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Best of the Rest, 2016

Happy New Year, everyone! Hopes and plans for the new gardening year are bouncing around my brain. Outside, relentless rain flows over the trees and shrubs and the earth. Let the ground soak it in. After last year's drought, I am grateful for the steady downpour. I think 2016 was a hard year for the garden, but when I look back over last year's photos, I remember the beautiful spring and a summer that wasn't too bad until it became the monster that ate up fall.

But now it is time for my "Best of the Rest" feature! Every year I look back and choose photos from each month. These are photos that did not make it into the blog, for various reasons. I use only photos of my own garden for this feature, so it is a good overview of Deb's Garden through the year. So, here we go:

January: Stump World is a group of huge oak stumps that have been slowly rotting in the woods for over 25 years. All but two have completely decayed. They provide nourishment and shelter for countless small critters.

February:Camellias are beginning to bloom in the woodland garden.

Edgeworthia and quince are late winter bloomers that brighten the gray days of February.

March: The garden comes alive in March. It was hard to choose which images to use. I have too many!

A fallen Magnolia petal nestles next to a Bloodroot bloom.

Serviceberry is one of the first trees to bloom in the spring.

March sky


May:Anthony Waterer Spirea is one of my favorite May bloomers, and it will repeat bloom through the summer.

June: I call June the "deep greening" month. Green becomes prominent in the garden.Clockwise from top left: Gardenia bud; Gardenia flower; Cercis canadensis 'Whitewater' leaf; Dwarf gardenia.



September:I bought these on sale at the beginning of September, with plans to plant them before the next rain. It was months before I was able to plant them.

These persimmons fell prematurely from the tree, no doubt due to drought stress.


November:Hosta and Toad Lily foliage as they go dormant

Rings on a windchime

December: Goodbye, 2016!

I hope you enjoyed my tour through the year! Did you have a favorite month?

Best wishes to you all!   Deb 

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Reader Comments (16)

Your garden looks beautiful in every season, Deb. I can't pick a favorite. I take it that your drought is over and winter is providing what it should! While it's way too early to say our drought is over, we had the wettest December in 6 years and that's a start.

January 2, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterKris P

I'm never able to pick a favorite; each month brings it's own "best". I'm SO thankful for this rain we're getting, and looking forward to all that 2017 brings. xo

January 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterChristi {Jealous Hands}

The native persimmon that grows alongside the road did not have a single persimmon this year. We were in the throes of a summer drought for the second year in a row so I suspect that is what caused it. I need to move my bloodroot a little closer to the house since I usually miss the blooms. Any tips on doing that?

January 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterLinda

I always enjoy a virtual walk through your garden. You and I have very similar gardens so it is always nice to get inspiration from yours. I love the moss on the woodland floor. It adds such a nice texture and color to the area. The end of 2016 was really tough in the garden. The drought was horrific. I will see in spring if some of the plants survived. Fingers crossed. Happy New Year Deb!

January 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterKarin/Southern Meadows

Thank you all for your comments! Each is important to me. Linda, you asked about moving your bloodroot. I have never moved mine. After I planted them, they disappeared for a couple of years and have been very slow to establish. They are finally beginning to spread and make their presence known!
I would dig bloodroot up as soon as you see it, being sure to move a healthy chunk of the ground with them. Try to move them so that they don't suspect it! Be sure to put them in a similar environment with good soil high in organic matter. Good luck!

January 3, 2017 | Registered CommenterDeborah Elliott

What a neat idea to show a few monthly pictures, I love it!!
You had a tough year, the missing rain and the beetle disaster on your beautiful maple. I hope your new year will bring you the necessary rains and hopefully the maple will recover nicely :-)
Happy New Year!

January 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterGone Tropical

I enjoyed your "Best of the Rest" post Deb on this rainy winter day, It is always difficult to narrow down the best of the best for posts, so this is a great idea! All the photos are all wonderful, but I think my absolute favorite is the one from April with the fern...simply elegant!.

Happy New Year! Gosh, I honestly think I would be very happy in your climate--especially with plenty of shade as you have. Camellias blooming in February ... sigh. :)

January 3, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterBeth @ PlantPostings

What a amazing collection of photos! My favourite month has to be June because you focussed on green. I'm very glad you did! It shook the old June notions of rose and Geranium shades right out of my mind. The leaf of Cercis canadensis 'Whitewater' is utterly beautiful. Needless to say, I am going to find out if it will cope with my garden. If it will, it will be on my shopping list within a matter of seconds. Wishing you the happiest of years ahead.

January 4, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSarah Shoesmith

All months are beautiful in your garden but on this occasion I'm going to choose August because it shows that with humidity plants can stand high temperatures, I imagine that by the time the heat continued into autumn the ground was dry and all the humidity had gone. Have a wonderful 2017, looking forward to reading about your plans and ideas.

January 4, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterChristina

Hm, I think I may like your February and March pictures the best!

Incidentally, I'd *love* to add Amelanchier (serviceberry) and Chaenomeles (quince) to my garden, but I'm very concerned they'd both suffer from rusts due to the many Juniperus virginiana (eastern red cedar) on my property.

In fact, I'll be adding more red cedars because I love their evergreen presence and I need the privacy they bring. They're also super tough natives and have berries for the birds.

Still, I know that cedar apple rust is real. I've seen it wreak havoc on a crabapple I planted, and I worry that I'd be dooming serviceberry and quince to a diseased life if I tried adding them to the garden.

Thoughts? Do you have lots of eastern red cedar on your property? If so, are the serviceberry and quince affected?

January 4, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAaron

The April wreath
and glimpses of corners of your garden that you don't usually show us.

January 4, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDiana Studer

I'm so glad you're getting relief from the drought. Beautiful pictures, I can imagine how hard it is to choose. I love that woodland scene you have with the little bridge.

January 4, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterjason

Wishing everyone the best! I appreciate you all visiting and taking time to comment. Aaron, I actually have lots of Eastern Red Cedars on my property. Apple cedar rust has never affected the quince, which has been here many years, or the serviceberry, which has been here about four years. Apple cedar rust has affected my two apple trees, however. One has apparently developed an immunity, as it is no longer affected. The second apple tree still has problems with it, but I am hoping it will eventually become immune like its partner did. Deb

January 4, 2017 | Registered CommenterDeborah Elliott

I so enjoyed this trip back through 2016 in your garden. I don't think I can pick a favorite month. They're all just so lovely!

January 9, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterRobin

Wow! Wonderful! Every month is beautiful, especially februari with the moss and Camellias.

January 10, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDenise

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