02 January 2014

Happy New (Knee) Year!

Suddenly, it's 2014. A new year, a new month, an (almost new) season...of winter. In the past three weeks, we have had an amazing number of storms throughout Atlantic Canada, with records amount of freezing rain, snow, subzero temperatures, power outage...some poor souls in New Brunswick are into day 10, I believe, since losing their power, with another storm forecast for tonight and tomorrow. 

There is, however, a pristine beauty to the natural world, although a week plus of ice on trees and shrubs isn't likely doing them a lot of good. 

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas season. Ours was fairly quiet, as I am recuperating from my second knee replacement surgery, just over 3 weeks ago. We were out on Christmas day to visit friends in Berwick, and that's as far as I have been since getting home from the hospital. With this much snow and ice around, it's just safer to stay inside, do my exercises, rest and get stronger, and wait for better weather days. 
 And play with houseplants! This is the time of year for indoor bulbs to begin to shine, from the paperwhites that are so beautiful (though to many, far too fragrant) to the unscented but gorgeous amaryllis like 'Dancing Queen'.

 The hyacinths I forced in glasses since November are now pushing forth their blooms. I love the scent of hyacinths, which aren't as cloying as paperwhites, but because of the way my home is laid out, the scent disperses nicely throughout and isn't overwhelming at all.
I cannot resist the cheerful colour of these forced narcissus, and I don't find them too fragrant, either. I would have daffs and narcissus in the house every day until spring if I could. Which reminds me...I never did get all the bulbs planted, and it looks now like I won't! I suppose I could send my son out for a bag of potting mixture, plant them in containers and force them...

 The other day I shared this photo of this variegated African violet on my FB page, and someone was asking how I got them to look so good. My answer: they thrive on benign neglect. I actually forgot to water the dear little things for weeks at a time in the autumn, and that seemed to have jolted them into  survival mode: "Oh dear, she's trying to kill us...we had better flower and create seed so we survive..."  This is the first time the variegation in the foliage has been so pink-tinted instead of just cream, but I love it--the plant doesn't even have to flower, but this one is, and it's an added bonus.
The last of the outdoor plants, the flowering kale, is still sheathed in a glistening coat of ice, making it into a pop art display. Or it was before the most recent snowfall--it's now buried, like everything else in the garden, but that's okay. We need a season off from the garden outside, and now we are into the fourth garden season, where we plan for next year, review last year, enjoy our houseplants, catch up on our reading! 

That's it for this week, friends. Now that I'm able to sit at my computer for more than a few minutes at a time, I'm slowly getting back to work, and to writing blog posts. I appreciated all the comments and discussion on my previous post about blogging, and will be continuing for the foreseeable future, anyway, although I am almost at the point of shutting down bloominganswers.com. We are all so busy, and have maybe too many sites to visit and participate in, and while this served a purpose at first, I don't have a lot of time to spend on it, and unless I do, few others bother. We'll see what the coming weeks bring! 

Happy New Year to all of you! Any garden resolutions? 


  1. Good read. Thanks for the update. I was looking at my ice encased shrubs and wondering if they are all ok under there.

  2. Happy New Year, Jodi, and congratulations on your new knees. You are so going to enjoy them in spring when you can get out and enjoy the garden. -Jean

  3. You are having surreal ice storms while we are sweltering in the hottest summer on the continent in recorded history! Is it global warming or a deep freeze that we are heading for?
    I do hope the trees and shrubs stay firm under that heavy weight.
    It looks like we will all have to be more resilient as the weather gods wreak their anger upon us.

    Wishing you a safe and happy year!

  4. Beautiful blooms, most appreciated amongst the snow and ice. Brrr, this has been some winter. I am glad to hear your knee is working well. Hang in there. You will hit the ground running this spring. I haven't even started my garden journal for this year. I am way behind. ha... At least that is how I feel.

  5. Happy 2014! Your ice-sculpture plant is delightful. Hope your bionic knees will be all-powerful come the spring. I'll go and read your post about blogging now. As for reading blogs - I read many fewer than I used to; partly because of time, partly because of decreasing interest (they almost inevitably become repetitive) partly because they have proliferated, partly due to the demise of blotanical. Best wishes. (I'll try to visit more often!) Esther

  6. Wonderful to hear the second surgery went well. This is a good time to sit indoors and relax so you might as well enjoy the respite. Take care and best wishes to you in the new year.

  7. Good luck with those new knees, you are wise to keep them inside and safe, away from the ice and snow. Rest and be well, and this summer you should be ready for more!

  8. Absolutely love the frozen kale -- it looks like an ice cream treat. :). All the best for the new year.

  9. Beautiful pictures! I so enjoyed them all. Good luck with your continued healing of your knee.

  10. The kale looks so beautiful encased in ice! We had such bitter cold in early December that mine gave up for good. Glad to hear you are doing so well with your knee replacement. Everyone I know who's had it done has said it's miserable at first, but so worth it in the end. Definitely stay off that treacherous ice and rest up!


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