Garden Photo of the Day

Jeff needs some cheering up….

Cedrus deodara 'Aureum'.
Photo/Illustration: All photos courtesy of Jeff Calton

Jeff Calton (tntreeman) is not a happy man at the moment. He’s COLD! I got this email from him on Wednesday morning, with some photos to share from his garden in eastern Tennessee.

Cedrus atlantica ‘Glauca’

He said, “Woke up to -2 and snow. I know so many parts of the country are colder and icier than we are here but we are not accustomed to such a prolonged arctic season here. I decided today that rather than complain about the weather and cold that I would embrace it so I took some photos and I will admit that winter does have it’s beauty and charm. Who am I kidding?!?!? I still hate the cold! Thankfully, this years lemon crop will save the day.”

I think the rosemary is probably toast.

It’ll warm up soon, Jeff, I promise! Bundle up and drink an extra whiskey sour in my name…

I wonder how many obituaries I’m gonna have?

—-Winter is the perfect time to take a photographic stroll through the photos you took in your garden this year……and then send some in to me at [email protected]!

Blurry curly filbert–I was freezing.
Blue stem rush

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View Comments


  1. perenniallycrazy 01/31/2014

    Can I send you anything from here to cheer you up tntreeman?

    You know, I hate winter too so let's drink to that.

  2. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Cherry, you cheer me up everytime we talk.
    and that WAS the entire lemon crop, 2,,,,,,,,,,,i think Sunkist is safe for now

  3. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    i just noticed that Elmo is eyeing that bottle with a gleam in his eye!

  4. gloriaj 01/31/2014

    Jeff, I know how you feel about this weather, it has done a number on me this year with my lungs. When the temperature drops like it, I can't venture out, have to stay inside. Normally I don't mind
    but this year even with me staying inside, I had a severe asthma attack and ended up in the hospital for six days. Twice I almost passed out. I had to have breathing treatment around the clock. I am still having problems, so my family is having me to go to California to stay with my sons until the weather breaks. I will be leaving Tuesday. I rather stay home, but my lungs say no. I am staying positive by thinking about when Spring comes and all the projects I have line up. I am anxious about seeing if my fig tree survived and seeing what the new Hydrangeas will do this year. I have a new garden I want to start to hide a eyesore that my neighbor has that I am tired of looking at and this will be my first year as a certified Master Gardener and looking forward to working with them. So Jeff I want you to play in the dirt by rearrange those plants. start new projects and do all of this in your mind so that when Spring comes you will be like the rest of us gardeners running in the garden trying to will those flowers up through the dirt. YOU CAN DO IT JEFF !!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    gloriaj, get well soon! and enjoy your time in CA with your sons just don't get any wild ideas about growing those california plants that dazzle in your Ohio garden! i'm a little concerned about my figs too. sure they froze back to ground level but i'm hoping for regrowth from the roots. take care and get that garden planned!!!

  6. deeinde 01/31/2014

    Hang in there Jeff! Spring will come! Your pictures are GORGEOUS!!! Snow is so beautiful! You have been braver than me. My pictures have been from the window! lol

  7. Annedean 01/31/2014

    The view outside my windows and the current temperature are very much like yours. But your delightful captions made me look with new eyes at the snowy garden-- and dream of spring.... Thanks, Treeman!

  8. gloriaj 01/31/2014

    Jeff,I have no plans of staying California. It nice to visit but wouldn't want to live there, Too fast for me. I will still be checking in here ( GPOD ) while there and hope to see some gardens and maybe I can send in pictures.

  9. flowerladydi 01/31/2014

    Good morning Jeff,,,,

    I feel your pain,,,,,, we are all getting hit hard this year!,,, and even though we here in Chicago land are used to the cold,,, this year has been brutal!,,,,, but,,,,,it IS beautiful!!!,,, and your yard is sooo beautiful!!!,,,,, at least if you do lose some thing,,,, and I HOPE you don't,, or at the very least it is minimal,,, they will all have put on a great show in their demise?!,,, does that help?,,,,sorry,,,,,, I too may lose a small weeping deodar cedar that I have been soooo fortunate to keep alive the past 2 winters in spite or it not being a zone 5,,, but with this years sub zero temps so often,,, may not be so lucky. We always push the limit don't we?,,,, so,,,, enjoy the beauty,,, enjoy your whiskey ( red wine for me ),,, and let's all think positive thoughts for an early sunny spring! -:)

  10. Plantstuff 01/31/2014

    Tntreeman - winter is miserable. I live in upstate NY. What I did this winter is started the minature garden hobby. You can create little garden scenes and pretend you are part of it in your imangation. It sounds as though you are on the right track with the cocktails. That is my other winter hobby turning on the fireplace and having one or two glasses of red wine. That always seems to make winter tolerable. I to am wondering how many obits I will be writing up with the days of -22 and that is without windchill. Sometimes I wonder why I garden in such a climate with the temp. swings we have. Cheer up it will be over soon. Go to a flower show, have you been to the Philly Flower Show. It is always amazing and just the shot you need for winter blues and to get the creative juices flowing for the spring. Check out Longwood Gardens while in Philly the greenhouse is enormous and full of orchids this time of year.

    Gloriaj - feel better soon. I feel bad for you. My husband also has lung issues and this winter has been difficult with his breathing.

  11. trashywoman62 01/31/2014

    Boohoo says this Illinois gardener!!

    I say think Spring!!

  12. sheilab 01/31/2014

    Everyone gets the winter blahs including us cold hardy types from Newfoundland. It's -7 celsius with a wind chill of -20 here this morning but the other day it was +8. This month we've had a ton of snow and then enough rain to take all the snow away and now piles of snow again! Thank goodness it's the last day of January!

  13. sheilab 01/31/2014

    Beautiful photos, by the way!

  14. trashywoman62 01/31/2014

    Oh and I get to spend the day with our 1st class of Master Gardeners today! How exciting!

  15. GardeningRocks 01/31/2014

    It sure has been a prolonged arctic season! Massachusetts is going to be nice today - in the 30's! As sad as it sounds 30 really does feel warm compared with what we have had so far this winter! I am also beginning to notice that the sun is setting later, and I like that. Spring is coming for sure. So be glad you don't live in Newfoundland (sorry, Sheila!) and stay warm by the fire, glass in hand, dreaming of how to fill the gaps left by the plant obits when spring finally does spring!

    Hang on Gloria! Spring is coming for you too! Your positive attitude is awesome.

  16. JonMoss 01/31/2014

    I'm not sure of the temperature but it's so cold here that I saw a chicken with a capon. How cold is it where you are?

  17. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    a chicken with a capon :) you are punny
    AND where have you been ?!?!?!

  18. User avater
    meander_michaele 01/31/2014

    Well, Jeff, it might be cold outside but your pictures and commentary lured many to share your misery right away this morning. I had to check the time on my laptop because when I saw that 17 other gpod-ers had already checked in, I felt like I must have overslept!
    Love the graceful and ethereal look of the snow laden deodara cedar. After viewing all the many shades of white, the jolt of color provided by the lemons and the warm amber of some good old Tennessee whisky was just what the doctor ordered!

    Gloria, I hope your time spent out in CA is very restorative and you return home in fine gardening mettle.

  19. MJGilchrist 01/31/2014

    Hello from snowy and frigid New Hampshire! Your beautiful photos look like MY backyard! 49 days til'll bet you see Crocus and Daffodils before I will! Cheers to you! Have a great day!

  20. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Michaele, misery loves company and company usually loves Tennessee whiskey :)

  21. trashywoman62 01/31/2014

    Jon, I had to look up capon and it says a castrated rooster... I don't get it? :(

    Jeff, I've just been preoccupied with Life and don't need extra drama, you know what I mean ;) I have definitely missed your quirky sense of humor and others here on GPOD.

    Now off to get these new MG students revved up! We need more worker bees here in our small group!

  22. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Regina, good to see you back and to know that you are still SASSY!

  23. GardenGrl1 01/31/2014

    Good morning, everyone!

    I feel your pain, tntreeman! It has been so cold here, that I haven't even wanted to venture out to my (not insulated) sun porch. Although I am usually able to keep rosemary, tarragon, and lemongrass alive out there, this year was just too cold. Total loss on all plants.

    So, I'm enjoying the seed & plant catalogues, making my wish list longer from all of the awesome plants I see on this blog, and driving my husband crazy with my Spring 2014 garden plans!

    Congratulations on the lemons! They are quite difficult to cultivate indoors!

  24. crizmo 01/31/2014

    It is cold here too. I live near the county courthouse and lately lawyers have been seen with their hands in their own pockets.

  25. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 01/31/2014

    Jeff, you crack me up! Agavesicles! My agaves are still under piles of snow. I'll see if they rot with the temporary warming trend. We all feel your pain.
    Capon = Cape on

  26. Dillon05 01/31/2014

    Hello Jeff,

    Yes winter does have its beauty and charm. From Newfoundland, Canada, an island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and I am quite use to the cold winters! not as cold as some parts of Canada, and cold summers at times also, but it is Mother Nature at her best, giving you a taste of winter and all it's glory. It is not all that bad. Nothing like dressing up and going for a wonderful crisp walk in the beautiful fresh air...Cheers!!!!

  27. user-7006902 01/31/2014

    What beautiful, if cold, Winter scenes from your garden. I hear you! Last night Chipotle burrito dinner and my own version of Palomas (white tequila, grapefruit juice, club and lime) put me back in the spirit of things. I'm quite envious of the lemons! And though I am stuck in Z4 North Country, it helps that I am undergoing Master Gardener training. I just LOVE it and can't wait to get back in the garden, order plants, start seeds ... Nice Driveway! (That's a local cheer we say around here. Means to your health. It's sort of like In the Garden of Eden > Inagodadivada; Na zdrowie > Nice Driveway!)

  28. celiahoneysuckle 01/31/2014

    Oh dear the Rosemary, but all is not lost. Hope you have a wood stove.

  29. tractor1 01/31/2014

    I don't mind the sub zero temps, that's normal for the Catskills... but I'm not too pleased with the artificially created propane shortage and the 25% price increase... a lot of farmers are losing greenhouse crops and indoor livestock... be prepared for ludicrous food prices.

  30. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    red wine, tequila, whiskey, harley riding gardeners should Michelle ever organize a gpod convention i think the authorities should be alerted beforehand

  31. hummergirl 01/31/2014

    Jeff, Just have another whiskey or two, you will soon forget about the snow! I have to admit though, that I am feeling about the same here in Delaware. We are having a mini-heatwave this morning, it was 21 degrees! ya-hoo!! Your pictures are beautiful while I see why you are worrying about your plants and trees. This winter has been brutal to so many areas not used to being subjected to arctic temps. The nurseries will be bustling this spring! I am interested in knowing what kind of agaves you have that survive in your Zone. I would love to have one or two.
    crizmo: That cracked me up!!

  32. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    hummergirl, i only have 2 Agave outside that have survived for years but i don't know about now. A. parryi and A. havardiana, it's not the cold that gets the more hardy varieties it's the wet. maybe it's crazy to even try them but i usually try everything once or maybe even 3 times. Vojt has some in Ohio. tip: wear saftey glasses and thick gloves when working with them, those spines are incredibly pointy and rigid they go right to the bone or rip like a sharkbite danger garden blog usually lists many more hardy varieties

  33. janetsfolly 01/31/2014

    Beautiful photos, Jeff! Even tho it's the kind of beauty you could've done without :-(. I'm sure we'll all be replacing melted plants next Spring and I know I'm happily searching the catalogs, all discipline thrown to the frigid winds! Jeff, it's so funny to see those 2 lemons... The other night I dreamt that you showed up at my farm with a pickup full of citrus trees in this sub zero weather! You were unwrapping them and trying to convince me that I really COULD grow them but I just stood there shaking my head. You're a persuasive salesman but I don't think you prevailed!
    I must say, the responses today really show what a crazy, caring bunch we are. Cold weather=cabin fever=boozy solutions=wacky humor!!!
    Hang in there, everybody! The little goldfinches are starting to show some yellow on their throats, so Spring WILL come!

  34. hummergirl 01/31/2014

    Wow, Jeff, now you are making me re-think those critters! Shark bites scare me every time! But thank you for the info. I just might have to look one up despite the danger!

  35. quinquek 01/31/2014

    Yes, I think you're right about your rosemary! At least you have some snow to dramatize and beautify your pain. Central VA is just bitter cold. Ale in front of the fireplace is my "go to"! Stay warm!

  36. jagardener 01/31/2014

    Hi tntreeman- bumper crop indeed.

  37. MichelleGervais 01/31/2014

    It's 27 degrees F here, and it feel downright WARM! No gloves, no scarf, no hat...

  38. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    janetsfolly, if you won't take the citrus, i have a deal for you on some coconut palms :) 2 for 1

  39. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Michelle, put on that hat! it might be a heatwave but you still need to be stylish :)

  40. MichelleGervais 01/31/2014

    I don't do hats. Never.

  41. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    it's the whole "hat hair" thing, isn't it

  42. Mciandella 01/31/2014

    Your trees look beautiful! I think I see your Redwoods in the background.
    You MUST know the secret to winter blues is ORDERING PLANTS AND SEEDS! I so far have ordered Sambucus racemosa "Lemon Lace" (google it - will put a smile on your face!) and 2 types of Mimosa seeds (one is Golden Mimosa -i forget what the other is!) I will keep those in pots and be giving extra away if they germinate.

    Also the new Fine Gardening magazine just came yesterday! So that helps!!

  43. Sculpturedale 01/31/2014

    The one slightly good thing for you... the snow actually helps save some plants survive through the freezing temps. It covers them like a blanket, keeping the windchill factor down. But... spring will tell the tale of who could cope and who gave up the ghost. Good luck!

  44. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Mciandella, i do make out wish lists in winter, LONG lists, then i let it rest and edit before i hit checkout. those are actually bald cypress in the background but i do have a dawn redwood and a coast redwood in the western border planting.

  45. MichelleGervais 01/31/2014

    Yes, subscribers should have gotten their new issue yesterdayish!! Did you notice--the front cover garden is a GPODer's! We fould Gail right here on the blog:

    Here's the web extra that goes along with the article on the front garden you'll find in the current issue:

  46. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    i did not notice the gpod connection, will read all tonight. it's like American Idol on here!

  47. GrannyMay 01/31/2014

    Jeff, looks like this winter is making a lot of folks unhappy, you're obviously NOT alone in seeking (Southern?)comfort. White wine for me, thanks! Definitely quirky weather practically everywhere. We had snow before Christmas, then it stayed mainly warmer and drier than normal, so we are already worrying about summer water shortages.

    BTW, my Rosemary bushes survived freezing many times, but one not-so-cold winter took about half of them, for unknown reasons. Keep the faith!

    Love the supportive comments and humour from everyone in our GPOD family.

    Gloria, you have my sympathy! Way to go on your positive attitude! Enjoy your family time with your sons.

  48. Kevlarster 01/31/2014

    Nice 'Winter Bones'

  49. bee1nine 01/31/2014

    Hi Jeff,
    You must admit, it's obvious you are certainly not ALONE in dealing with this winter cold! As so many fellow GPODer's
    and I'm sure others are supporting you. Truth be told, though
    no doubt the aftermath come this spring will show us what work lies ahead. Lets not worry too hard now- Have another
    shot of whiskey!! :)

    + tractor1- Can't help jump in and agree with you regarding
    propane shortage. What's next?!!


  50. sheila_schultz 01/31/2014

    What a wonderful snowy morning treat... lots of chatting amongst my GPOD friends!Denver is a winter wonderland this morning too, although I have to admit it was in the mid-50's yesterday! Sorry guys, but we actually needed the moisture so this is a good thing for us.
    Gloriaj, feel better and enjoy the gorgeous succulents that are grown so easily in CA!
    Go Broncos!

  51. User avater
    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt 01/31/2014

    Changed my screen name so people don't have to refer to me by my last name....I have not received my new issue yet. Perhaps the postman is somewhere, lost and frozen, with my issue. Reaching a feels-like-summertime 34° today, maybe it will arrive.
    Kelly Grummons sells cold-hardy cactus and agaves that do well in Colorado, and having lived in Denver for 5 years, their weather is some of the most yo-yo, unpredictable I have ever seen. In our wetter climes, dry and amazing drainage are a big plus. Sunshine and quick defrosting can do damage, too.

  52. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    i'm just going to call you Tim, i can't do all those underscores,,,,i'm a lazy typist

  53. wildthyme 01/31/2014

    Jeff, I wish we had some of that snow here in Montana . . . one more year with only 80% of average moisture so far. I'm finding I actually miss it. Maybe it's because without that snow cover I see all the things I didn't get done in the garden last fall!

  54. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    nina, it's only about 2.5 inches mostly all gone now. wish i could send some rainfall to you and to california, my friends there are stocking up on baby wipes so they can cut back on showers and have a little extra to water plants!

  55. MichelleGervais 01/31/2014

    Tim_Zone_Denial_Vojt, pretty soon we'll be celebrating YOUR article in FG!! Did everyone already know that we'll be featuring Tim's garden in the July/August issue of the magazine?

    And then Annek's in the September/October issue!

  56. satisfaction 01/31/2014

    It's good you're seeing the beauty of snow! Hope this cheers you up....It's a -11 degrees at 10:00 a.m. Windchill warnings of -35 to -45 the past week. There's over 2 feet of snow on the ground here and drifts many places of 4-5 feet I'm sure. The good news is...spring will come. Tractor1: Propane is $4.99 to $5.99 here unless you prepaid last summer at $1.39.

  57. cwheat000 01/31/2014

    Wow, I'm late to the party as usual-54 posts before me- almost record levels. Jeff, just goes to show ya we love you and feel your pain. You bring out the crazy in all of us. Our new dog, who was rescued from TN, is really not enjoying the cold here in CT. I opened the door the other night to let her out, and she looked at me like I was crazy. I'm laughing at her. I have always had big hunting dogs and they never missed an oppertunity to go out, regardless of the weather. I am not the type to put cute outfits on my dogs, but we have resorted to getting her booties. Her feet get cold and she won't poop. Gizmo, hysterical. Tractor 1, don't get me started on what's wrong will the world outside our garden sanctuaries. And tim-zone-denial- vojt, I love the new name.

  58. greengenes 01/31/2014

    Wow! Good morning to all of you wonderful gardeners! Iam so so sorry for all the harsh weather back there. I cant imagine what that must be like for so long of time. tntreeman, you have a whole lot of gardening friends out here. Iam one as well. As you send your comments and suggestions I feel as if I know you already. Idont know quite what else to say from all the other comments and I don't even have a good joke on hand. What has always helped me in our area of gray depressing days is seed catalogs and online garden shops. But it seems that you have already been there and done that. I wont tell you our temps here but it is unusual for us. I just hope next summer I wont be hurting for water. Dare I say that we cant have too much of a good thing because we end up not appreciating it when it comes around. But just think of all the new plants you will get to try! You are a great guy and have a great sense of humor and of course, the gardens look good even with the snow!

  59. GrannyCC 01/31/2014

    Lovely pictures Jeff. look forward to seeing your garden in the Spring and Summer. I feel lucky that we on Vancouver Island are having a warm winter. However they are talking lack of water already. Fortunately I have water barrels full, ready for Spring .Our local ski area farther north of me has had to close down. Keep your spirits up Spring will come.

  60. wittyone 01/31/2014

    Oh, Jeff, this looks all too familiar! Here in southern Indiana we've had snow, ice, howling winds, and sub zero weather since the beginning of December. If you haven't looked at the calendar lately it's almost FEBRUARY! Enough of this!

    About your figs. I have a brown turkey which I never got around to bundling up for the winter and so I figure the top will be shot for this year but am hoping that the roots will survive. I'm going to order a Chicago fig which supposedly can get through Chicago weather without protection so I plan on giving that a try this spring. They do say you should plant them in a more protected spot out of the wind----I've got the place all picked out. We'll see.

  61. GardenersWK 01/31/2014

    I hear no criticism from Tractor 1 on your winter garden views! All those evergreens, shrubs and grasses look lovely covered in snow.

    I don't get why and how Elmo got involved in the drinking business! Last show I watched it he was all about cookies. Or was that the Cookies Monster?
    I have some ideas for you: Start blogging! or easier: winter bird watching and photographing

  62. CJgardens 01/31/2014

    Jeff and fellow GPODers,
    It appears everyone is tired of winter and wants the opportunity to commiserate - me too!! It was above 20 degrees yesterday, so of course it snowed 5 inches. That's been my winter; very cold, snow, very cold, snow... I'm not very concerned about plants because we've had significant snow cover since December.
    Looking forward to all the issues of Fine Gardening, especially the issues including our friends.
    Jeff, thanks for braving the cold and taking more photos. Always enjoy your comments.
    Carol Jean

  63. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    carla, what kind of dog? and where in tennessee? so many dogs out there need adoption and a friend of mine adopted one from jamaica! a jamaican pie something or other. i couldn't believe it but it at least it has a home. i can feel everybody's frustration with winter and anticipation for spring. i, too, feel as if i know many of you and sure should we meet it would be like we just saw each other the day before BUT i have a big mouth so talking is never really a problem

  64. perenniallycrazy 01/31/2014

    Me too tntreeman! Speaking of lemons, got another stumper for you. I'm sure you have one for me. Chat later.

    This is such a sugary sweet post! Seems like GPOD has a massive cheering squad. Today is Chinese New Year so have a good one to all you who celebrate. For those who don't, you might want to have some fun and read your fortune for the year. It is the Year of the Horse (Wood).

  65. JonMoss 01/31/2014

    Hi TNT
    I've been chilling out in the tundra of northern Indiana where MizMoss is grateful for her hot flashes and the hip kids no longer display their underpants.

  66. AnneinQC 01/31/2014

    Gorgeous photos! I wish our snow (in Quebec) would stop at about 5 inches, perfect to show off the form of the plants. We have about 2 or 3 feet in some places so not much point taking pictures of half a shrub. I'm sure your plants will survive, snow insulates, I'm always happy for good snow cover (but yes it can weigh down foliage of some perennials). Take heart, here in QC it's 1C, that's above freezing!! But of course we're getting more snow, at least 6 inches. Yikes!

  67. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Satisfaction, if we got that much snow every building here would collapse and Atlanta would just have to be erased from the map

  68. Meelianthus 01/31/2014

    Hello Jeff ~ I'm sure you are tired of hearing how beautiful your snow pictures are - when you are freezing! but they are lovely and coming from an area that rarely gets snow, I do enjoy the beauty. I really feel for you in the freezing degrees days however, as I really hate the cold. Your gardens certainly will be a testament to the hardiness of plants. Our coldest this winter was one week in the 20s (which is rare for us) and I lost a few things. But most mornings now are med 30s with the days reaching mid 40s. Bundle up and dream of things sprouting up when your warmer weather returns (how long does your winter last anyway?!). Thanks for shivering - I mean sharing ^_^

  69. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Melianthus, we had one night of -8 without much snow so i don't really know what to expect and won't know the full exent until april i suppose. we RARELY get that cold and i don't remember it ever being this prolonged, it will be 55 tomorrow tho!

  70. BethinIowa 01/31/2014

    Hi Jeff, and welcome to my world. I actually love winter in Iowa, believe it or not, but my family in Texas says "Have fun shoveling snow! We'll stay here." Stay warm and know that warm temps are surely just around the bend in Tennessee.

  71. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    Beth, i suppose i would adapt,,,,,,,,,,,,,,eventually but i'm not ready to head north just yet

  72. wGardens 01/31/2014

    Jeff, you're last photo was the perfect ending to the rest of the photos! A great way to deal with this weather! :-) !! Have one for me too.

  73. user-1020932 01/31/2014

    wGardens you are always fun, i'll wait and have that drink with YOU

  74. wGardens 01/31/2014

    Hey, if I could hop a plane....!

  75. janeeliz 02/01/2014

    Jeff, you must admit...your garden looks just gorgeous with all the snow covering your many lovely trees and shrubs! In Maine it's been extremely cold and windy but we are in need of some more snow to keep our little plants warm...and for cross-country skiing. There has been a lot of time , too much, for dreaming and list making and re-making inspired by all the breath-taking garden catalogs that have been arriving throughout the month. Hang in there. It won't be long for you to be enjoying 'the real thing'.

  76. annek 02/01/2014

    My oh my, I'm soooo late in posting a comment. There's been a flurry of conversation going on and I almost missed it. T-man your photos are GORGEOUS! Love them, mainly because of their beauty, but partly because we haven't had those scenes in Montana this winter. Nina is right, we've just been underwhelmed with snowfall and all the glaring garden issues are waaaay too visible.

    I guess I'll just drown my sorrows....(does anyone have lemons?)...while reading my newest issue of Fine Gardening

  77. user-1020932 02/01/2014

    ok, you have all convinced me that snow is beautiful and ice is good!

  78. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/01/2014

    Ok, Jeff, now is the moment...if you are still awake...what can I say to make you come back on one more time and break this comment thread into the 80's. Maybe it's already happened while I'm puzzling over what to tease you about.
    Here's an off topic question...who you picking for the superbowl? We have to go with the Broncos and Peyton since he's been so good about coming back to the Knoxville area and doing good things for his alma mater University of TN. He really does seem to be a fine person.
    Your turn!

  79. user-1020932 02/01/2014

    ugh, i'm barely awake:) Cherry Ong needled me to come back and check your comment, Mike :)
    i like Peyton Manning as well.

  80. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/01/2014

    Yay...the 80's have been broken and now I can hit the sack and dream of spring gardening.

  81. perenniallycrazy 02/01/2014

    Nighty-night Jeff. Sweet dreams!!!

  82. annek 02/01/2014

    No's not 10:30 yet is it? Don't go to bed yet. (I can't remember if that's your witching hour or mine)

    And who've guessed Jeff could be convinced winter and snow is good?. I'd say he got cheered up proper!

    Cherry, you're good!, you're so good you're bad :-)

  83. perenniallycrazy 02/01/2014

    Wishing you the sweetest scented spring dreams meander1!

  84. annek 02/01/2014

    I was born in Colorado...wonder who I'm rooting for as Super Bowl winners. Go broncos!

  85. cwheat000 02/01/2014

    Jeff, our dog is a treeing walker coonhound named zoey and we got her off the website out of cookeville,TN. She is super goofy!

  86. cwheat000 02/01/2014

    The adoption people drove the dog up to Pennsylvania, and we took her from there. If I drove down to TN, I would definitely have had to have a whiskey sour.

  87. GardenSmiles 02/01/2014

    Jeff, Thanks for sharing the beautiful winter photos of your garden. I need to go back to see any previous ones you have posted, just new at going through this site. Our new name for our South Dakota garden is now Urban Farmstead! Answers to several questions (cwheat000, wittyone and greegenes) were posted on the SD GPOD in case they see this. We stayed up through the night during winter storm Atlas saving our trees and then shoveling the next several days. To celebrate we bought a keg of Newcastle and stuck it in the snow on the deck! You guys have way too much fun after reading through the comments. It would be great to have a GPOD Convention! We went to Seed Savers Exchange conference in Iowa last summer and thoroughly enjoyed every moment. You can never stop learning. Check out their site on Facebook, it's an amazing organization. Thanks again!

  88. user-1020932 02/01/2014

    "A Coonhound in Connecticut",,,,,,,sounds like a new Disney movie! glad you gave her a home, Carla.
    and Darlene,,a keg of Newcastle in the snow! what a girl!!!

  89. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/01/2014

    Well, well, here we are at comment #89 with me stepping back in so all it takes is one more contribution from someone and we'll break the 90 barrier. Ha, and then you know what the next goal will be...triple digits!
    Darlene (GardenSmiles) opened the door to a topic that I know we all have stories of...what was the worst (most memorable) assault from Mother Nature on your garden?

    For me, it was April, 2011 and the damage came from giant hail. The storm hit after dark and it was accompanied by very serious tornado warnings so we took refuge down in the basement for many hours. During one of the breaks in the barrage of bad stuff, I stuck my head out the front door and was shocked at the assault on my senses. There were piles of hail that were a foot high and the scent of fresh pine was almost overwhelming...the following morning, I understood the pine thing better. Almost every square inch of the ground was covered with ripped off pine and other tree branches. Most of my perennials were terribly beat up with the saddest thing being that the iris, peonies and hosta were in tatters....and I mean shredded beyond repair.

    The following morning, we basically approached clean up with an emergency room triage mentality...what seemed most needing our attention first? Sigh...there was so much destruction to choose from! However, for as wounded as my gardening sensibilities were, all it took was watching the news to put everything in perspective. Those in Alabama were hit with real devastation from the tornadoes with lives lost and homes destroyed.

    Anyway, that is my story. Any others with a tale to share?

  90. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/01/2014

    Ha, how typical...if I wasn't so wordy, I would have snuck in at # I'm a proud 90! I hope my years as a gardener will also reach 90!

  91. user-1020932 02/01/2014

    Mike, my horticultural horror story is ICE. throughout the night i would hear muffled thumps, we had maybe 6 inches of snow but i never got up to see about it. the next morning when i went to the kitchen i was greeted with my entire backlawn covered in not branches but entire limbs the size of trees throught the back acre and through the roof of the garage. everything was coated in at least 1/2" of ice, all shrubs and small trees were bent/twisted/frozen into contorted shapes and i couldn't do anything except wait for it to melt. talk about a BIG clean up job and a lot of corrective pruning. snow i can deal with but ice storms are life threatening to everything

  92. Yeddi 02/01/2014

    Are we aiming for 100?
    My email crashed yesterday so have only just read all the comments! What a wonderful start to the day. We ran away to Florida at the beginning of January and are heading back to Ohio next week to survey the devastation.
    For those of you worried about losing tender plants: I have grown Calla lilies outside for the past several years, usually cover them with about 6 inches of mulch. One spring they were uncovered to find a squishy green mush instead of fresh green shoots, but I raked the mulch back over and left them for another couple of weeks and Lo and Behold, fresh green sprouts poked through and the lilies were marvellous.
    I grown Amaryllis inside my front entry, plus bouganvillea and various succulents - this is my winter garden.
    I am a new GPODer and just love the whole experience.
    Thank you everyone. tntreeman - you are such a treat.

  93. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/01/2014

    93 comments is totally awesome but hitting 100 would be amazing. We have all weekend to make it happen. Today's temperatures here in TN definitely made me think spring will get here after all. I know it makes sense for Jan. to be cold but we've been a little spoiled the past couple of years. The last chunks of ice in my waterfall are finally melting. It was quite dramatic for a while there.

  94. GrannyMay 02/02/2014

    Well, just thought I'd pop back to see how far the conversation had progressed. Wow! Jeff and Michaele, here's to reaching 100! I'm not in the frame of mind to recall my garden disasters, but here is a little story about plant obsession.

    In April 2010 I visited a wonderful public garden called Abkhazi Gardens in Victoria, British Columbia. Unusual plants were carefully chosen and perfectly placed by its original owners - the results are magnificent. On this visit I was totally enthralled by the blooms of giant old rhododendrons, under-planted with masses of ferns and many other woodland plants, but what took my breath away were the trilliums! Swathes of unusual red Trillium kurabayashi beside billowing double white trilliums, all mingling with masses of our normal native Trillium ovatum. I had never seen anything like this! I was hooked!

    On my way home, I stopped at a specialty garden centre and asked if they had heard of Trillium kurabayashi. Well, they happened to have just one for sale - at $25.00!! Totally obsessed, I did not hesitate, and took my treasure home.

    Well, I don't have a perfect woodland spot for trilliums, but did manage to create a little area where I hoped it would thrive and maybe even multiply (we gardeners are always hopeful). That first year it barely survived. The second spring it emerged and was chewed off by deer, so I put a barrier around it. Next year the rabbits got it. Finally coming to my senses, I now dug it up and it is waiting to be donated to a home better suited to it than mine!!

  95. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/02/2014

    Oh, GrannyMay, I loved your story and, even though the ending wasn't a "happily ever after" the theme of garden obsessions is a great one. Should anyone else stop back in for a read, here's a recollection that's evidence that I have a serious addiction problem. spring a few years back, I was sooo excited about making my first of the season visit to one of my favorite nurseries. It's located 2 small towns away. Takes about 20
    minutes to get to.

    The sky was a bit threatening but I was not to be deterred because, hey, I had made up my mind and I was in the throes of plant joy. So, I'm happily driving over, have the extra anticipation pounding of the heart going on and was listening to the radio. Suddenly, the weather emergency signal noises started and the announcement was that there was a possible tornado sighting over in Rockford which was my destination.

    I had a lively conversation with my inner sensible self on how I should turn back and just do it another day but the fever overwhelmed any good sense. My hope was that if a tornado had touched down, that it had moved on and the nursery was untouched and I could still browse and peruse plant material.

    Now how pathetic is that?

    PS the nursery was fine and yes, I fed my inner monster and bought some plants!

  96. user-1020932 02/02/2014

    my question, Mike, did you have to click the heels of those snazzy red shoes to get home with the plants? :)

  97. annek 02/02/2014

    Ha! Mike, I wonder if your gardening story will seem perfectly rational to the fervent gardeners on this site :-). Who, in their right mind, would let a little tornado keep them from purchasing that perfect plant?

    Isn't there a TV show called 'Storm Chasers'? Call Hollywood! Mike has inadvertently created a theme for a new series....... 'Plant Chasers'

  98. user-1020932 02/02/2014

    AnneK, not sure i would want to chase Mike for that never before seen daylily, i hear she takes NO prisoners

  99. GrannyMay 02/02/2014

    Good morning! Have a great day everyone! Happy 100th!

  100. user-1020932 02/02/2014

    May you deserve a gift for being the 100th visitor!

  101. lilyday 02/02/2014

    I've been looking at the new issue this afternoon and came here to see the web extra and ended up here looking at the your beautiful garden. I will certainly look forward to seeing it when it's featured in the magazine later this year. I tend to push my zone a little so I am wondering how many plants I may lose this winter.

    Sue Ellen

  102. user-1020932 02/02/2014

    oh, lilyday, my garden won't be in the magazine that is going to be tim vojt and annek, i don't really have a garden i just have too many plants! with NO rhyme or reason to their placement :) but thanks!

  103. lilyday 02/02/2014

    That's what I get for skimming the comments too quickly, but from the pictures I've seen here you have way more than just a lot of plants.

  104. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/02/2014

    So, Jeff, no snazzy red footwear on this girl (ha, no matter what the occasion)'s all about mud laden old sneakers. Of course, it only takes about a week for any of my gardening sneakers to look instantly aged. They tromp, stomp, scrape, know the story.
    And. Annak, Jeff is right about me and my daylilies...I have a hunger...for me, they are like the "my Precious" from Lord of the Rings. The only thing that keeps me under control is the astronomical price of the newest releases.

  105. GrannyMay 02/02/2014

    Thanks Jeff, my prize is reading GPOD daily.

    Meander1 (aka Michaele, aka Mike) I think Jeff was hoping to see you scurrying along the yellow brick road with a load of fantastic daylilies you discovered somewhere over the rainbow!

  106. User avater
    meander_michaele 02/02/2014

    Cute image, GrannyMay...but with my track record, I would stub a toe, stumble and my precious daylilies would be scarfed up by all the munchkins.

  107. GardenSmiles 02/02/2014

    Jeff, So very sorry about your trees. Ice storms are awful, they leave you helpless. We certainly can relate here in South Dakota. They had an ice storm on the eastern side of the state that destroyed so many trees. Our winter storm Atlas (western SD) in early October was heavy snow, but the leaves were still on the trees. We spent all night getting snow off our few trees and saved them. We hauled ten pickup loads of branches from ours and a few close neighbors. The city had the recycle site set up very well and our cement plant will use the ground up remains for burning in their kiln. We would have been overwhelmed with compost at the landfill otherwise. The livestock losses in the area were horrendous too.

    Looking forward to Spring! Our tomatoes are sprouting now! The pepper and zinnia seeds are next to plant. Darlene

  108. GardenSmiles 02/02/2014

    P.S. It's Guinness Extra Stout today, no Bud Light thank goodness. Paul is an Irishman. Go Broncos!!

  109. user-1020932 02/02/2014

    that clinches the deal, GPOD convention at Darlene's! she always has the best beer

  110. perenniallycrazy 02/03/2014

    Reporting back and hoping to be Triple One (111). That was a long way to scroll to the bottom of the page! How's the Superbowl going GPODers? Since we are in close proximity to SEA, we'll have to cheer for the Seahawks. Enjoy the Superbowl!

  111. terieLR 02/03/2014

    Wow Wee! What a fun way to finish up the weekend. This is certainly more entertaining than the Super Bowl was. I'm not sure if my sleeping husband could hear laughter through the walls but our cats are quite amused with my outbursts. So glad I had the chance to check in on you all and I'm certainly looking forward to reading FG's featured GPOD articles. Front cover – go Gail!

    I don't do hats either Michelle. Can't wait to hear all about your weekend. Jeff, no doubt you have been cheered. We all were.
    Glasses raised.

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