Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Beginning of Winter in Southern California

For me, the winter season starts with Thanksgiving.  This is probably because year-end holiday preparations crank up in earnest at this time.  It certainly has little to do with the weather here in southern California or the seasonal demarcations on the calendar.  Although the days are shorter and the nights are colder, we don't get the freezes that signify the onset of winter elsewhere and our days are still relatively warm.  It was in the mid-70s today, perfect for running pre-Thanksgiving errands and doing a little gardening.

November also usually brings the start of our short rainy season.  While we got some drizzle in October, those events barely registered on the rain meter.  We got our first "real" rain last week, three quarters of an inch according to my rain meter.  That was enough to justify turning off the automatic irrigation system, at least temporarily.  It filled my rain barrel too.

Rain flowing down the rain chain outside the dining room window

I caught an unexpected rainbow over the LA harbor at the end of last week's rain

Another rain event was predicted for Thanksgiving but, unfortunately, that forecast has been rescinded.   I fear we may be in for another dry year.

To put myself in a winter mood in spite of warm dry afternoon, I constructed 2 winter-themed pots to stand immediately outside the front door.   I can't say that the idea was original - I copied winter scenes created in containers by the staff at Roger's Garden.  I even picked up my "trees" there on my brief visit last weekend.

Here's Roger's creation:

And here are mine:

Pot #1, planted with 'Goodwin Creek' lavender, white cyclamen, Cuphea 'Itsy White', Alyssum 'Snow Crystals', and Senecio cineraria 'Silverdust' (Dusty Miller)

Pot #2 with the same plants

I even gussied up my gargoyle for the winter season with a collection of Magnolia leaves and seedpods gathered from the front lawn:

The gargoyle will get a red satin ribbon around his neck when Christmas gets close and a gnome (or 2) may appear with the pine boughs but, for now, this is it for my winter decorations, unless you count the Christmas cactus I found in full flower in a neglected area of my garden today - it's now on the side patio where it can be properly admired.

Schlumbergera x buckleyi (aka Christmas Cactus)

Best wishes to all for a happy Thanksgiving!  I hope you enjoy the start of the winter season, no matter how winter is served up in your area.


  1. i do like your winter pots Kris, elegant! Have a fabulous Thanksgiving Day!

  2. Happy Thanksgiving, Kris! I'm happy that you've finally gotten some measurable rain. Your winter pots turned out quite nice.

  3. Happy Thanksgiving and nice job on the containers!

  4. WE got a bit of rain this morning, so the sprinklers will stay off a few more days (Yay!). Did you get any? Good looking pot, and the Shlumbergera is a beauty.

    1. Yes! We got about 1/2 an inch. It was a big surprise given that the weather forecasters had discounted the chance of rain.

  5. You have spectacular views from your place! Have I mentioned (in the last five minutes) how envious of your gorgeous winter weather I am?


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