Friday, January 06, 2012

In Search Of Spring

I have often wondered what it would be like to live in a more temperate climate where winter was fleeting and the lines were blurred between the seasons.  Well, this year in the Chicago area so far it is the winter that isn't, virtually no snow, above average temperatures and crunchy dirt but not a hard freeze.

My Pink Meidiland roses and the grass have stayed green.

Uncovered Italian Parsley

The Carex Ice Mountains is sprouting on the north side.

I am really getting excited that this might be spring coming early.  However, getting back to reality I know that winter has barely begun.  We were told early on that the worst winter, blizzards, etc., was expected.  It is January and we are in the fifties!!!

This hellebore doesn't know any better and it is slowly poking through the soil.

My Dinosaur Fern, also on the north side, had laid down for a rest but it is still green and has not disappeared as it usually does.

The Autumn Fern has been fooled into thinking it is still autumn.

Euphorbia Blackbeard

Becky Shasta Daisy

Geranium Karmina

I am really liking this green winter so much life visible even though I know the season has changed.  It wouldn't be hard for me to get used to this type of climate!  I recently read that our zones are changing with mine going from a solid zone five to a five/six zone for the Chicago area with the five designation for the northern areas.  This change has been tracked from 1990 up until 2010 and just think of all the additional plants I can grow in zone 6.

I know this is a warmer zone on the south side of my house, daffodils up with buds showing.

Muscari never did die back this year on the south side.

Snapdragons manytimes come back after a cold winter, but these have never left!

Usually my Miscanthus Udine is under the snow by now, glad I did not cut it down this year!

This could all be under the snow in the near future but it has been great to experience living in another zone even if just for a little while.


Mary Anne said...

Hi Eileen:

Unbelievable! It has been quite a Winter so far! I haven't done any looking in my back yard, but I probably have some of the same things going on. Get used to this weather? I already have! But as you said . . . I somehow know what is ahead of us.

Off to Mexico in the morning! See you soon!

garden girl said...

It's very unusual. It's already up to 48 this morning in the south 'burbs. I'm enjoying it while it lasts!

scottweberpdx said...

How glad you left that Miscanthus! We're having an unusually warm and dry winter as well...barely any rain at all so far.

Lona said...

Your garden looks like mine Eileen. They think it is spring already. I love the foliage on your Euphorbia Blackbeard. So pretty. Have a wonderful weekend.

Beth said...

Hi Eileen, This winter is, as you say, the winter that wasn't! At least so far...I enjoyed my tour of your garden today and I am going to go for a walk pretty soon.
Hugs, Beth

NellJean said...

Winter looms on the horizon. Sometime in March we'll be wondering if Spring will ever get here and that late killing frost in April will dash many of my garden dreams.

Meantime, enjoy.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Mary Anne, I am sure you have a lot of the same things going on, but why would you even want to notice when you are going to Mexico, enjoy!


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi GG, I am sure you are even warmer than I am. I could get used to this very easily.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Scott, I am stunned by this weather. I have just taken all of my Christmas decor down including the bows. They looked a little ridiculous in almost sixty degrees.


Gatsbys Gardens said...


My garden does look like yours, can you believe this? Are we going to pay the price later!


Gatsbys Gardens said...


It is very strange this year, really getting caught up in this spring thing.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

Nell Jean,

You are correct, must keeep thinking it is winter not spring!


Zoey said...

That Miscanthus is lovely.

It was 52 degrees here yesterday. The 8 inches of snow we got last week has pretty much melted away.I love it, but I don't think the plants will be too happy if we don't get a good snow cover soon.

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Zoey,

I am concerned about the lack of snow cover especially for the plants I just put in last fall.


CanadianGardenJoy said...

Eileen girl this weather is making me VERY nervous .. too warm and windy and DRY with hardly any snow.
Not good for my garden so I am expecting losses which i am afraid will be most of the new plants I put in .. I have "green" plants in the garden too and I laugh at how the Dusty Miller kept coming back to life over and over again .. but I think it has had the biscuit now.
I am so excited about my white rose coming this year .. I have to find the perfect spot for it !
That one rose you have with scent ? needs another scented rose for companionship girl ! wink wink
Joy : )

Jennifer@threedogsinagarden said...

Hi Eileen, Happy New Year! I have been visiting lots of garden blogs this morning who report the same thing: unseasonable mild temperatures. It was so warm here yesterday that it felt like spring had arrived. I have decided to relax and enjoy it. Winter is bound to show up any day now! Have a great Sunday!

mrbrownthumb said...


Hasn't it been a crazy winter? I have to admit that I'm loving the temperate weather. No complaints from me.

Gatsbys Gardens said...


The weather is too warm and some plants can be harmed by this warm and then cold. It did look up that white rose and it is offered in my area from a California supplier that I have ordered from before. I love the it has a scent.


Gatsbys Gardens said...


I am loving these temperatures, however, I did cover my new plantings with my holiday evergreen garlands.


Gatsbys Gardens said...


It has been an unusual winter but I spoke to a friend today who is a transplant from this area to South Carolina and she says it has been unusual there also. Things are blooming two months early!


Becca's Dirt said...

The weather is certainly wierd this year. The whole country is strange. It is nice to see the plants growing though.

joey said...

Crazy winter, Eileen! My autumn ferns are still green too! Ah, but think we will pay dearly down the road!

Gatsbys Gardens said...

Hi Becca,

It certainly has been strange, high fifties yesterday.


Gatsbys Gardens said...

I think you are right Joey, winter storm watch out for tomorrow!


CanadianGardenJoy said...

Hi again Eileen girl .. our forecasts are still not right for this time of year .. nothing can be done about it so I just have to brace myself when the dead plant count starts in Spring.
YES !! this rose is amazing to me and YES !! I can't buy one that doesn't have scent now .. sadly as beautiful as Morden Sunrise is .. no scent really .. BIG sigh !!