Goodness we are having a dismal time. Sally says that she received a text from a friend who is visiting Scotland describing our weather here as "Biblical". Spot on.
Today we have cold winds and horizontal rain, there is no way that I am venturing outside except to feed animals and stock up on logs.
Yesterday we had a brief glimpse of sunshine and I was able to get outside and look around at what is flowering. Jane Robertson also realised that sunshine is rare at this time of year and popped over to take some photos.
By far the best thing in the garden is a large clump of hellebores in one of the big borders. A few years ago a great local nursery near to us, Floreat Plants, closed down and I was able to buy lots of their seedlings and stock plants. The hellebores were largely unnamed and this is the first year that most of them have flowered. They are stunning.
This one has open flowers which don't droop down that much - it looks you in the eye. It is just amazing with the low sun shining through it - there are also darker purples which you can see in the background and some lovely whites with splashes of pink.
I'm not a great fan of the ruffly hellebores that are being bred now - I like mine straight and simple - but I love what breeders are doing to create such wonderful colours.
We picked this particular stem to experiment with how we might be able to make it last in a vase - I'll report on the results in the next Newsletter (Due out on Monday - click here if you want to Subscribe).
Time to chuck another log on the fire and do some sewing I think.
Thank you everyone for your kind words about Bix. My friend Nadja has said that we can take snowdrops from her garden to create a flowery carpet under the hazel tree where Bix is buried. It will be a fitting remembrance for a beautiful cat.