Mother Nature’s Gentle Reminder

I had some presentations yesterday and travel conditions fluctuated between ok and bad.  I was watching the temperature alternate between 30 and 34 degrees F and noted quite a few cars off the road later in the afternoon.  With heavier snows further north, we were spared the worst of it but still had some white stuff come down.  All the photos here are from Olbrich Botanical Gardens (Madison, WI) last evening when I arrived for my presentation (The Sensory Garden).  I couldn’t resist a brisk (literally and figuratively) walk and had the gardens to myself.  Above are some colorful dogwoods (Cornus sp.) featuring excellent winter interest with bright stems.  The other photos below have captions.  
We had a great crew yesterday although everyone was inside as the pounding rain turned to slush and ultimately light snow later in the day.  Gary, Alan and Dr. Gredler were painting chairs and other structures inside while Ron Y. put primer on some new Adirondack chairs that will be for sale in our Cottage Garden Gallery soon.  Vern, Dave and Marv B. worked on assembling more chairs and Dick H. had some projects.  Jenny E. continued to work on processing labels and Gene continued sanding and staining benches.  Larry H., Big John and Janice all had indoor projects and Maury F. ran some errands for us.  I’m sure there were more folks in that I just didn’t see.
Today we had help from Jim and four RECAPPERS who did some major digging out in the gardens.  Bill O. and Maury F. and some projects as well.   We also saw Patrea, Urban, Hannah and many others.  Big John, Janice and I worked on a wide range of projects and the snow is now melting quickly.  We’re heading in to “full speed ahead” mode out in the gardens and we had Paulson-Kimball Construction come today to help load up our “Santa’s Village” houses on to a trailer for storage (until November).  
 cool willow (Salix) and dogwood (Cornus) tower
 snowdrops (Galanthus sp.) with snow
 crocus (Crocus sp.)
 bridge between the woodland garden and rock garden
 the herb garden (above and below) accented with snow

 vernal witchhazel (Hamamelis vernalis) – unknown variety
 cool brick pattern with snow
 vernal witchhazel (Hamamelis vernalis)
 ‘Arnold Promise’ witchhazel (Hamamelis x intermedia) – above and below
 hellebore (Helleborus) shrugging off the snow
 China Snow Peking lilac (Syringa pekinensis ‘Morton’)
 ‘Bergeson Compact’ redosier dogwood (Cornus sericea)
 ‘Dripping Cherries’ Corneliancherry dogwood (Cornus mas)
 ‘Bud’s Yellow’ yellowstem dogwood (Cornus sericea)
nicely trimmed boxwoods (Buxus) showing strong form
 ice formation of climbing hydragea (Hydrangea anomala subsp. petiolaris)
 nice ice formations on crabapples (Malus sp.)