Bloom Day, January 2015

My garden in Austin, Texas finally received its first hard freeze of this winter, so there’s not much in the way of fanciful flora to share for this first of 2015 Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day.  Thanks to Carol at May Dreams Garden for hosting this blogosphere bonanza for blooms, even if some of us in the Northern Hemisphere are a bit bloom deficient.

Four-nerve DaisyTetraneuris scaposa, requires more cold than what it’s seen to render the dancing daisies dormant for winter. This little group of hardy and pretty Texans still bloom and the flowers are available for pollinators who might stop by for a sip.

The Mutabilis Rose, Rosa ‘Mutabilis’, flowers during the cooler seasons here in Austin. Some of the open flowers, damaged by the freeze, …hang on and there are others, awaiting their time to open.

Leatherleaf Mahonia, Mahonia bealei, is a slow-growing evergreen shrub with racemes of bright yellow flowers during the winter months, which are followed by denim-blue fruits in early spring, gobbled up almost immediately by hungry birds. Tagged as an invasive species in other parts of North America, it’s not considered an invasive here in Texas. I planted my three shrubs many years ago (they’re very slow-growing).  I wish I’d planted the native Agarita, Mahonia trifoliolata, at that time, but didn’t.  I do have one Agarita, but it’s tiny and not ready for blooming, berrying, or any extolling of its virtues. I always forget that these blooms appear in the shorter and darker days of January and February–but the bees remember.

When the sun is out, so are the honeybees, working these blooms for nectar and pollen for their hives.   Unfortunately, the sun seems to be on sabbatical in recent weeks, so the bees remain warm and cozy, consuming their winter stores of honey and not visiting these blossoms.

And that’s about it for my garden!!  It’s time for the garden to rest and the gardener to prune, mulch, and prepare for the long blooming season ahead.

Please check out May Dreams Gardens for January blooms from all over the world.