Santa Cruz Mountains
Between COVID and the coldness of winter, I’m happy staying in. But outdoors, in early February, magnificent magnolias begin their bright annual show.
Cold rain falls, and my Mirabelle plum loves it. With the chill factor, few bees visit, and only on sunny days. Yet this tree produces a bumper crop every summer.
The prettiest plum in my neighborhood. So many blossoms that it’s hard to take a photo that captures its essence. It’s infinitely more beautiful than my best shot.
My first mini daffodils popping up among the old sage stalks. They love the cold rainy days. Compared with larger species, they’re delicate and don’t last long.
My neighbor’s multicolor daffodils bloom earlier and last longer. They’re the first of many flowery displays that greet pedestrians on a corner well known to locals.
Later in the month, the pink and white magnolia gets incredibly bountiful. This tree has no skimpy years. Every February it’s glorious, the showiest tree on our street.
On a nearby street, an even more vibrant magnolia blooms. Though a bit scraggly, its gorgeous magenta hues cause passersby in cars and on foot to stop and admire.
What could be more classic than an iris in—winter? This one faces south, with a fence behind it reflecting warmth. Mine won’t bloom for another month or more.
My mini daffs are reaching their ephemeral peak. It won’t be long for them now. SIP has allowed me to enjoy them more, observing every stage of their short bloom.