Garden Photo of the Day

Beauty and the Beast in a Winter Garden

Good and bad of the cold season

Today we’re headed to Independence, Oregon, where Erla Richards is sharing some of the beautiful—and not so beautiful—faces of the winter garden.

Many readers are looking toward spring, as am I, but winter is not over. We haven’t had snow or ice in my part of Oregon for several years, so these are an accumulation of photos of past years. These pictures remind me of Beauty and the Beast—the beauty of glassy ice-covered shrubs from freezing rain and the beast of the damage that ice can do.

ice covered Bosnian pineBeauty—ice-covered Bosnian pine (Pinus heldreichii, Zones 3–8)

PierisPieris (Pieris japonica, Zones 5–9) blooms-to-come showing through the ice.

bird feeders in winterMy birds still need to be fed, and they manage to cope.

jacquemontii birchA young jacquemontii birch (Betula jacquemontii, Zones 5–7) bent to the ground from the weight of so much ice.

old oak covered in iceThe beast side of the ice storm: the weight of ice was too much for this old oak.

Annas hummingbird in winterThis tiny hummer probably wishes he hadn’t hung around. (Editor’s note: If, like me, you live in the eastern United States, you might be very surprised to see a hummingbird in the snow! The West Coast has difference species of hummingbirds, and one, Anna’s hummingbird, regularly stays put through the winter rather than migrating south like the eastern ruby-throated hummingbird does.)

jacquemontii birch in snow at nightMidnight snow falling on the jacquemontii birch.

black walnut in winterBeauty of the winter sky over the black walnut (Juglans sp., Zones 4–9) waiting for spring.

Mount JeffersonA view of Mount Jefferson from my deck.

Oregon coast at sunsetThe Oregon coast is quiet and beautiful in the winter.

 

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Comments

  1. sohappygardening 02/10/2021

    Beautiful pictures Erla. Oregon’s environment is breath taking.

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    treasuresmom 02/10/2021

    Great pics Erla. Thanks for sharing them.

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    treasuresmom 02/10/2021

    To those who may be interested, if you type Erla's name in the search bar you will find many wonderful submissions from her previously.

    1. User avater
      SimpleSue 02/10/2021

      thanks for the info!

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    VanhaTaloSuomi 02/10/2021

    Great photos. Wondering how the jacquemontii birch has performed after being smothered in ice for a season. Was the other photo of the same tree, before or after the ice event?

    1. Erla 02/10/2021

      The Jacquemontii in the snow was earlier than the ice. Actually, the ice doesn't last a season as below freezing weather is rare in Oregon. Unbelievably, when the ice melted, the branches raised up, however there were a few broken branches. But the tree recovered and gives us wonderful shade.

  5. User avater
    SimpleSue 02/10/2021

    The title of "Beauty and the Beast" for ice on the plants is perfect.
    Such a beautiful post.
    That lonely looking Black Walnut with the winter sky was so moody and beautiful....and wow, what a great view you have of that mountain!
    Like the editor that lives in the east said...it is shocking to see the hummingbird in the snow....so glad you are a "bird feeder" type of gardener.

  6. User avater
    BDOwen 02/10/2021

    This is a spectacular portfolio of photos! My favorite is probably the birds at the feeder with the icicles dripping from the edges- imagine the birds' conversation as they figure out how to fly in without hitting the icicles.

  7. BTucker9675 02/10/2021

    Stunning photos - and the mountain view from your garden is beyond words... I'm sorry your old oak succumbed to the weight of the ice. Ice is definitely Dangerous Beauty. Thank you for sharing these!

  8. Erla 02/10/2021

    The Jacquemontii in the snow was earlier than the ice. Actually, the ice doesn't last a season as below freezing weather is rare in Oregon. Unbelievably, when the ice melted, the branches raised up, however there were a few broken branches. But the tree recovered and gives us wonderful shade.

  9. user-5117752 02/14/2021

    Just beautiful photos! I particularly liked the first two of the pine and Pieris. Amazing how plants can survive what Mother Nature puts upon them. And, I didn't know about the Ana's hummer staying around in your state. I start setting out my hummingbird feeders around April 10th and count the days until I see the first to arrive. I'm not sure why, but I only get 2-3 most summers. 34 days 'till spring!!!!

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