Friday, August 17, 2007

Henry was no fool...

"Summer afternoon – Summer afternoon…the two most beautiful words in the English language."
Henry James
British (US-born) author (1843-1916)


After three evenings of rain, it was actually a little chilly tonight. If you can call 63 degrees chilly in the middle of summer. But it gave me a hint of what's to come, and I decided to look back at what was - last winter.

This is the large blue spruce in my front yard, note the neighbor's white SUV parked on the street in front of it...
Same tree last Christmas, big white lump to the side is neighbor's SUV.

The front bed yesterday.....
The front bed in December.

Steps leading down to the lower garden...
Those indentations in the snow are the steps in December.

Rocker on front porch....
Rocker on front porch at Christmas.

Front walk a couple of weeks ago...
Front walk at Christmas.

Wrought-iron railing above lower garden in June....
Wrought-iron railing last winter.

Terrace garden in August....
Terrace garden in December.

Adirondack chair in lower garden in June...
Adirondack chair in same spot at Christmas.

Guara lining driveway in July...
Guara under drifts of snow along driveway on a sunny day in December.

Rose of Sharon in August...
Rose of Sharon in December.
Looking east from my driveway toward neighbor's SUV...
Neighbor's SUV put to the test.
Faux Gloire de Dijon rose in streetside bed...
Tip of faux Gloire de Dijon poking up above drift.

Okay, that was a little frightening, wasn't it? Repeat after me, "Summer afternoon, summer afternoon"......

37 comments:

Zoey said...

It does look beautiful though, doesn't it?

Ouch!

Don't slap me across the face like that! I won't swear again. I promise.

Carol said...

Yes, that was frightening. I feel all cold and afraid now after seeing those. Summer afternoon, summer afternoon, and why doesn't LostRoses put the adirondack chair away for the winter? Summer afternoon, summer afternoon, I'm packing my bags this winter and moving to a place called "summer afternoon".

Carol at May Dreams Gardens

Annie in Austin said...

Boy, Lost Roses - I used to live with the snow just fine - but don't know if I could do it again. Your photos are daunting!

On the other hand, for us in Texas the word summer afternoon usually means 'inside the airconditioning' - and I look through the window, seeing my patio table unused in the sun the way you look at your chair in the snow.

We love to eat or read at that table in late fall and early spring, but in Summer we only sit there at night with citronella burning around us.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Pam/Digging said...

As Annie said, "summer afternoon" has unpleasant connotations for gardeners in Austin. Hot, hot, hot! And humid. Too hot to be outside, too hot to even sit on a shady screened porch. I'm counting the days until fall.

I do see how that much snow brings a chill into your heart though. I've never lived anywhere that got more than an inch or two of snow once a winter---at most. While I'd love to have your cool, dry summer, I don't think I'd trade winters with you.

However, several of your winter-garden pics are very beautiful, especially that blue spruce and the Rose of sharon under a blanket of snow.

Bev said...

Oh..Lost Roses!! Why did you have to remind me??? Actually, that was a great idea for a post and beautifully done. The blue spruce in winter looks like an old dame in her ermine cloak, ready for the opera. I love the rocking chair with snow...great photo, as are all of them. The Rose of Sharon has lovely winter interest and shape. Good job!

LostRoses said...

Zoey, you know better! But I forgive you.

Carol, it's only plastic and I like looking at it, even in the winter. Besides, I'm too lazy to put that kind of stuff away. I think that place called "summer afternoon" is in San Diego in the winter.

Annie, good point! Whereas my shady back porch is a refuge from the heat of the house (no air-conditioning) on a summer day, I wouldn't relish the thought of sitting in the hot sun. I've forgotten what it's like to live in a hot, humid climate in the summer!

Pam, you're making me admit that Zoey was right because a lot of those winter scenes are really beautiful! Last winter was unusual for us and we really aren't used to much snow, certainly not hanging around for weeks on end as happened this year. I think once you get out of snowy climates, you certainly wouldn't be eager to return!

LostRoses said...

Bev, an old dame in her ermine coat- I love that imagery! I think it was Mary at Mary's View who encouraged me to make a post like this and I just had to match up some photos. Made me wish my photo folders were a little more organized!

Mary C said...

Lost Roses - your snowy photos reminded me of some snowy days we had when once upon a time we lived in Denver and Castle Rock. I remember the last time I saw a lot of snow in Castle Rock was Palm Sunday 1974 - just a couple months before we moved to California. What I hated most was having to drive in that stuff. But I really enjoyed your contrast between this summer and last winter. Great photos. Thanks for the trip down memory lane. ;-)

Mary said...

Fantastic post! I remember those photos, Lost Roses. When you were having snow to the roof, I was having relatively mild temps. Soooo, we all have our share of the worst. You had yours and now I'm having mine :o)

Your gardens are spectacular. Enjoy those nice temps. Don't tell me you've opened your windows to let the breeze cool you... :o)

Katie said...

I love before and after shots. Very cool.

In a naive way, it makes me wish that we got a teensy bit of snow here in Northern California....just a teeny bit!

Catherine said...

Wonderful post!~ Fun seeing diffrent season's /before and after shots.. Not looking forward to winter and snow...but it was kinda nice looking at the snow after all the heat we have had...reminded me maybe wasn't so bad,when the alternative is FREEZING COLD!! And no pretty flowers ! Enjoyed your post!!

Apple said...

Nice comparison series. I enjoyed every other picture :) I am so not ready to think about winter yet.(I actually have a tarp over the snowblower so I don't have to look at it.) I'm hoping we have lots of lovely summer afternoons left!

Bob said...

Lostroses, great before and after shots. It's nice to know that you'll still have some lovely days to enjoy before winter takes hold and more beautiful summer afternoons after winter releases its hold.
Here's wishing you many more summer afternoons and the longest Indian Summer on record:)
Take care, BOB

Phillip said...

It sounds like you are having great weather. We had our 12th day yesterday of over 100 temps (they say the only time that has happened before was in 1980). No relief in sight! I'm watering just to keep my garden alive. I love the snow photos!

LostRoses said...

Mary C., I bet you really don't miss those snows much, do you? And Castle Rock always seems to get even more than we do. If we could just stay at home and not have to drive to work it would be most enjoyable though!

Mary, the windows have been wide open here since May. I know they say to close your windows and drapes when it's so hot, but I can't stand to be "hermetically sealed"! Only in the winter.

Katie, a teensy bit of snow would be nice for everyone! We don't normally get "everlasting" snows like last winter so it was a novelty for us too. Thanks for visiting!

Catherine, it was rather startling for me to see the contrast too, how quickly we forget! And I hate having to rely on grocery store bouquets for a flower fix in the winter. Thanks for stopping by!

Apple, with the kind of snows you have to look forward to in your area, I'd have a tarp over the snowblower too! I sold my snowblower several years ago because I rarely used it. I was regretting that decision last winter!

Bob, yes to Indian Summer, as long as the frost that precedes it doesn't kill all the flowers! Summer afternoons are really the best around here, and yes, I'm looking forward to many more before the season's over.

Phillip, those strings of hundred-degree days can be pretty daunting, especially with your humidity. I have nothing but admiration for the gardeners who struggle to keep things going in those conditions. Don't forget to cool yourself off with that hose!

David in Greensboro, NC said...

I would LOVE to have a snow like that! We've lived in our house for 2 winters and have yet to see what it looks like in snow. (And you know, here in NC, everything closes and we stay home from work at the mere mention of flurries!

LostRoses said...

David, you'd be surprised how often things close here when there's a big storm - which is fine with me since I hate driving in it. I think we got 4 or 5 snow days out of successive storms last winter which is most likely a record for us. I hope you at least get some flurries come winter!

rusty in miami said...

Great posting, with 100 degree temperature outside and a heat index off the chart today it was so refreshing reading your Blog.

Layanee said...

Great job on those pictures! Makes you appreciate the NOW!

LostRoses said...

Rusty, glad I could help out with cooling you off today! Maybe the Miami weathermen should run snow pictures to subliminally influence people baking in the heat!

Layanee, it's funny how much I dream about NOW when it's winter (THEN)!

MrBrownThumb said...

I'm soooo not ready to see any snow on a garden blog. I hope you didn't start a trend here. :)

snappy said...

Lost Roses,Im amazed you took the same photos eight months apart.did you look at the Snow pictures then reshoot where you took them?
The snow is very white though, but what is more amazing is how much grows when the snow is just a memory.It is so lush and full of growth.
The British summer has been rain, more rain, and more rain.Only April was sunny.Good year for plants that like their feet wet!

Dianne said...

Well the snow is pretty and like a big blanket. Wouldn't it be neat to have one day in the summer when it snowed? Just to be able to stand out in it to cool off. ; )

Marie said...

Oh no, I can't stand it! Take it away, PLEEEASE!!!

LostRoses said...

mrbrownthumb, I guess this is the only time people want to see snow, during the hot season! I actually did see a few snow "remember last winter" shots on some other garden sites, so I didn't start it!

Snappy, that's just what I did! I actually had several I'd already taken earlier in the summer and what I didn't have, I just went out and reshot. Some of them are from a slightly different perspective but you get the idea!

Those cool British summers! But not usually so much rain, right?

Dianne, I think a town in California did that one year - brought a bunch of snow in so people could play in it and cool off. Not a bad idea!

Marie, we have to steel our minds against it, but it's coming anyway. Just not too soon, I hope!

chuck b. said...

Chilling!

kate said...

I am so trying to live in the moment these days, willing the last days of summer to be warmer. Tonight I sit wrapped in a down comforter in my back garden ... it is about 55f at the moment and my attempts to stencil on the garage wall lasted for about five minutes.

No, please, no snow for a long while yet! Your snowfall last year was truly scary...

Lynne said...

They are all beautiful. I really do love the seasons.

LostRoses said...

chuck, I think I jinxed our weather. Brr, I'm sitting here in long sleeves and sweats.

Kate, yes we absolutely need to live in the moment, the seasons will change all too soon! Those tastes of fall are upon us too. Are you going to finish the wall stenciling before winter?

Lynne, Yes, I agree. And how would we have spring bulbs and peonies without those cold temps?

Gotta Garden said...

I need to get around more as yours are the first snow-in-summer pictures I've seen! Lovely contrasts and good reminders to appreciate each day. We've been having cooler weather of late (nice) and everyone seems to be thinking fall (especially the stores...but then, they're always really early)...but, I'm thinking September people, remember?? Usually pretty hot around here..

We didn't have air conditioning when we lived in Washington (state). Were told we didn't need it (and it didn't come with the house...but then, neither did screens and you sure need those...); however, when we sat under fans or retreated to the public library to cool off, I thought shoulda, woulda, coulda. However, maybe your elevation and just plain good temps make it unnecessary for you. And, you don't get our power bills!

Anyway, love how the snow is all white and pretty...not brown, grey and yucky. Snow closes everything around here, but I don't mind...of course, I don't have to think about that until, Jan-Mar...right?

Oh yeah, one other thing (I do go on), also when we lived in WA, our neighbors' grown children always parked in front of our house, not theirs (or in their driveway where there was plenty of room). Never, not once. One left his truck there endlessly and only moved it (for a couple days) when I went over and complained I had nowhere to put out my trashcans...It was so annoying. It looked like we had company...always. But, what can you do? (Move...which we did...well, not for that reason, though!)

Enjoyed your post!

chuck b. said...

After your flamingo, and now this, I'm starting to think 'freaking out your readers' is one of your favorite things, Lost Roses. What's next?

LostRoses said...

GottaGarden, it does seem like the summer weather pattern is breaking up - mornings and evenings are cooler now. As for no air conditioning, I do my share of sweltering but it's nothing like the folks who have high humidity, (which I keep reminding myself)!

I'm glad you didn't have to move because of your neighbor's parking habits! My neighbor's frontage is on an inside curve and they have virtually no parking space but they do have a big driveway. Good thing, since they have one teenage driver already and in another few years their triplets will be driving too. I think the number of vehicles will multiply!

chuck, I'm pretty much out of ideas. I think I'll use you next.

CountryGirl said...

It is great to enjoy the four seasons. Winter does have it's beauty as you captured in your photos but I wish it didn't last so long! Will you recycle this post in February or March when I've had enough of winter to give me hope again, lol?

Sissy said...

I haven't been able to check your blog in months and the first time I do, you have this stuff on it??
SHEESH!!!
I hate that stuff!! The green is beautiful, though! Your gardens are wonderful!

LostRoses said...

countrygirl, recycling this in February or March isn't a bad idea, I guess it will work both ways, won't it? Clever!

Sissy, sorry I almost scared you off! I took a peek at your site and I'm happy to see you are celebrating August and not winter to come. I promise I won't do it again!

Kerri said...

Don't do this to me!!!!
Wonderful comparison pictures (in spite of the fact that they're stirring up unwanted thoughts of things to come). Yikes, you get lots of snow! But your yard sure is gorgeous in the summer. Well, it's pretty in the winter too..but you know which season I prefer!
We've had very welcome rain here yesterday and this morning.
Summer afternoon, summer afternoon..... :)

lisa said...

I really enjoyed this post, but then, I actually enjoy the snow! The changes are cool...makes me appreciate the garden all the more.