Winter in Our Garden and Beyond

Ugli fruit on tree in winter garden
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So long winter!  Although all seasons have their beauty, winter isn’t my favourite. It’s a long, dark, cool, wet time of year here. As soon as fall begins to fade, it feels like I’m already looking forward to spring. But winter we must. Come on in for a virtual visit to our home garden with our 2021 winter news, behind the scenes happenings, and family updates from Green in Real Life.

Frost groundcover plants

Seasonal Success Stories and Top Crops

Citrus are the stars of our winter garden, with the oranges, grapefruit, and ugli fruit finally starting to come into their own now that they’ve had a few years to settle in. The lemons are also doing well. I made limoncello last winter and gifted it to the neighbours, jokingly nicknamed  Limited Edition 2020 Lockdown Limoncello. It seems that fate might have the last laugh as we’re preparing to make another batch during another lockdown. Or perhaps our neighbours might get the giggles instead. It’s pretty strong stuff!

Seasonal Failures and Flop Crops

My winter garden this year has been far less productive than usual. Neighbourhood cats repeatedly destroyed all of my seed plantings. After several dug and pawed replants, I gave in and purchased seedlings, but even those required several replanting rescues despite attempts with covering and netting. At the end, I had to fix down my frost cloths so they couldn’t slip under and resort to stapling mesh fencing across the top of some of the exposed beds. I really love animals, but I wasn’t impressed. If you have any tips to try, let me know before I start the spring crop rotations. 

The replanted seedlings are now big enough to safely grow, but are far behind our usual winter growth and harvest schedule. It’s still a treat to be able to snip fresh coriander from the winter garden, though. Worth the effort. The bigger veggies should plump up quickly for late harvests of cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, beets, and other winter veggies now that the weather is warming. Then it will be time to rotate into the tastier plantings of summer. 

Kowhai tree in winter blossom

Winter Chores

Other than the citrus and veggie beds, winter in our garden is mostly occupied with clean-up, pruning, and other off-season chores. We’re going to be doing some hardscaping and reorganising of the edible garden areas when the weather warms and dries, so right now there’s planning to be done.

Our Furfamily

Humphrey shares my dislike of winter. He’s not keen on cold wet walks either, but every day we adventure rain or shine. He celebrated his 7th birthday this winter, and I love that little rascal more than I can express. He’s a light on the greyest of winter days.

Plum tree blossoms

Looking Ahead

Although we had some very frosty nights, winter was milder than usual here. The trees were keen to transition into bud, and already our plums are in full blossom and buzzing with bees. Spring is springing, and the new season awaits. Drop by our Instagram to check in on how things are growing in our garden, and I hope to see you again here on the blog sometime soon.

Green in Real Life winter 2021 garden update

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