Seven winters later it's hard to remember how we felt when all our pretties turned black and melted away from that unusual spell in 2010.
This winter has been like spring. More so than last year when we considered that one to be mild.
We've been able to have a few fires inside and outside, but not very many nights/days have been cold enough.
Mild mornings and evenings mean we spend a lot of time outside. We eat outdoors often. We prop our feet up and read and drink coffee. It is Central Florida's season to be completely comfortable outside.
Whether it's too cold or just right Florida's winter season is a time for Azaleas and Camellias. This garden has some ancient shrubs of each. To see them flowering makes the front garden feel like spring.
There are other plants that offer color in Florida's mild winter. Bromeliads love our mild weather. Many varieties color-up just for this time of year.
Begonias mixed with bromeliads add lots of pizzazz along my back walkway.
Winter is an excellent time for seasonal veggies. This year I'm only growing some heirloom kale and collard greens. But, oh my, are they yummy.
Even the butterflies think it's mild enough to keep hanging around.
The hardest part about the weather being so mild is trying to resist the temptation to garden like it's spring. I'm ready to cut every lanky and overgrown shrub back by February 1. It is advisable to wait until the last chance of frost date. I try to comply. Not so much because I think we might have some sudden freeze, but more so because the bushy shrubs protect the plants around them even when those temps drop into the 40's at night.
Truth be told, I haven't done very well adhering to those good practices with this spring-like weather. If all goes well, at least I'll be way ahead when spring does come around. Heck, it might be time to cut back again by that time.
They say it's winter, but the only clear indicator around here is the calendar. How is your winter going?
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