Well, January is almost over and as the first month of the year goes, this one seems to have been particularly grey and wet. With a lack of brilliance outside it's always welcoming to bring some colour indoors to brighten a dull day.As soon as I see tulips in the shops I can't resist bringing a bunch home.
And for a bit more longevity I also pick up some pots of early flowering narcissi which I put in a favourite vintage box. Flowers and plants can look good in the quirkiest of containers - old treacle tins, tea cups, rustic enamel - anything goes.
Some flower heads still look lovely even after they have died. I was given a bucketful of dried hydrangea heads a few months ago so I put a stem in an old bottle that I dug up while gardening when we first moved here. I have never managed to properly clean this bottle but that's part of its charm.
The name printed on it is 'Chas Rose & Co, Malton'. I researched the name and Chas Rose & Co was a Malton brewery dating back to 1767. Malton, our nearest town, as its name (malt) suggests, had several brewing industries with as many as nine in the town at one time. There is now a resurgent brewing industry in the town with several craft beer companies that have set up in and around Malton. The Beertown beer festival is running on April 21st-23rd 2016.
Back in Autumn, I planted some bulbs in pots outside, not expecting to see much sign of life until at least February, but as I am typing I have just noticed a little purple flower that has already opened. And out on a walk yesterday there were drifts of snowdrops in the hedgerows and little yellow aconites are injecting some much-needed colour into parts of our garden.
So, for some of us it looks like Spring is just around the corner....