The day is raw and damp, my breath hangs momentarily on the cold air as I walk. The early morning mist has lifted leaving a thousand drops of glistening moisture on the large cobwebs by the gate to the orchard. I step back onto the patio and pause to take in the vista, the garden reveals its failing with the cruel frankness of the month. Room for improvement I think as I glance quickly around.
Enough of this, all is not lost. Across the lawn the twigs of Acer palmatum ‘Sonkaki’ are clearly visible, a coral red glow that appears almost immature in the grey morning light, a warmth echoed by the thicket of crimson stemmed dogwood, Cornus alba ‘Siberica’.
In another corner the rich yellow shoots of Salix alba ‘Vitellina’ vie for space with the overgrown, white waxy stems of Rubus cockburnianus long overdue pruning needed here.
Stag’s horn sumach ‘Rhustyphina’ stripped of its autumn leaves has a velvety coating to its twigs, demanding to be touched.
The evergreens now find themselves centre stage Juniperus Virginiana ‘Sky Rocket’, a pillar of blue-grey, contrasts with the low prickly bronze spread of Juniperuscommunis ‘Depressa Aurea’.
The tall Deodora looks majestic, sheltering the spring crocus, snowdrops and Arum Italicum Pictum under its boughs.
On a cold damp February morning these shapes and colours are best appreciated from indoors—so open your eyes and think of spring…. winter is soon away.