November 24, 2015

Snowy Garden

This morning we awoke to several inches of snow, and I caught a few photos before my children trampled it to mush.  At center above is the dwarf Arctic willow, whose lines are so pretty in winter.

Here is the same area from the other direction.  Substance is provided by evergreen boxwoods, lavender shrubs and deciduous butterfly bushes whose leave haven't fallen yet.

The sitting area at the Northwest arbor doesn't look very inviting right now.  Brrr!

The three contorted filberts (two green, one red-leaved) all look great in the snow.  This one has been in the ground for three growing seasons and hasn't gained much size, but maybe next year it will finally leap.

The honeysuckle on the swing set holds the snow beautifully, while the surrounding honey locust trees show off their elegant winter form.  This is just the sweet corner, eh?

The butterfly bushes leaf out late in spring, but they've held onto their leaves longer than any of the other deciduous shrubs.  In the spring I'll cut them down nearly to the ground to keep them dwarf.

Sadly, the view in the front yard is a little different after the big wind storm (up to 70 mph gusts) last week.  There should be a blue spruce in the background of this photo, but look what happened to it . . .

The spruce tree kept leaning farther toward our porch with each monumental gust of wind, so with the neighbors' encouragement, my husband tied a rope from the tree to his truck and pulled it over in the other direction.  It popped off at the base and has since been cut up and carried away.

Even if the tree had fallen, the damage would have been minimal compared to what many in Spokane experienced.  Hundreds of trees fell and many hit houses, cars, and even people.  Fences blew over, shingles flew away, and I watched a neighbor's metal shed somersault over their fence.  Power is still out in many areas.  This was the one time I was glad to live in a young neighborhood without mature trees.  Of course the damage would have been even worse a month ago when the deciduous trees had their leaves.  As it was, the toppled trees were mostly evergreens.  But on the bright side, many of us here are feeling sincerely grateful for blessings we often took for granted before, which is perfect for Thanksgiving week.
I am going to take a break from blogging until the new year, so I wish you happy holidays!


  1. I thought about you when I heard about that big storm in Spokane. I'm glad that the only damage was to your blue spruce and that you were able to take it down in a controlled way. We had our first dusting of snow this week, but nothing as dramatic as what you have. You've done a great job of creating a garden with beautiful winter bones. -Jean

  2. Ouch, so sorry about your Blue Spruce, how unfortunate. Glad to hear you didn't suffer power outages (my parents were spared too but many friends weren't so lucky). And wow, you really know how to make snow look desirable! Beautiful photos!

  3. Lovely photos. A shame about the spruce. I've lost pines (3) and a beautiful yoshino cherry to wind and ice.

  4. I know it's a pain in the neck to live with, but from this distance I found myself scrolling through your pictures and saying "just lovely." I actually think your seating area seems very inviting. I can imagine myself tip-toeing there and looking at the garden, bundled up and with a steaming mug of tea to warm my hands. Enjoy your break!

  5. Hi VW,

    Sorry but not sorry to see you have snow already as it is very beautiful - isn't the first snow always?
    I'm hoping we don't get any this year... I grew up with it as a rarity but over the past few years it's become a given every year and I don't like that (unless it falls on a weekend and is gone by Monday). I have my wellies (i think they're called rain boots in the us) and ice grips ready if we do get any.

    Sorry to see the large tree had to go; perhaps wind is the only time I'm glad i don't have any large trees. Although very heavy, wet snow earlier this year did uproot one of the willows. Not an issue though, we coppiced it and it's already produced dozens new branches which will also need chopping.

    Have a lovely break, and i look forward to spring posts soon!!


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