February is camellia season (and oh how I love camellia season)


I've always wondered... why does February have to be all about a holiday that makes single people sad and men feel inadequate? In the midst of winter, February is a second chance to surround oneself with bright vibrant colors. The red of Christmas is replaced by the reds and pinks of hearts and flowers. Frilly fancy doilies take the place of paper snowflakes.


I used to mourn the passing of the Christmas and New Year season until I realized that as the Christmas tree was coming down (usually around the second week of January) the hearts and flowers of Valentine's Day could be going up. Such a revelation!

Hubby and I have just as much fun putting up the red and white Valentine decorations on our mantle as we do decorating the mantle for Christmas. We even have a special string of red glass heart lights that we put up so in the long winter evenings they glow with a brilliant red hue.


In our mild winter climate, February also brings the blooming of the camellia bushes. Growing on the sheltered north side of our house, the camellias have grown over the past 12 years with some having branches that touch the underside of the eaves. They set buds in November. Then we sit and wait with great anticipation until they begin blooming some time in late January or early February. February has become "camellia season" for me.


I sometimes like to bring two or three blooms inside and float them in low dishes filled with water. They look like Valentines from Nature herself.  The rest of the blooms I leave outside where we can see them through the windows on that side of the house. Even on a rainy day, they brighten and cheer the winter landscape. Cool and velvety-soft to the touch, the brilliant red and pink petals of the camellia blossoms stay on the bushes about as long as roses stay on the bush. Eventually the camellia petals fall to the ground carpeting the ground under the bushes as if a bride is expected to walk down the aisle there. It is dazzling.

I'm so happy camellia season is here once again.

 

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9 comments:

  1. Love, love, LOVE camellias!! For my climate, the late fall/winter blooming ones are the best. They are a perfect transition from rose season in fall to camellia season in winter. I have been adding two camellias to my garden each year. They are from a friend's garden ... one is a single white species, and the other one is deliciously fragrant ... I don't know the name of either of them. The spring-blooming ones are subject to late freezes, which spoil the flowers.

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    1. I had no idea there were camellia varieties that can live in a climate that gets snow! How neat! I hope you take pics of your blooms the next time they are blossoming. I'd love to see the varieties you described.

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  2. Honestly, Valentine's Day has never really held much significance for me. It's always felt like a contrived holiday, forced affection, and an opportunity for florists (no offence to anyone) to charge outrageous prices for flowers. I never required any of my boyfriends to participate. I'd rather they expressed their feelings for me, spontaneously, at some other time of the year.

    I do love your flowers though! When I look out our windows, I see white. Lots of white. I think I'll see it for a few months to come. It seems so strange to hear you speak of blossoming flowers already! Lucky you.

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    1. I don't care about all the commercial trappings of Valentine's Day either. But I LOVE to assign colors to the months of the year (as you know). And I always love me some pink and red!

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  3. Very, very pretty!! I love the vibrant reds in flowers, but cannot abide red in my clothing. Don't know why, but it was always my mom's favorite color.

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    1. I'm a redhead and used to avoid wearing red at all costs. Then I discovered that a shade of red with a blue undertone looks fine on me. But cherry red... Can't pull that shade off.

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  4. Oh how I love this post Cindy! I also think camellias are so pretty. I absolutely love the pink and red ones. And your photos are spectacular as usual.

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  5. Cindy, gorgeous shots, so cheerful and warming...

    What a treat to see Camellia's in your backyard....

    We certainly don't have them up here, it's too cold.

    Jen

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  6. Any rose lover such as myself, has to love camellias as well. If only I had a gentler climate. Beautiful photographs.

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