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Monday, January 7, 2013

"another year over AND a new one just begun . . . " PART TWO-A (January — March 2012)

Happy first full week (ALMOST) of the 2013 year and with that salutation I welcome you to part two (portion A) of my post titled "another year over AND a new one just begun . . . "  

Since tomorrow is January the eighth, which means  the first week of the calendar new year will already be passing, it's high time I complete my garden's year-end review for 2012-2013, as promised in part one of this posting!

And, as I stated in part one, part two will be a quick look back pictorially over the "breaking news" of a given month in my garden from January 5, 2012 through January 5, 2013. However, part two will take place over thirten days, which will include today, where I will cover the events for the months of January-March of 2012; tomorrow, the eighth, where I will cover the events for the month of April 2012; Wednesday, the ninth when I'll cover the events of May 2012; Thursday the tenth when I will cover the events of June of 2012; Friday the eleventh, when I'll cover the events of July 2012; and, Saturday, the twelfth when I will cover the events of August 2012. 

Because the year 2012 brought with it a number of major garden upheavals, including a so-called renovation in September, Hurricane Sandy as well as a nor'easter in October, I will divide the review for those months and cover them over two — three days per month.

On Sunday, January the thirteenth, I will cover the events of September 2012 which occurred between September 1st and September 11th of 2012; then on Monday, January 14th, I'll cover the events from September 12th to September 19th of 2012; and I'll conclude September 2012' s coverage on Tuesday, January the sixteenth.

Then on Wednesday, January the sixteenth, I will cover October 1st 2012 through October 10th 2012; on Thursday the seventeenth, I'll cover October 11th through October 24th; and I'll conclude October of 2012 on Friday the eighteenth of January, when I will cover October 25th through October 31st.

I will cover the month of November 2012, on Saturday the nineteenth; and on Sunday the twentieth, I'll cover the month of December 2012 through January 5th of 2013. 

The numbers of photo-ops (in my Aperture Library) for this particular year in my garden are: 62 for January of 2012; 8 for February of 2012; 1,085 for March of 2012; 983 for April of 2012; 595 for May of 2012; 1,276 for June of 2012; 1,015 for July of 2012; 980 for August of 2012; 7,016 for September of 2012; 5,170 for October of 2012; 1,853 for November of 2012; 220 for December of 2012; and as of January 5th, 2013, there are already thirty-one images. Generally, when a given month has a larger amount of images  it is due to what has bloomed, which is still the case; however because an array of visiting birds came to my garden this year, my image-count for the particular months they spent time here is higher. 

Moreover a number of upheavals occurred in my garden during certain months, and this accounts for varying image quantities per month. And now — if you are not totally confused by my detailed schedule, without further ado, the highly anticipated year in pictures for The Last Leaf Gardener's garden!

The garden year for January of 2012 began when Juan V and I completed garden winterizing for the year 2011, which as I've said in part one, we did on January 5th of 2012. On each occasion that Juan V is here, he takes a few aerial photographs for me; and the following are a couple of ones that he took for our last day of the 2012 garden.

The first image may look familiar to you, dear reader as it is a copy of the one I marked up to reference in part one of this blog entry.

The major garden task on January 5th 2012 was to dismantle a wooden arm chair which had been in my garden for several years (as documented in part one); and to use its slats to construct a shelf in my kitchen in order to give my Lemon-Lime Cypress Triplets a temporary home because this plant variety does not survive my growing zone during the traditional winter months. I discussed this last year on Blogger and if you'd like to reference the post, please click here.

The triplets did well in their temporary home as you might've surmised they would given how content they seemed to be on their shelf last year as seen in the photographs below.

But, unfortunately, one of them ultimately died during a heat wave which we had this past summer. And now, this January, the triplets have become twins, but seem to be happy and healthyespecially in their new "clothes" (larger clay pots) as well as being surrounded by Christmas decorations, as you can see in the image below taken by yours truly a year to the date of the cypresses first being moved inside!

January is usually not too exciting in my garden, but we did have some snow last year during that month and a few photo-ops can be seen below.

The first of these January 2012 winter scenes, "proves" how useful name tags in the garden can be; as for my name tag project, it is still lurking on a back burner somewhere despite my earnest attempts t make it happen, as indicated in a 2012 entry here on Blogger which you may refer to by clicking here.

The second of these January 2012 winter scenes provides a visual for my garden winterizing in terms of wrapping what I grow here, while the third image provides an overview of the snow in my garden for January of 2012, and in fact it was the only snow had in the winter season of 2012 as our second 2012 snowfall occurred during a nor'easter in the fall of that year! I'm wondering if we will even have snow in 2013!

Moving on to February of 2012, the main action was my bottles of vino, liqueurs, and spirits, donned hats and scarves to celebrate a "lone" Hens and Chicks, a hearty succulent, braving the winter atop the table in my garden as seen below.

But by the first Tuesday of March 2012, my Hens and Chicks had company as a large number of my tulips from various families were poking their heads out of the winterizing gear as seen below in a couple (out of many and out of a number of tulip famlies) images.

In fact — just like my various tulip families — a number of things which I grow, were showing signs of restlessness, poking their respective heads up through the mulch which covered them. It even looked as if the bubble-wrap that had been protecting the containers of my various flowers, grasses, herbs, plants, succulents, shrubs, trees and vines was "sweating" in the balmy temperatures, temperatures that were most unusual for early March! 

And, therefore, on the first Wednesday in March of 2012, Juan V came over to assess the situation with me and to photograph his first aerial view for what would be the 2012-2013 gardening season. His image can be seen below.

And he and I concluded that early as it was to do so, we needed to unwrap everything and move things away from the warmth of the building where I live, placing them in respective areas throughout my garden. The following is another aerial photograph, taken by Juan V after he and I completed the aforementioned "task."

The arrow that I've added to Juan V's image indicates the container which had been a "home" to my Autumn Clematis (AKA Donna's Legacy) for a number of years, but we realized it was high time that we repot it into a larger container and determined that we would do so the next time Juan came here which we scheduled for March 23rd 2012.

Meanwhile, as you might surmise from Juan's image, a number of things were showing signs of blooming well before spring but the only close-up I have from that particular day's "yard work"  is of my Corylus avellana 'Contorta' (AKA Contorted Hazelnut) taken by yours truly, which can be seen in the images below.

You may recall, in part one of this posting, dear reader, I mentioned that Juan V suggested placing my contorted hazelnut in what had been the stand (indicated by the yellow arrow in the second image) that supported my container "housing" my Fagus sylvatica (AKA Beech Tree), for a number of years. This new location pleased my contorted hazel nut as it was a great opportunity to truly show off its branches indicated by a white marking in the second image), which "twist in and out," as stated in my first garden themed virtual story (a movie produced in 2011), The Kiwi Speaks! Fifteen Minutes of fame . . .  almost, which is in my Vimeo Library, and you may view this selection by clicking here

A few months after this image was taken, my contorted hazel nut would ultimately boast about a "new" container that Juan V had planted it in, and, Michael, a gardener comrade of mine would ultimately be elated to be the recipient of the hazelnut's container seen here within the aqua square of the second image.

But getting back to the first full week of March for 2012 and the eager-beaver-early-budding of some of what I grow, the following are a few photo-ops taken by yours truly the day after Juan V and I unwrapped everything as I've just discussed.

Tulipa Parrot Blumex, Firat Week of March in 2012:
Ultimately featured in a Virtual Story (Garden Themed Movie) in Vimeo Library
Tulip Kaufmanniana, Firat Week of March in 2012:
Ultimately featured in a Virtual Story (Garden Themed Movie) in Vimeo Library 
Tulip Tarda, Firat Week of March in 2012:
Ultimately featured in a Virtual Story (Garden Themed Movie) in Vimeo Library
MORE Tulipia Tarda, Firat Week of March in 2012:
Ultimately featured in a Virtual Story (Garden Themed Movie) in Vimeo Library
Tulipia Curly Sue, Firat Week of March in 2012:
Ultimately featured in a Virtual Story (Garden Themed Movie) in Vimeo Librar

The tulips were by far not the only things in my garden to be early bloomers; in fact, some of the trees I grow began to bud early too, such as my beloved miniature Larix leptolepsis (AKA Japanese Larch), a larch which Juan V had given me in 2011 as discussed on in another entry here on Blogger, a larch I loved dearly, but who would ultimately be killed by a vicious heat wave in the summer of 2012, a fact I will get to later (part two- B) in this review when I get to the month (July 2012) when the sad event occurred. Meanwhile, below is a photo-op of it with its first buds for the 2012 season.

Larix leptolepsis (AKA Japanese Larch)
And in terms of other happenings in March of 2012, by the second Monday, the Kauffmanniana Family (seen in the second images of the tulip photo-ops pictured above) was already strutting its stuff as seen in the image posted below.

I suspect the Kauffmanianas' wanted to make sure they were ready to perform in their "tribute," a virtual story (mini-movie), to Tiny-Tip-Toe-Through-The Tulips-Tim, which they performed during Tiny Tim's birth month of April. The tulip's tribute can be found in my Vimeo Library by clicking here.

Also on the second Monday in March of 2012, a number of my shrubs, including my Cotoneaster apiculatus (AKA Thom Thumb), kept the tulips company with early budding as seen in the picture below.

While humans often complain about being sluggish on a Monday, this was not the case for the things I grow in my garden on the second Monday in March when my array of tulips, my beloved larch and thom thumb shrub were not the only ones working on their buds, some of the others that joined in include the following:

H.F. Clematis 
Farfugium japonicum 'Cristata' 
Heuchera 'Marmalde' (Coral Bells)
Paeonia suffruiticoa (Tree Peony)
Kiwi Vine
As for the second Tuesday in March, all of my rose shrubs began to join what grows on my terrace and the March leaves of one of them can be seen in the image posted below.

The roses had such an early start in 2012, then underwent a "trauma" when a so-called renovation took place in my garden but I will discuss that when we get to the month it occurred in (September of 2012), however, I have also referred to this "renovation" in part one of my year-end garden review.

Please keep in mind, in my March 2012 account, everything I've mentioned so far grew very quickly, and in most cases, I've only included the given flower, plant, tree, shrub or vine's first photo-op of the 2012 gardening season, which was quite inspiring — even to my salad greens who formed a "rose" with their leaves as seen below. 

But, perhaps one of the biggest surprises to me re March 2012 in my garden, came on the third Saturday of the month, March 17th 2012, Saint Patrick's Day, when I discovered not only the traditional irish color of green (and many shades of it) in my garden but on that day, I was blessed with the company of many purple crocuses (and one of them can be seen below). It had been the first time I'd had this type of flower and their whimsical manner was a joy to behold!

And chives (pictured below), which are normally considered to be "the first harbinger of spring," came to life in my garden, on the third day of March, the eighteenth, hence three days before the "official" day of spring, but nearly two weeks after Juan V had de-winterized for the 2012 year due to the many signs of blooms!

Blooms which continued to thrive and thrive as if they were on performance enhancing drugs; evidenced by these two photo-ops from 2012's first day of spring (and with a bit of scrolling up ward after viewing a given image (posted below), you will see that I'm not exaggerating about my garden's fast progress from the day Juan  V and I de-winterized on March 7th — two weeks before the official day of spring!

Paeonia suffruiticoa (Tree Peony)
Larix leptolepsis (AKA Japanese Larch)

And on the first day of spring in 2012, I was greeted by two new-comers, a cluster of Snow Parrot tulips as evidnced by a "single" posted below...

Snow Parrot Tulip Ultimately Featured in Tiny Tim Tribute on Vimeo
... as well as clusters of crocuses in a number of spots looking much like the ones posted below...

Crocuses Featured Here on Blogger and TLLG's tumblr Pages
... a couple of Fruitillaria, whose photo-op can also be found below...

Frutillaria Featured on TLLG's tumblr Pages
... and the sign of Original Poet Daffodils poking their heads above the soil to join the "party" in my garden as seen below.

These would prove to be quite awesome, inspiring the creation by yours truly of an animated flip-book I posted on tumblr and it included the image below. The strip may be seen by clicking here.

Moreover, some Muscari flowers (a single one is pictured below) who are newcomers to my garden joined us the day after spring!

However, a number of my Kauffmanniana tulips were already passing from their "first round" of life in the year 2012 in my garden as "represented" by the image below.

I found the Kauffmannia's to be as inspiring at the end of their life as they were in the beginning of their life! This is a fact which should come as no surprise to those who follow my venues as it's hardly a secret when it comes to my appreciation for my beloved maternal grandfather, maternal grandmother and for the wonderful folks I've "served" for over nine years in an assisted living center. 

The Kauffmannias' provided me with a way to express my philosophy which mirrors the playwright Herb Gardener's quote."The very old, they are miracles like the just born; close to the end is precious like close to the beginning."

Be that as it may, it seemed odd that Juan V missed the first round of some of the Kauffmannia's life, for it took place after he left here once we completed our  work on March 7th, 2012; and it ended before his return date of March 23rd 2012!

Our first "task" on that day was to repot the Sweet Autumn Clematis as per our plan; and root bound as the clematis was, we managed to get it out of its container without damage to the roots; and we even were able to salvage the container which I later gave to Michael for his garden.

As for the clematis and its new digs, please refer to the two aerial images below (taken by Juan V). The arrow on each image indicates the Sweet Autumn Clematis's new container which it "shared" with Muscari.

And the following aerial images, which were also taken by Juan V, show the "status" of my garden on March 23rd 2012.

The things I grow appreciate Juan V (who was scheduled to return here April 4th of 2012) as much as I do and on the twenty-third of March, a few of the buds from my Paeonia suffruiticosa (seen below)...

... led a number of my flowers, plants, trees and shrubs in song as they posed for March 23rd 2012 photo-ops, some of which can be seen below:

Tulipia Curly Sue's Foliage
Ultimately featured in a Virtual Story (Garden Themed Movie) in Vimeo Library
Larix leptolepsis (AKA Japanese Larch)
MORE Buds from My Paeonia suffruicosa 
Tulipa Parrot Blumex
Ultimately featured in a Virtual Story (Garden Themed Movie) in Vimeo Library 
Yet ANOTHER Bud from My Paeonia suffruicosa
A Kauffmannia Tulip (Ultimately Featured in a Virtual Story (Mini Movie On Vimeo)
Frutillaria Ultimately Featured on TLLG's tumblr Pages
And two others (who had not been photographed in 2012) joined the festivities, they are the Ajuga  and my Phlox subulata (AKA Creeping Phlox) who would ultimately be a "statistic" succumbing to a horrific heat wave that NYC ultimately had in July! But that was far from anyone's mind as the ajuga and her buddies, the family of creeping phlox, posed for photos on March 23rd 2012 as seen below.

Creeping Phlox
Of course, with the conclusion of the "performances" by the things that I grow here, March only had a week and a day left! Upon seeing the images below (which were taken in the last week of March), did March 2012 go out like a lion or a lamb? (Feel free to leave your answer in the comments field below today's entry and for directions to do this, please click here and with that "offer," dear reader, I'll see you tomorrow, Tuesday, January 8th 2012, with the year-end review for the month of April of 2012.

A Snow Parrot Tulip (Ultimately Featured in a Virtual Story — mini movie — on Vimeo
A Curly Sue Tulip "grasps her face" with Excitement!
Creeping Phlox Flowers Enjoying Life (Before the Deadly Heat Wave Set In!)
(At least they were featured in a Virtual Story — mini movie — on Vimeo!)
Larix leptolepsis (AKA Japanese Larch)
 Paeonia suffruicosa (Buds) does the Cha Cha!

The Ever Classy Parrot Blumex Tulip!
(Ultimately Agrees to Participate in a Tribute to Tiny Tim on Vimeo)
Curly Sue Lookin' Cozy!
Ultimately she finds herself featured in a Virtual Story — mini movie — on Vimeo!



This is a photo of my three volume book series, "Words In Our Beak." Information re the books is another one of my blog  posts @

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