Flowers In January?

This winter’s warm spells have fooled some plants into blooming early. I have seen Flowering Quince and ornamental Plum in full bloom as well as vining Carolina Jessamine (I decorated the table with those flowers for New Year’s Day). And some types of bulbs are pushing their way up into the sunlight. The plants that have been fooled into blooming will use up the buds they set earlier and may bloom sparsely in the spring, if at all. Hopefully they will not be harmed by recurring cold spells and will go back into dormancy.

Do not worry at all about the daffodils! They have what amounts to plant anti-freeze coursing through their leaves and will outlive the weather no matter what comes our way.

That being said, enjoy the flowers! Pick them to bring inside, and perhaps plan on extra annuals in the spring to brighten up beds that may be a little lacking in color when the weather warms.

Other plants blooming appropriately now include the beautiful Winter Jasmine with its green stems and sunny yellow flowers, Winter Honeysuckle and Mahonia with their wonderful fragrances, and Stinking Hellebores (not such a lovely fragrance when crushed, but really nice green flowers with burgundy rims). I have also seen some orange ‘Jelena’ Witch Hazel flowers peeking out of their buds only to curl back up when things get cold again.

January is a great time of year to show off the bones of your garden. The hardscaping is totally evident now because the leaves and perennials have gone to the compost bin. Take a look at your yard and make note of any empty spots or changes that you want to make this year.

And please contact me if you need any gardening advice!

Happy New Year!