Is it really December? Six on Saturday 1 December 2018

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It’s the first day of Winter today according to the meteorological calendar. The older I get the quicker the time flies by and the more rubbish my memory becomes; this is one of the reasons I started a blog – to record what was happening around us, in the garden, days out and what adventures we got up to.  It’s certainly done that, I’ve rediscovered my love of photography.  It also gives me a chance to see how the garden changes from day to day and year to year.  But, I really do sound like a broken record mentioning often what odd weather we’ve had this year – it’s been very, very mild, temperatures often 10-15 degrees – and not getting anywhere freezing overnight.  Here beside the Bridgewater Canal, in Monton, in Salford, quite a few of my plants still haven’t realised it’s December. Usually, the garden in December would be looking rather leafless, bare sticks and trees, the odd evergreen plant and a basket or two of winter violas and pansies – with frost and cold, wet soil.  Instead, there a couple of plants flowering that really shouldn’t be…

1.Margarite – Argyranthemum Frutescens

five small yellow daisy like flowers - margarites

yellow margarite

I have three of these plants in pots, in the front garden, and they are still flowering – they’re proper sun lovers.  I love daisy style flowers, so I have many different plants – dahlias (Bishop styles), Leucanthemum, these and cute alpines.

2. Rose Campion (Lychnis Coronaria)

campion shocking pink flower and grey foliage

campion shocking pink

This campion arrived in a pot from my mum about five years ago – it’s been split a few times but was happily flowering for most of the summer, then it had a rest for October and most of November.  Then it started flowering again last week – campion flowers have been on the blog before:

3. Petunia Surfinia Purple Vein

petunia surfinia – purple vein

This is one of my favourite petunias; we have it in pots and baskets every summer – it flowered profusely all this Summer especially as it was so hot.  It should be well over by now but a couple of plants are still flowering, as their right by the brick wall.

4. Salvia ‘Amistad’

Salvia Amistad by the arbour

Salvia Amistad by the arbour

There are still flowers on this salvia but it’s definitely slowing down – it appeared in ‘A six on Saturday’ in late September 2018. I’m hoping I can overwinter it OK.

5. Fuchsia ‘Pink Spangles’

dark pink and pale pink fuchsia

Fuchsia ‘Pink Spangles’ – half hardy

This is one of my half hardy fuchsias – it’s still flowering well it’s in a pot near the wall so that I think helps the plant. I think it’s ‘Pink Spangles’ as, unfortunately, the label is lost. It was a gift from a friend a couple of years ago.  It will be going to live in the porch, for the rest of the Winter.

6. Viburnum

vibernum winter flowering

Viburnum winter flowering

This is one of two standard viburnum trees that came as a wedding gift to us last year;  they were in full bloom for our wedding in September 2017. Since then – they’ve flowered at very random times – I think the very cold weather in March and boiling heat in June/July has confused the plants. They’ve been re-potted so I hope they survive the winter OK.
I don’t know the variety, as M and S didn’t admit it.  I’ll take some bud photos next time it’s sunny to help me identify it – it has a beautiful scent.  I think it’s definitely a winter flowering viburnum – I’m going to keep an eye on how long they flower for this Winter.


As usual, I am joining the Propagator who takes six photos around his garden or the locality and writes about them.  This week (1 December 2018) he has raspberry canes (I love raspberries too), bay trees (ours need pruning), lots of new plants and some pretty cyclamen.  His photos reminded me that we ‘need’ to order some plants for next year.

Gardening bloggers from around the world join in too. Reading these posts gives me ideas about what I can grow in our garden.

you can follow my #SixonSaturday posts or click on the menu.

Winter plans – is it really December?

Part of gardening is about thinking of the future – so I’m planting bulbs, including tulips, usually the ground is rock hard and cold, instead, it’s damp and soggy.  I’ve put the dahlias in the garage for the Winter, it’s too wet for them. And we’re looking at the David Austin rose website… this could get expensive 😉

Winter is definitely not my favourite time of year (Spring is the season for me) but there are many good things about this time of year.  I am a big believer in the values of Hygge; the state of mind, being in the moment and being cosy.  I struggle in Winter because my osteoarthritis aches more than the summer, so the pain makes me more tired than usual.   I wrote about Hygge earlier in November, with some very ‘summery’ flowers in a Vase too.

I’ve got the blankets out, found the Winter candles, the outdoor lights are up and hung our Advent calendar, which is rather unusual and doesn’t contain chocolate ;-).  Meanwhile, I’ll leave you with this quote which sums what I think about Winter.

“Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for a home.” — Edith Sitwell, English Poet (1887-1968).

It is really December?  Christmas is coming

I guess I’d better get on with planning for Christmas… all around me the ‘villages’ of Salford have been turning on their Christmas lights, on Saturday, Father Christmas travelled along the Bridgewater Canal to Worsley Green.  Here in Monton, there was a fair by the canal and Father Christmas visited too.


On Thursday, I was at ‘Christmas at Dunham Massey’, an incredible light and music show in the woods and around the garden.  Here’s a sneak peek – it was amazing.

If you’re local do go along – you can book online here

Dunham Massey, near Altrincham, is owned by the National Trust.   Note: I was invited to attend the preview with National Trust staff free of charge in return for social media and blog coverage. I’ll be writing a more detailed post this week.  

Christmas Dunham Massey silver birchs disco lights and a fluorescent

Christmas at Dunham Massey – silver birch disco lights

There were plenty of reindeer in the woods;

Visiting Dunham Massey, definitely got me in the mood for Christmas.  I think need I get on with our arrangements and plans 🙂


Have you been gardening this weekend? Any plants flowering when they shouldn’t? 

Is it full on Christmas arrangements for you? 

Have you been to a Christmas light show like at Dunham Massey? 

Do you enjoy Winter?  What have you been doing to prepare for Winter?  

Carpe Diem,

love Bec xx xx xx



17 thoughts on “Is it really December? Six on Saturday 1 December 2018

  1. Cliona Kelliher

    I really love your pictures, so gorgeous! My garden has been pretty weird too, lots of things still flowering really late. I’ve been trying to do a tidy up and some pruning and I planted more tulips because they are such a blaze of colour in the spring.

  2. Lora Hughes

    It’s amazing how much bloom you still have. The salvia? I thought they retreated at any indication of a turn in the weather. The pansy is gorgeous, as is the viburnum.

  3. lukeosaurusandme

    Aw I love the the flowers are still in bloom, although it doesn’t bode well for climate change! The bright colours are nice and eye catching on the grey, rainy mornings though.

  4. Amy - All about a Mummy

    I know! How is it December already! We have an apple tree in our new garden so I’ve been researching what I need to do over the winter to get it ready for next season’s fruit.

    1. Bec - views from my garden bench Post author

      yep – mature apple trees are fairly sturdy – mostly about pruning damaged branches. there will be info on Royal Horticultural Society website or on the specialist fruit growing nursaries. Hope you get some good apples from it next year 🙂

  5. Steph

    Oh there are some lovely flowers still flowering. My garden very much slowing down now, maybe I need to find some more winter flowering flowers for next year

    1. Bec - views from my garden bench Post author

      thanks Steph – it’s definitely slowing down here – there’s quite a few plants that flower in winter, some yasmines as well as viburnum. winter pansies too… it won’t be long before the snow drops are flowering though.

  6. saff

    I actually use to really love growing Purple Vein in my garden! It’s the only thing I could grow that wouldn’t die ahahah

  7. MissPond

    I’ve not got many flowers left, some of my Ox Eye Daisies did still have flowers on until a frost 2 weeks ago. Scary thing is though, some of my bulbs are making an appearance…


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