WPC: Off Season

February 21, 2015 ice 004


Is there truly an “off season” in the garden? 

Certainly, it depends on your climate zone.  Here in USDA 7b we can garden year round.


January 14, 2015 ice storm 048


Roses bloom until December.  The first of the spring bulbs might be spotted from December until February, depending on the weather.


January 27, 2015 snow 005~

We grow Violas from October until June, and many gardeners harvest collards, carrots, and other hardy crops right through the winter.  Our best gardening season starts in March or April, ending in October or November.  But that is our prime “frost free” time for most vegetables and annuals.

We have so many wonderful shrubs, bulbs, and hardy annuals that we enjoy flowers every day of the year in our garden.  Camellias bloom from October until May.  Roses begin when the Camellias end.


Oregon Grape Holly blooms from late December through February here.

Oregon Grape Holly blooms from late December through February here.


That isn’t to say that we don’t have difficult weather.

We have ice and snow, thunderstorms, hurricanes, heatwaves and worse.  But it tends to balance out.  And we learn to work around it.

It has already gotten so hot and humid that we can barely stand to go outside, some days.  Our heat index was over 100 several days this week.


January 15, 2015 ice garden 006


There might as well be a foot of snow on the ground for all the outdoor gardening we can do in heat like this!

But there are always things to do.  All gardening doesn’t happen outside in a flower bed!


January 15, 2015 ice garden 011


We are approaching mid-summer in our garden, now.  New butterflies turn up daily; and our turtles, frogs, lizards, toads, butterflies and hummingbirds  keep us company.

We listen to frog song each night, and listen to the lizards skittering around behind the flower pots whenever we step outside.

A pot of Gardenias blooms near the back door, greeting us with their sweetness as we come and go.


January 15, 2015 ice garden 032


The perennials grow visibly each day, squirrels feast on the little fruits swelling on the limbs of our fruit trees, and the second crop of roses is coming out.


January 15, 2015 ice garden 144


This is a  wonderful time to pause and remember the beauties of winter.

I will sit and enjoy these photos as the hot summer sun climbs to its summer heights, braising us in its searing heat.


Here we are, enjoying our garden in weather fine and foul!

Here we are, enjoying our garden in weather fine and fowl!


Whether you live north or south, east or west; I hope you will enjoy them, too.

This is what the “off season” looks like in our Forest Garden.


January 15, 2015 ice garden 107~

For The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Off Season

Woodland Gnome 2015


About woodlandgnome

Lifelong teacher and gardener.

29 responses to “WPC: Off Season

  1. Pingback: Burning Tires in Urbino | litadoolan

  2. Lovely portrait of your garden impressions “off season”. When weather starts to heat up- it’s good to keep some ice on hand and a couple of chilled flamingos for good measure 🙂

  3. In what part of Oregon are you living? And are you also in a drought? We’re having the opposite here in Central Texas. As I type this, the sky is vomiting rain. Again. My “off” season is typically July-August, sometimes starting in June. Not this year. I’m moving, transplanting and gardening away–in the heat and humidity and between storms.

    Love your photos–they show the great variety of weather you must deal with.

    • Thank you, Tina. “…Vomiting rain…” I like that 😉 We’ve been watching the terrible flooding on the WC. I hope that is far away from you! I’m sure you are keeping an eye on the storm moving into TX, too. We live in Virginia. My daughter lives on the OR coast, and I love to visit her there. We have other family living in the Willamette Valley. No drought here in Virginia, I’m happy to say. We are having enough rain that I don’t have to go out and water in this abominable heat, except for the pots and baskets now and again. Thank you for the kind words, and for visiting ❤ ❤ ❤

  4. The weather becomes engaging conversational material for gardeners, doesn’t it? We used to think there was nothing we could do but adapt. Now we know that there ARE things we can do about it, each in our own small way.

  5. It’s unseasonably hot here in Portland too. I’d take a little frost over this incessant heat any day, if there was a choice. Yuck!

    • Anna, we have been watching the heat in the Northwest and been concerned for all of our loved ones there . No one is prepared for it to be so hot! We hope things settle back to normal soon . We hear it is a little better on the coast … how is your garden holding up to the heat? Best wishes , WG

      • So far okay, thanks. (I have a lot of shade.) But it is very dry, so I’m watering more than I normally would in June. I have to say I’m dreading July/August/Sept. But I’m a Swede, so I’m probably a little oversensitive… 🙂

        • I hope your rain returns and blesses your garden with just what is needed. My Portland born husband hates the heat here in the Southeast. We are conditioned by our upbringing and genetics. I was raised in VA, in the era before everyone had AC, and so am somewhat used to it. I least I know I’ll survive on days like this 😉

  6. The pink flamingos in the snow wins the prize.

  7. I love the pink flamingos in the snow! Some would say they are cheesy, but they never fail to put a smile on my face.

  8. HA! We gardeners are never done, are we! Whether our gardens are large or small, I agree, there are always things still to do 😉

  9. Love this refreshing visit to winter in the Forest Garden! All that ice and snow actually looks pretty nice right about now. 🙂

  10. I thoroughly enjoyed the cool sights of winter in your garden. It has indeed been hot, and I have to force myself to step outside so I can see what’s happening in our gardens. I was delighted to see you have pink flamingos in your garden! I used to have some, too, back in Ohio. The poor things got so weathered during the harsh winters. My youngest son gave me five of them for my 50th birthday, and I think there might still be one or two in the barn in Ohio. The others cracked and fell apart.

    • These have held up surprisingly well 😉 They have special meaning for us, and we enjoy them. We keep them out of sight of the street, but where we can smile whenever we see them 😉 Wouldn’t a flock of flamingos look fabulous in your scrounger’s garden, Robin? May be time for a new batch to fly in and find home 😉 I’m glad you enjoyed the winter photos too. I feel better just looking at that ice at the moment! Only mornings and evenings are fit for stepping outside the door ! Hugs WG

  11. Gardens always have their highlights, don’t they, whatever the season. Your flamingoes in snow made me smile 🙂 It seems no time since you were still buried in snow and now it is so hot and humid instead … I can imagine how busy you must be in the garden in that brief interlude of suitable ‘gardening weather’!

    • It is funny for you to say that, Peggy. We do run out and do as much as we can when the weather is right and we have uncommitted time. I’m just in from several hours of effort, and only came in when my husband called on my cell and said, “Enough! Get back in here!” Heat index here is quite high at the moment, but I got some things done which have been needing attention 😉 Once outside, there are a million little tasks which present themselves. I”m sure you understand 😉 So happy you like our little Flamingos 😉 Best wishes, WG

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