IMG_4276They said it would be a cold one. So far, it has been mainly wet and windy (hence the out of focus), but February sometimes has a sting in the tail here. I think that is what happened in 2013 and that went on and on.

Rose Cubana showed no sign of wanting to go dormant when I took this photo in early December. When I checked again this afternoon, in the interest of  science, it had shed some leaves and was looking generally less awake, which is a good thing.

There will be two weeks or so of moderate night frost, said the forecast. I have wrapped the pots up rudimentary. I might finally be able to get an idea of how cold the balcony gets compared to the official temperature; I have an unwitting guinea pig in this sturdy sweet pea, that still refuses to give up.

IMG_4265It almost feels cruel, because it is such a survivor. All of the sweet peas were strangled by a mysterious vining weed and when I pulled it all up in the end, there were still signs of life in one pea shoot, so I left it. It’s the thin stem that hangs over the edge of the pot and loops up – all the other visible greenery grows from this withered little stalk.

img_4366.jpgMeanwhile, basking in the stairwell, the pelargoniums are still going strong – in a gnarly, woody way.












Last Christmas, I picked up some seeds from the black bat or devil flower, tacca chantrieriin the Natural History Museum in Vienna (from the gift shop – I didn’t pilfer them from a display). Read the rest of this entry »

Two magnificent early flowers on the clematis, as the rest of the vine continues upwards. Read the rest of this entry »

Since I took the “feet up” approach to gardening, most of the action is happening elsewhere: blossom on trees, tulips and forsythia. The balcony is stuck in its eight-months-a-year colour range of green to maroon. Read the rest of this entry »

Interest was lukewarm at the annual disrobing-of-the-balcony event. Read the rest of this entry »

img_3965A ranunculus and twigs salvaged from the office flower arrangement on Friday afternoon. Gather ye rosebuds while – and where – ye may. Read the rest of this entry »

Apart from Lupo – good flowerer, attracts bees, hips look nice in a flower arrangement and light up winter – is there anything this rose can’t do? Read the rest of this entry »

img_3823 Read the rest of this entry »

img_3794 Read the rest of this entry »

IMG_3700The Cubana flowering tirelessly. Read the rest of this entry »