February Snow

February is typically the coldest month of the year in the UK and the beginning of this February was no different. It brought the first snow of Winter 2018/2019 and for a few days, the garden was blanketed in a billowing and pristine white.

It’s been a couple of years since we had a “heavy” snowfall and it came as a sudden surprise to me that snow carries weight, it’s heavy stuff. I was worried for many trees and shrubs in the garden that had grown rapidly in the fertile soil and perhaps in their race to shoot upwards, hadn’t put as much into the strengthening and ripening of the wood as they should have so that it mightn’t take much to cause damage.

So that I could sleep easier, we knocked the worst of the snow off the camellias and the bay and thankfully, there weren’t any signs of broken branches and limbs that I could see, just splayed edges that I hope will straighten up again.

After the snowfall, we had clear skies and stunning wall-to-wall sunshine (which isn’t for very long in a northern hemisphere winter), but there was enough heat to quickly melt the snow and erase any trace it was ever there after 48 hours.

Now, at the end of February the weather couldn’t be any more different. We have actually sat outside in the sunshine, enjoying lunch on the patio while the sun shone and there is real heat in that sun now, despite it still being relatively low in the sky – sun hat definitely needed. The greenhouses need to be open as soon as they come out of shade and it’s triggering the plants to start budding up. We’ve even had the curry-leaf plant (the real, edible one) out!

I’m still far behind on winter jobs and the most urgent one at the moment is the rose pruning and hedge trimming. I also need to make up my mind about what I want to get done in the garden this year and plan accordingly, decide which areas I want to clear, which borders I want to dig, and so on. However, it all seems so far away and while the warm sun shines in what’s supposed to be Winter, my motivation to get on with the business of gardening melts away as quickly as the snow.

9 Comments


  1. Sunil, your posts and photos are like an escape for me from my desk. This one with the particularly beautiful images came a just the right time.

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    1. Thank you, Sean, that’s very kind.

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  2. Glad to see you back, Sunil. LIke you we had a fall of snow, but gone in 48 hours. Now the garden is full of miniature daffs and primroses, plus an early flowering cherry is going all out! Last autumn I make the decision to leave all the fallen leaves across the borders, just to see if it made any different in weed control. Well! it seems to have done just that i’m pleased to say, so I shall do that this year as well.

    This year I decided to have a go at potatoes….. so when I found a special offer for 3 large potato buckets, 18 tubers (6 of each kind) and fertilizer for less than £20, I went for it. I’ll let you know!!

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    1. Hello Mrs. Mac, it sounds like it’s going to be chips round your place later in the year! I can’t resist tidying leaves etc up off the borders and do that when cutting back plants and pruning the shrubs. I love the “neat look” of a freshly mulched border. I don’t get much in the way of weeds for the established borders because the planting is so dense.

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  3. We’ve had snow this winter, too. We haven’t had loads at once but several inches here and there, which is enough to close school and let me sleep in! Yay! The garden always does well with a blanket of snow.

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    1. Yay for Snow Day, Tammy! We’ve got some flattened plants that need to pick themselves up but other than that, we’re marching on (as it were) with Spring and as usual, I’m really behind on the winter jobs.

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  4. Your snowy garden looks lovely. We usually have lots of snow in winter here, and this year is no exception. (Our first snow came in October!) Snow is welcome in our cold climate because it insulates plants from frost and thaw cycles and because it provides much-needed moisture as plants emerge from dormancy in spring.

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    1. Hello Jean, I remember seeing your photos of huge mounds of snow piled up beside the drive, they must take so long to thaw! The snow is very picturesque but I think we only have one or two snowfalls per winter here, lasting less than a week altogether. The rest of the time is usually wet, cloudy and windy.

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      1. LOL, We have about two snowfalls a week here during the winter months (including one today).

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