Repainting the landscape

Snow accents our neighbors' beautifully hardy evergreens, January 2010.

Snow accents our neighbors’ beautifully hardy evergreens, January 2010.

“Nature has many scenes to exhibit, and constantly draws a curtain over this part or that. She is constantly repainting the landscape and all surfaces, dressing up some scene for our entertainment. Lately we had a leafy wilderness; now bare twigs begin to prevail, and soon she will surprise us with a mantle of snow. Some green she thinks so good for our eyes that, like blue, she never banishes it entirely from our eyes, but has created evergreens.”Henry David Thoreau

As I write this (a little over two weeks before it is scheduled to be published) there is a pristine blanket of white outside, spreading over every unpaved bit of ground, unspoiled as yet by footsteps.  This recent snow was unusually powdery, blowing about and leaving drifts against the windowsills, a rare sight here in Virginia.

Though the snow is dazzlingly bright in the sun, I am glad for the remnant of blue and green in the landscape; a sky that looks remarkably like the ones we see in springtime, and evergreens that seem bundled up with their thick foliage, unharmed by the single-digit temperatures of the past 24 hours.

I hope we all hold within our imaginations the blues and greens of warmer days, a sort of internal immunization against the gloom that can overtake us in winter.  How delightful to have the beauty of snow along with just a hint of the colors that will delight us in the springtime days that lie ahead!

One year ago today

Impressions of beauty and delight


  1. sarvjit

    Nature’s simple, beautiful and efficient. She’s the best teacher.

    • Thank you, Sarvjit – I hope to be learning lessons for many more years!

  2. Heba

    How lovely!
    Actually, I imagined every word while reading 🙂
    We went out today…and as soon as I felt the sunshine over my face, I felt better already. We don’t have snow over here, but it’s still so nice to see water, greens and the sun 🙂

    • Hi Heba, I’m so happy you had a lovely day of sunshine. It always amazes me how much my mood is affected by a sunny day. The greens and blues and other colors of the outdoors are too beautiful to capture in a picture but I keep trying! 🙂 Thanks for being here with us.

  3. I like simple…:)
    ps…at times the “like this” button is inactive…as now.~/

    • Hi Merry, I am sorry the “like” button wouldn’t work for you. I think you have to be signed into WordPress for it to be available. You don’t have to have a blog to have an account, but one benefit of being signed in is that you supposedly won’t see ads. Thanks for being here and for your comment!

      • Humm…thought I was signed in but…maybe not!

        • I’ve had that happen to me when I am signed in and still see ads, but usually it’s with a self-hosted blog (mine isn’t) — WordPress is hard to figure out sometimes, that’s for sure.

  4. Michael

    Spoke too soon about winter dalliance. The fountain at Seattle center, the ones the kids played in last week , is not frozen still and it’s 31 degrees out.
    I went to the Seattle garden show last night and saw some wonderful display gardens.
    They had several witch hazels in bloom and they were especially enchanting.

    • Thanks for the link, Michael. I enjoyed the video, especially on a cold day like today. I think Raynard said the Philadelphia Garden Show had the same theme this year (art) – probably some of the same vendors and speakers are featured on the east coast.

  5. Michael

    On the website you can look at garden winners from previous years. Last years winner was based on the Hobbitt movie and is especially captivating. Lots of awesome creativity here.
    It’s winter here, again. No snow however.

    • Hi Michael, thanks for the link – I wouldn’t have noticed the section for previous years. I loved the Hollywood gardens, not just the Hobbit but all the others including the one for “the Lost Gardener” (several movies) and “Star Wars.” It’s winter here, too…Jeff was just saying how glad everyone will be to see spring this year!

  6. raynard

    Julia for some reason”I just had a “fill in the blank” moment” “O.C.D, Senior blah blah , yadie yadie yadie. I seen yesterday, Christmas trees piled up by the dumpster outside. The picture you show does remind me of the forest in Germany.( Glad no wild boars popped out). be blessed

    • Raynard, it always makes me a little bit sad to see Christmas trees piled outside after Christmas. One of the things I like about having an artificial tree (something I once said I’d NEVER do) is that we don’t have to throw it away. Around here they compost them; probably they do that too where you live. But it’s still sad to see them piled up waiting to be taken away. I am thankful we do not have any wild boars around – they might make my walks too exciting! I know this will be a busy week for you – hope everything goes smoothly with travels, cake-baking etc.!

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