Welcome to my zone 9 garden. My roots are deeply planted in the sandy soil of sub-tropical central Florida, where the summers are long and hot, but the rest of the year is paradise!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

My Favorites....this Month!

Since we had an early cold snap, my favorite flowers in the December garden are the ones that survived the frosty breath of Old Man Winter. And, these cold-hardy flowers are definitely bringing a ray of sunshine to my frostbitten yard. From left to right: pansies, cassia (can you believe they survived the frost?), ornamental kale, Sparkling Burgundy camellia and Gerbera daisy (notice the odd shape center).


But, what's really catching my eye this month is the colorful tree foliage. The sweetgums and maples are astonishing! So much so, that I couldn't stop admiring them and snapping picture after picture. Generally, our leaves will fall before cold weather arrives...never having the chance to turn a brilliant color. Needless to say, I'm thoroughly enjoying the autumn color in early winter.

Feast your eyes on these beauties!
Maples, Sweetgums and Cypress

Simple Holiday Pleasures

Baking sweet holiday treats for my family.

A few quiet moments to enjoy the treats with a good steaming cup of java!

I hope your holidays were filled with joy and laughter, plenty of good food, and sweet family memories.

It's been an interesting gardening year as we experienced one of our worst winters, followed by a dry summer, and now ending with a colder than normal December. Who knows what surprises January and February have in store for us. Here's a look back at all my favorites in 2010.

Happy New "Gardening" Year Everyone!

8 comments:

FlowerLady said...

Love the pictures of your blooms that survived frosty weather, and your tree foliage is wonderful.

Your homemade sweets with a cup of java look very inviting.

Have a wonderful new year filled with lots of love, laughter and flowers.

FlowerLady

Ami said...

Dear Susan: I also noticed those beautiful fall color on our neighbourhood trees, so pretty and hard to miss. Enjoy your time with your family. Those sweet treats and the steaming cup of java are what i would love to have right now! :)

Happy New Year!

Floridagirl said...

Oh my, your post made me remember that I didn't photograph the Gerbera daisies this morning. It is so amazing that such a warm-looking bloom has staying power through so many frosts!

I agree...the fall color was phenomenal this December. Cypresses and red maples are two of my favorite natives and are very common around here. By the way, did you catch the show in the Target parking lot on Harden Blvd.? Wow! I think those were Shumard Red Oaks, but I'm not sure. I don't get up that way too often, but we were there a couple weeks ago, and I could've sworn we were way up north somewhere.

Happy New Gardening Year to you!

Susan said...

Hi Flowerlady...After last week's 3 days of freezing temps...there aren't too many flowers left blooming for now. Oh well, they will return eventually. Best wishes to you, too.

Ami...I do wish we could have this much color each fall, but without the freezing temps.

FloridaGirl...I am surprised by the gerbera daisies, too. I didn't realize they were so cold-hardy. I need to check and see if they are on the cold-hardy list. Yes, I have been admiring the color at Target. I think you're right on the variety. They are really stunning!

NanaK said...

All that leaf color is gorgeous! I have been noticing the trees all over town. I've never noticed this much color ever before. Having those lovely trees in your yard must make looking outside a joy. I better get on the beam with posting my December favorites!

Eliza @ Appalachian Feet said...

That tree foliage is still so pretty, and I can't believe all those blooms when it is nearly January!

Your Christmas senna or orchids post would be a great addition to the next issue of How to Find Great Plants. The deadline is soon on December 31st, but if you're interested this link explains how to enter:

http://www.appalachianfeet.com/how-to-find-great-plants/

Meems said...

Susan,
Your bloomers are keeping some brilliant colors in your winter garden. And I have LOVED seeing all the colorful tree foliage around central Florida. The cypress trees are causing much gawking from me.

Your treats look yummy and inviting, too. [note to self: must stop eating treats now].

No telling what January and February will bring. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for mild. :-)

Happy New Year. Meems

Rainforest Gardener said...

Those really are great choices, and I really need to jump on the task of listing my own favorites this month. I've come around to trying out winter annuals and admit that allyssum, petunias, collards and violas are really helping to make the entry look inviting in the absence of bananas and firebush. You've shared many pretty photos but I love your stock photography quality cookie photo most of all!

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