy foliage even in the winter, though it is good that you got snow for protection.
I love dark winter colour of Hepatica acutiloba, it is the same here with them.

Here while December was cold and snowy, January was about 5 degrees Celsius warmer than normal, and all the snow melted from southwestern Finland. So there is almost no snow now in my garden, but ground is still frozen. Temperatures are not very bad, between 0 --10C, and even sometimes above zero. Early snowdrops are showing noses, but their development is very very slow, and I expect to see first flowers in March at the earliest, that is if weather keeps being warmer than normal.
Leena from south of Finland

Gabriela

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #26 on: February 02, 2023, 08:36:19 PM »
Gabriela,

The scenes of snow cover are captivating. Thank you for sharing them.

In your region, is it common to have little or no snow cover during the month of January? This seems alarming, but I do not know much about the climatic conditions in your region. The plants pictured from your garden seem unharmed by the lack of snow cover. The silvery foliage of Glaucium aurantiacum is particularly attractive. Lack of snow cover during the winter in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California can create very stressful conditions for the native plants especially if temperatures are extremely cold and there are strong dry winds.

Thank you Robert.
There are variations from one year to another, but usually in January we have snow on and off (same goes for February, March and April on occasions). Sometimes, for example last year, the snow cover remained consistent from January to mid March.

In this regards, your beautiful garden scenes, would be common here in late March-April, at the best.

This January (and December) has been a bit warmer than usual and with less snow, until few days ago. Instead of snow we got rain a few times. Next week it's getting warmer again...but there is still a long way till spring here.

The native plants, and many others, especially the ones dormant are adapted and will do OK even without snow cover for a certain period of time. The most that suffer are the broadleaves and the evergreens which will get desiccated. Luckily the Helleborus, Epimedium, Hepatica foliage will be cut back anyway in the spring.
Plus, I am trying to have a layer of leaves on top of the garden beds in the fall, just for these periods without snow.

Native species speaking, we don't have many species that retain their foliage over the winter in this region - perennials and shrubs speaking. There is a reason for it :)

Gabriela
Ontario, zone 5
http://botanicallyinclined.org/

Gabriela

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #27 on: February 02, 2023, 08:38:22 PM »
This is wonderful looking plant! No doubt too tender to grow here, but looks beautiful in your picture. I also enjoyed your pictures of fruit trees. :) You have big peach trees!

Gabriela,
it is nice being able to enjoy foliage even in the winter, though it is good that you got snow for protection.
I love dark winter colour of Hepatica acutiloba, it is the same here with them.

Here while December was cold and snowy, January was about 5 degrees Celsius warmer than normal, and all the snow melted from southwestern Finland. So there is almost no snow now in my garden, but ground is still frozen. Temperatures are not very bad, between 0 --10C, and even sometimes above zero. Early snowdrops are showing noses, but their development is very very slow, and I expect to see first flowers in March at the earliest, that is if weather keeps being warmer than normal.

We also got some snow in December Leena, actually we had a bit for Christmas which was nice. Same like in your region, the temp. were not too bad for the winter, only a few times it got below -10C.
This time, we are expecting -20 something tomorrow. But it won't last, it will be getting warmer again next week.

I hope it will remain reasonable cold, snow or no snow. It is better for the plants, otherwise some want to start growing too soon and we know what happens. The real spring is far away for us. 
« Last Edit: February 02, 2023, 08:42:59 PM by Gabriela »
Gabriela
Ontario, zone 5
http://botanicallyinclined.org/

Robert

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #28 on: February 03, 2023, 06:37:46 PM »
Gabriela,

Thank you for all the information regarding your local weather conditions over the past month, and generalized information concerning how plants, both native and cultivated, respond to snow cover, or the lack of it, in your region.

For me at least, gardening is an ever-evolving process. I find the experiences of gardeners under a whole variety of differing climatic, and other cultural situations very fascinating and often enlightening. Frequent summertime temperatures in the 43 C to 46 C range might be our new gardening reality in our part of Northern California. Observations of how different plant species respond to different climatic situations are often surprising. They can offer possibilities and clues into how to proceed in my own gardening environment.

Leena,

As per the comments above, this is how Acis tingitana may be evolving in our gardening scheme. The genus Galanthus might have limited possibilities in our climate, however the use of Acis tingitana and other Acis species might be an alternative method of achieving the same “look” as Galanthus or fill an early blooming niche in our garden. I will have to experiment with these and other plants such as Calochortus (many are native and thrive in our part of California) to see how this might all work out.

Another method I pursue is empirical research into the genomes of various species that I like to cultivate. Many species have very large geographical and climatic ranges in which they live. There is often a great scope of adaptability within a species with many characteristics that might extend its cultivation range or usefulness in a garden situation. I agree, Acis tingitana is not a likely candidate for your garden in Finland; however sometimes there are surprises. This is partly why I enjoy reading about gardening experiences on this forum. Our garden here in California has certainly benefited from all the information and experiences shared.

[Jasmin]:  The utilities have completed marking their pipeline locations.  We may adjust certain placements so that if there is any need for the companies to work in those zones, they can do so without disturbing anything.  Legally, they are bound to completely restore anything impacted by their work; however, we all know that is impossible when it comes to various garden projects—it is doubtful anyone in these companies would even know what some of the plants are!  This project is not some simple trellis or pathway, some grass and ordinary, commonplace plants found in everyone’s yard.  This is not some bragging point, rather, the reality of the situation.  This project is just a building upon and an elaboration of everything we have been doing in the garden.  What happens after we are dead and gone is in the hands of God.

In this neighborhood, there were gardens worthy of preservation—traditional Japanese gardens with elaborate rockery, koi pools, and gorgeously groomed Japanese maples and other associated plants; yet, when their owners died, no family members retained the properties, and subsequently the properties sold to those who tore out absolutely everything and installed lawn.  As the locations kept being sold, and the drought-conscious moved into some of the places, lawn was basically shaved out, destroying tree roots, and uniform colored rocks and some river rocks laid down like blankets over the whole.  Too often, trees were not even provided irrigation, and weakened with root damage and lack of water.  Shallow-rooted trees that did survive usually had roots over at a neighbor’s lawn.  Our own garden contends with tree roots invading for this reason.  Deeper-rooted trees somehow managed to linger; yet, the strong storms we had were their literal downfall.  It is a miracle not more fell.  One of the utilities employees told me how some of these trees of 40-50 years age not only tore out electrical power lines, but also all the natural gas pipes.

It is disconcerting, perhaps humbling, to think of our gardens as ephemeral art, for our own narcissism, ego, and/or pleasure, rather than the masterpieces and spiritual solace we believe and feel them to be.  This will not stop us from creating the most beautiful garden we can envision; it just reminds me to savor the garden more deeply, because it is so fragile and subject to so many whims, not just the whims of nature.

Robert Barnard
Sacramento & Placerville, Northern California, U.S.A.
All text and photos © Robert Barnard

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him stepto the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
- Henry David Thoreau

Leena

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Re: January 2023 in the Northern Hemisphere
« Reply #29 on: February 03, 2023, 07:09:41 PM »
Plus, I am trying to have a layer of leaves on top of the garden beds in the fall, just for these periods without snow.

I do just the same for the same reason, and I think it helps. :)

As per the comments above, this is how Acis tingitana may be evolving in our gardening scheme. The genus Galanthus might have limited possibilities in our climate, however the use of Acis tingitana and other Acis species might be an alternative method of achieving the same “look” as Galanthus or fill an early blooming niche in our garden. I will have to experiment with these and other plants such as Calochortus (many are native and thrive in our part of California) to see how this might all work out.

It did remind me of snowdrops, and it was even more beautiful than many snowdrops. :)

[Jasmin]:
It is disconcerting, perhaps humbling, to think of our gardens as ephemeral art, for our own narcissism, ego, and/or pleasure, rather than the masterpieces and spiritual solace we believe and feel them to be.  This will not stop us from creating the most beautiful garden we can envision; it just reminds me to savor the garden more deeply, because it is so fragile and subject to so many whims, not just the whims of nature.

I keep reading this over and over, and really this is true! Thank you for putting it to words.
Leena from south of Finland

 


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