In a vase on Monday – A freezing January 2019

The welcome to the New Year in Italy has involved snow, wind and freezing temperatures; not really auspicious for a vase of flowers picked from the garden to join with Cathy at Rambling in the garden.

We returned late yesterday from a few days bird watching in the Gargano, Puglia.  For several weeks the forecast had been that there would be freezing winds from Siberia with a strong possibility of snow.  We chose the route that would avoid crossing any of the mountains that would likely have closed passes and crossed our fingers that we would arrive before the worst of the weather.  We did encounter some snow, but not enough to cause concern and it wasn’t settling on the road.  Our first appointment was at the port of Manfredonia.  It was sunny as we arrived but soon the dark snow-filled clouds surrounded us and icy snow and sleet drove us to find a warm bar for a hot drink to warm us.   The temperatures in Viterbo were lower than Puglia for all the time we were away but there wasn’t any snow.

This morning I knew it would be difficult to find any flowers; the ground was hard and white and it looked as if the frost hadn’t thawed on the ground for several days.  Before I left Rosa Old Blush had been full of buds and open flowers but they really didn’t look happy this morning so I knew I would have to resort to the stalwarts of the evergreen shrubs – Prostrate Rosemary, Elaeagnus and Viburnum tinus all providing lovely foliage and the bonus of flowers too.

In a vase on Monday, January 7th 2019

A short bonus stem in a Campari bottle makes the arrangement seem more considered.

Viburnum tinus – a few open buds

I know many people find Viburnum tinus boring but for me any plant that flowers in winter and needs no summer irrigation, once established, is very much appreciated.

The sweet perfume of Elaeagnus will scent the room

The Elaeagnus has been flowering for a couple of months already.  I love it that the flowers are insignificant but that the perfume is unmissable.

Viburnum tinus, tightly closed pink buds and Prostrate rosemary which has also been flowering for several months

In a vase on Monday, January 7th 2019

The heavy based, square glass vase has pebbles in the base to support the stems.

I hope it is warmer where you are and that you are able to enjoy a few hours in your gardens this week.

The Canna in last week’s vase is still blooming but the Iris only lasted two days.

33 thoughts on “In a vase on Monday – A freezing January 2019

  1. Lovely gentle colours in your vase Christina! It all looks very happy sitting there in Italian January sunshine! I am rather envious! I used to have a prostrate rosemary, a long time ago. The ordinary rosemary I have now is blooming away. Might have to snaffle a bit of it for next week’s vase – there is very little else to pick at the moment! Amanda

    • In the UK, Viburnum ti us flowers for about 6 to8 months of the year, is evergreen and produces berries, here it flowers for a shorter period. In the UK it is used a lot in municipal planting because it is so easy so some gardeners are a little sniffy about it. I love plants that are easy, especially if they don’t need summer irrigation. A very Happy 2019 to you you Linda.

  2. Despite the cold, you still have a creative vase. We are experiencing spring-like weather on the Texas Gulf Coast and I noticed many plants starting their spring growth. Hopefully, we will not get any hard freezes this year.

    • We had quite a few nights of frost even before Christmas which is unusual here. I think we might be in for another very cold winter. It seems that climate change will make our winters much colder because of the Atlantic warming up and changing the balance of things.

  3. Glad you have missed any snow (so far) and hope you can still get outin your garden despite the snow. We have jad a milder few days here but could have another night’s frost mid-week. I agree with you about the viburnum and yours makes a big contribution to your vase. I have never grown eleagnus but you have made it sound appealing so perhaps it is something I could consider for a gap in my shrub border, although I suspect it might grow too tall. What a useful plant rosemary is – do you use this prostrate version in your cookery too?

  4. Despite the freezing temperatures, your garden has provided lovely and fragrant vase contents. Nicely done as always.

    • I really wasn’t very hopeful when I went outside to pick for my vase today Peter. The ground was white with frost and looked as if it had been that way for a very days.

  5. I’m always rather rude about Viburnum tinus beacause there were so many in this garden and they are fiendish to dig up and they smell horrible when wet. But I agree they are great for winter vases. Your lovely pink buds look wonderful. I never thought I would buy one after digging so many up, but yesterday I bought Viburnum tinus ‘Lisarose’. It has very deep pink buds and pale pink flowers.
    We are going to the Gargano peninsula in April, I have read that the wild flowers are beautiful. I hope it warms up a bit.

    • The Gargano is famous for its wild flowers. I know that there are some orchids that grow there and nowhere else. I was rather cross that Richard wanted to go birdwatching at the beginning of January because if we’d gone later in spring I would have been able to look at the flowers while he looked at the birds, as it was I spent a lot of time in the car reading.

  6. I seem to be admiring Viburnum quite frequently of late, a sure sign that I should find a place to plant one of these shrubs here. It’s cold here too (51F/10C today) but we’re nowhere near freezing, even overnight, so I don’t have that challenge to contend with. Are we going to see photos from your birding trip?

  7. Christina I am glad that you are at home safe and sound despite the snow and the cold during the trip. I know that the extreme cold continues in your garden: keep warm. Your vase is magnificent, I love it. The flowers of Viburnum tinus are a beauty and the color is charming. The Prostate Rosemary I like very much as the Elaegnus with its perfume that floods everything and how beautiful it is. It is a divine vase with shrubs. I hope the weather improves, while you warm up well. Take care. Here in Spain at night record minimum temperatures are being reached, freezing even on the beaches. In the valleys of the great rivers the fog is throughout the day and does not exceed the positive 1º or 2ºC. This week it will get colder but it will start to snow in the north and also in the north. Let’s see if it rains because we need it. Greetings from Margarita.

    • We are promised more very cold weather this week and snow here ne t week. I don’t mind the cold if it is sunny and at least the shortest day has pasted now. You keep warm too Margarita.

  8. Love the evergreens and restrained color palette. I am guessing the Viburnum is the car park screening plant of the UK? What’s not to love about that? December and January are the best bird watching months here, I am amazed at what goes by.

  9. Not too many flowers here, but buds and new foliage coming. I am picking a vase of twigs that I hope will unfold indoors. Iris and tulips and daffodils coming through the ground, waiting for snow?

  10. I love your winter vase! The viburnum and rosemary are great companions. We have had a couple of warm, sunny days, and I was able to get out in the garden to pull some weeds. But now we are headed back to subfreezing winter. I am looking forward to spring!

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