Posted by: christinelaennec | January 15, 2014

January in Glasgow’s Botanic Gardens

It has been dark, cold and rainy in Glasgow at the start of this new year, although we have seen the sun a few times.  When it does appear, I feel quite euphoric!  Recently, on a gloomy day, I had the good fortune to have a ramble through the lovely Botanics.  I set myself the challenge of finding “winter interest” in the garden to show you.  (Just to let you know, I didn’t go inside the glass houses.)

I love looking for buds, and the rhododendrons are full of them:

Buds on rhododendron.  Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.

Buds on rhododendrons (one evergreen and one deciduous). Glasgow Botanic Gardens, January 2014.

I can’t wait to see them when they’re in bloom!  Below, some stunning pink berries cut through the gloom as if they were lit from within:

Winter berries.  Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.

Winter berries. Glasgow Botanic Gardens, January 2014.  Possibly ‘pernettya’?

I liked how the silhouette of this evergreen mirrored the tall spire of the former church which is now Oran Mòr, a venue for concerts, plays, weddings and the like:

View of Oran Mor (steeple) from Glasgow Botanical Gardens.  January 2014.

View of Oran Mòr (steeple) from Glasgow Botanic Gardens. January 2014.

It’s true that there is beauty that can only be appreciated in the winter:

Intertwining branches.  Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.

Intertwining branches. Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.  (What might look like a basket hanging from the branch on the right is netting surrounding a very young tree behind.)

The white bark of this birch tree also seemed lit from within:

Birch tree, Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.

Birch tree, Glasgow Botanic Gardens, January 2014.

I was delighted to discover gorse in bloom in the Herb Gardens.  I was a little surprised to find it there, as I wouldn’t think of it as a “herb” but apparently it has medicinal properties and in former times was used for healing a variety of ailments.  Gorse always reminds me of being in Donegal at Eastertime.  Even on a winter’s day it had that lovely scent like coconut:

Gorse in bloom in the Herb Garden.  Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.

Gorse in bloom in the Herb Garden. Glasgow Botanic Gardens, January 2014.

And look, poppies are on their way again!  So exciting…

Poppy shoots, Glasgow Botanical Gardens.  January 2014.

Poppy shoots, Glasgow Botanical Gardens. January 2014.

I spent quite some time in the Rose Gardens admiring the beautiful rose hips and trying to take photos of the many small birds that were feasting on them.  I failed to get any good photos of the robins and blue tits for you, so you will just have to imagine them flitting about:

Rose hips on a bower.  Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.

Rose hips on a bower. Glasgow Botanical Gardens, January 2014.

It was great to be out in a garden, and reassuring to see that there is always beauty, if you take the trouble to look for it.

I hope the start of 2014 is going well for all of you!

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Responses

  1. Nice to see those signs of spring.. I have a lilac that has some buds, but I keep telling it not to go so fast! I do love the rhododendrons. Don’t see those much here in the mid-west.

  2. It’s beautiful to see the gorse flowers and those pink berries are quite amazing. I do love a winter garden – so peaceful and serene. The view of the church spire is lovely. Glad you were able to get out and enjoy some beauty on a winter day, Christine. Hugs xo Karen

  3. It’s amazing how a garden can lift the spirits, even at this time of year with so little out. The gorse flowers are beautiful, and I like the signs of hope that are starting to peep up out of the soil.

  4. I think you have much more in bloom than we do! I love those berries! And the gorse in bloom — wow! More snow for us today — only an inch or two. At least it is pretty!!!

  5. So encouraging to see flashes of colour and evidence of growth, in these gloomy times. Roll on Spring, Christine!

  6. I think the shrub with the bright-coloured berries may be a callicarpa. Some years ago I bought one, attracted by the picture on the label of the berries. And waited, and waited a bit more. No berries ever appeared, and eventually the thing died. Then recently we found one in a garden centre that actually has berries, and they are still there, looking bright and shiny and almost as if they’re made of plastic. Obviously the birds don’t fancy them. And they do add a bit of colour to the garden.

  7. Thanks everyone, for joining me on my winter garden walk. It’s lovely to have company, as it were. When I’m out and about I so often think that people might enjoy seeing what I’m looking at, and it’s so nice to discover that some people do!


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