'Tis the time of year that proclaims that winter is about to begin. I know it must be December because my neighbor's cherry tree is blooming. Right on schedule every year.
There will be cold weather (yes, we've had a few hard freezes already) and it will snow (yes, this happens about once a year) but as soon as I think I cannot spend one more dreary day wearing wool socks but still having cold feet, I see blossoms. The little heads of crocus come popping up. The daffodils smile yellow smiles and I know that even if a late snow shows up, it will melt quickly.
So her cherry tree is a reminder that spring is not so far away. The tree is simply planning ahead and getting herself dressed up a bit early. She will ruin her dress, (we know that) but she doesn't care. She will put on another in just a few months.
Other blooms in my December garden:
This is an ancient white camellia which came with our house. We prune its ten foot height occasionally but it is in such an inconspicuous location that we usually forget that we own it.
Yuletide camellias I've put by the front door.
The Obedient Plant I dug from a neighbor last spring has done perfectly in this confined location between the two driveways. If it becomes less than obedient I think I can easily limit the spread.
Winter Daphne by the front door. It will be the very best smell in my garden. I think it wins over its rival the gardenias by its timing alone. Who else can bring that smell in mid-winter? (Not yet in bloom)
Daffodil leaves. I hope they won't be bent, broken and yellow in the spring, or if they are, that they can be like the cherry tree next door and simply change to freshen up.