Winter Flowers

This deciduous Magnolia trees with saucer flowers is often called a Tulip Tree because of the shape and bring color of their flowers.

This morning’s early rain storm moved on leaving behind bright blue partly cloudy skies and lots of sunshine, a perfect backdrop for winter flowers. We were lucky to see some real stunners on our morning walk.

Deciduous Magnolia with saucer flowers are delicately scented.

While my dog is looking down, I look around, thankful to my neighbors for making our neighborhood such a beautiful place. I hope you’re reading this outside, enjoying the sunshine since rain is expected again later today. But that’s good, right? Because winter rain means more winter flowers will be coming our way soon!

To Bailey, this soggy, bright winter green grass smells even better after a few days of rain.
Here’s a wall of shade loving red Camellias that traditionally bloom in the winter. Originally from Asia, Camellias grow over a wide range of the country. They can be counted on to bloom when little else is flowering. Their pink, red, white or variegated blooms resemble roses, but alas, they are generally unscented. These formal double blooms are happy along a west facing wall getting shade in the morning and mild afternoon sun in the winter. The Huntington Botanical Gardens has thousands of Camellias of hundreds of varieties.  A stroll through through their Camellia groves at this time of year is well worth it.
There are literally hundreds of varieties of Camellias, but this single classic white is quite happy living along a north facing wall where it gets a lot of shade all year around.
This peony style is a perfect pink color and so a very popular Camellia. This is first of what looks like many what will bloom shortly. Recent rains have washed the leaves clean and shiny.
We’ve had to turn our camera to get a bug’s eye view of this downward facing Camellia and were pleased to captures this spectacular Phoenix Palm, also known as the Canary Island Palm, in the background.
The Arbutus is a stunning native to the eastern Mediterranean climate with evergreen leaves and ornamental bark. These delicate urn shaped flowers precede an edible fruit that looks like a prickly cherry. Birds really love this medium sized tree that can also be a bush.
Flowers aren’t the only spectacular sights in winter. The beautiful structure of this the structure of this Liquidambar, also known as American Sweetgum, can be full appreciated now that all the leaves have fallen. But not for long, small buds are already forming promising new leaves soon.
Closer to home, we have a yellow Lady Banks climbing rose, another reliable early bloomer, that is just getting underway. In a few weeks, the small spray roses will cover the side of the house.
Hardenbergia, also known as a lilac vine because of its clusters of sweat pea-shaped flowers, was planted by in our garden by Judy Horton to bloom in late winter or early spring. The leaves are evergreen.
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About Patricia Lombard

Patricia Lombard is the co-editor and publisher of the Larchmont Buzz. Patty lives with her family in Fremont Place. She has been active in neighborhood issues since moving here in 1989. Her pictorial history, "Larchmont" for Arcadia Press is available at Chevalier's Books.

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