Welcome to the Enclosed Garden of Susan Ernst. Literal as well as figurative, this blog explores the physical gardens which I cultivate, the spiritual garden within, and the intellectual garden of horticultural knowledge gathered through decades of study, observation and practice. Come and sit with me for a while. Let us together marvel at the delicate, intricate beauty of a flower.
Caught in the "artic vortex" like a large part of the country, I don't want to be outside longer than I have to. Right now it is 11 degrees Fahrenheit but the sun is brightly shining! Second day in a row now, thank God. It had been snowing, cloudy and raining the past week. I was experiencing the winter blues and cabin fever. Having sunshine back has helped a lot.
I came across this posted on Pinterest yesterday. It is so true!!
I like to tell myself that winter in New England is a great time to take care of all the indoor chores and projects that get ignored during the warmer months. I just can't get as excited about that as I can about planting seeds in the spring, watering all summer and harvesting in the fall.
I am blessed to have a wonderful view outside the back windows of our house. It is therapy to watch the many birds that come to my feeders, visit the wild berries growing in the woods or that stop in for a visit to the pond.
“So simple, so humble, yet so brave. It comes before
the crocus dares. I love the snowdrop, the first of all flowers, the harbinger
of spring. God’s New Year’s gift to the earth, …”
- Francis Kilvert (1840-1879), clergyman
Snowdrops are one of the earliest flowers of the year to
bloom, so early in fact that they often get covered with snow. The botanical
name, Galanthus nivalis, comes from Greek and Latin. Gala means “milk”, anthos
means “flower”. Nivalis means “snowy”.Galanthus will bloom anywhere from January to March, depending on the
climate and weather conditions. In the Language of Flowers, the Snowdrop
represents hope and consolation and says “Let us wait for better days!”If these flowers are in bloom, spring can’t
be too far off!
A native flower of Britain, it is the English flower emblem
for January. It can be found growing wild in England in open woodlands and in
hedgerows.The plant grows three to four
inches tall. The nodding white flower is made up of three inner petals which
are tinged with green and three longer outer petals that open out like a
ballerina’s tutu. The outer petals are also said to resemble angel’s wings with
the green base of the flower serving as the head and the inner petals as the
body.The leaves of Galanthus resemble
grass blades in shape and color.
Snowdrops grow best in partial shade and moist, well drained
soil. They look wonderful naturalized in the lawn, at the base of trees and
shrubs or in the garden. Buy bulbs in autumn and plant them two to three inches
deep and two to four inches apart. Since they bloom when the weather is cold,
be sure to plant them in an area that can be seen from a window or along a
walkway to your house.
So long as the ground isn’t frozen, the plants can be dug up
when flowers begin to bloom, put in pots and brought inside. Once the flowers
fade, the plants can be tucked back into the soil.
If you do not have any snowdrops to bring inside this
winter, you can try your hand at making paper flowers by following this simple
tutorial found in the beautiful British magazine, LandScape.