Winter makes the heart grow fonder


As I look at my snow-covered beautiful wildlife garden, it occurs to me that the winter season teaches us some important lessons about life.  At first glance, the landscape appears bleak and desolate.  But I prefer to reflect on the joys of the past year’s bounty of flowers and food, and the slumbering potential of next year’s garden.


Thanks for the memories

Winter is a great time to catch up on scrapbooks and photo albums.  Reviewing photos from my garden and flower beds helps to remind me which plants thrived and which ones struggled.  I spend the cold months planning my strategies for next year.  The lesson here – – learn from your experiences.

Milkweed seedpod

Milkweed seedpod

Save those seeds

I love to save seeds.  Tiny promises of new life just waiting for the right conditions.  I like to give them to newbie butterfly gardeners at my workshops.  I’m amazed that seeds manage to survive the harsh conditions of winter and sprout up in the spring as if nothing happened.  The lesson here — stay strong through the hard times and grow with renewed strength the first chance you get.

coral honeysuckle

coral honeysuckle

Bloom where you are planted

I adore my native coral honeysuckle.  It never fails to impress me.  My hummingbirds favor it over their sugar-water feeder all summer long.  And it still insists on blooming even on the last day of December!  The lesson here — give your best effort at all times.

coral honeysuckle berries

coral honeysuckle berries

It’s funny how such a small bit of color can cause an emotional response, but I feel a surge of joy in finding berries hidden in the snow.  It brings back childhood memories of stringing cranberries for the birds and hanging them as necklaces on snowmen.  The lesson here — remember to enjoy the simple pleasures in life (and feed the wildlife while you’re at it).


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  1. says

    Beautiful reflections Judy…my hummers prefer my coral honeysuckle as well…I have not taken time to save seeds in year’s past but it is part of what I want to do….play and find my way but it feels exciting to close the circle and make the cycle complete…from seed to seed!!
    Donna Donabella recently posted..A New Journey

  2. says

    Thanks for your photographs, Judy. I agree that It’s a great time to look back and look ahead and also a good time to appreciate the subtle beauty of winter. I’m especially glad for our backyard birds. They aren’t quite as colorful as butterflies and blossoms, however they certainly brighten these wintry days.
    Betty Hall recently posted..Winter solstice and winterberries


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