Although this isn't the prettiest time of year in the garden, it may well be the most optimistic.
January is the time to stay in the warm and plan, to dream, to remember what worked well last year, to forget the heavy work and simply enjoy the prospect of things looking good.
I am not shy to admit that with age I am becoming lazy! I look for easier solutions. That's one of the reasons I use so many perennials in the garden: plant them, water them, a few kind words and they are away!
The snowdrops and daffodils are already pushing through the grass ready to flower in February and March. Last Autumn I was really lazy and didn't lift the dahlia bulbs, but the winter has been so mild that I'm not too worried.
I have to check my books, but I fear I've left it too late to divide any peonies, so they'll have to stay put for another year too.
Very sadly we have lost this wonderful rambling rose, I planted a replacement nearby at the beginning of the winter, we shall see how that gets on.
Of course some perennials are a bit too sure of themselves and can easily get out of hand, like the purple flowering sage in the potager;
others are real show-offs, like these perennial poppies; they brag and stand straight as possible, willing to do anything to draw attention to themselves, blissfully unaware that they'll soon die back and leave a space for someone else to move into.
... and do I have a favourite? well , I try not to let it show, but against our old walls I do love the towering spikes of the delphiniums and foxgloves. Every year I sow and plant a few more, no doubt this year I'll do the same .... and dream a little longer .....
Hope your week is going well, and you're finding time to dream a little too!