Winter Solstice in San Jose

Sunday we honored the shortest day of our year. It’s winter solstice in San Jose.

Do you know what that means?

It means that spring is only three months away!

Seriously though, you have to look a bit harder for signs of winter in California. We’ve had a few weeks of back to back rain storms, a welcome break from the drought but temperatures remain mild. Most of the deciduous trees are bare of their leaves but others remain evergreen.

Here’s a peek into the winter garden. It asks for little and gives a lot. Nature is like that.

orange cosmos buds

Cosmo buds, no sign of slowing down

orange cosmos

Cosmo in bloom

hummingbird in chinese pistache

Hummingbird in the Chinese Pistache tree

chinese pistache winter

Stripped bare of its leaves, but covered in buds waiting for spring

California poppy

I’m on the ‘every other season’ plan. All the seeds that forgot to come up last year are sending out little beacons of green delight. That’s a California Poppy on the right and to be determined seedlings on the left.


Statice in bloom

pink zinnia

Zinnia. The plant looks shabby, but the flowers continue to bloom

unidentified planted objects

Unidentified planted objects

mexican sage

The Mexican Sage reminds me of a purple caterpillar


Lemon scented holidays

Here is a shot of the little tomato that could, a self-sown seedling growing from a crack in the steps. Yep…tomato plants in December.

tomato volunteer

Self-sown tomato making a go of it out of the side of the concrete steps

During this hectic time of year, I hope you can find a few moments to enjoy what nature has to offer.

14 thoughts on “Winter Solstice in San Jose

  1. Your lemons look so healthy! My friend who came to stay a couple or so weeks back bought lemons from her tree and they are so juicy. My poor tiny, dryish store bought items were a very poor comparison! Yay for the tomato who can! I hope it does 🙂

    Your last post about dressing up your selfie inspired me so much I dressed up my little wooden mannikin that sits on a shelf in the art room and who has mostly always been left woodenly naked no matter the season………. I must write a wee post and show you.

    Today I am still reeling [happily] from your email – Words cannot express the enormous, overwhelming gratitude, happiness, excitement, enrichment of life that sweeps through me. I am blessed! by a trio of very special women xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Pauline. Those lemons have been a long time coming, so it’s quite exciting to see them finally here. The tree really needed more growing time to get here, but now it seems happy and is rewarding us with fruit. Lemons are such a practical fruit as well: you can garnish with them, make them into lemonade or you can deodorize your sink, clean your copper teapot or set them in a bowl for a beautiful, fragrant display.

      I’m glad to hear your friend could share some of her own fresh lemons. I hope, too that you had a fabulous visit.

      I’ve just been to your delicious blue room post and had fun enlarging all the photos so I could soak in every detail.

      Ironically I’ve just come from a potential clients home with a vast collection of dolls. She has over 1,000 of them collected for the past 40 years (she’s 91). I’ve been asked to bid on the packing of the entire collection for a move out of state.

      We are blessed by you, Pauline. I’ve been on a cloud for the past ten days. xoxox

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I thought I knew California before. Fair days year round, green trees in every season and nothing in the closet but flip-flops. Northerners are kind of silly as well as envious. Then I met you hon. Now I’m seeing, while subtle, there are actual seasons to look forward to. I’ve learn that the leaves *do* fall, no gardener worth her weight in compost can do any serious gardening in flip-flops and you have to rake leaves too. Spring is a lonnnnng way off for us but by April, with any luck, we’ll be ankle deep in pink cherry blossoms. OMgosh, won’t it be beautiful? I’m so happy I’ll see them with you! xoxoxo


    • Ankle deep in cherry blossoms is an image to hold on to. I love that. And that planned trip keeps getting better and better and better.

      “worth her weight in compost…” you are so good with a turn of a phrase. You really should start a blog.

      ….oh wait!!!! You already did. I’m the luckiest woman in the world.


  3. Hey Alys, how different winter looks in California! Love your garden and photos..hope your winter solstice was good one: this year it was extra special with the new moon at the same time…must be very good year coming up with all these rising energies! xoxo Johanna


    • Thank you, Johanna. I’m sure Ohio is looking quite a bit different this time of year.

      It was nice having a new moon on the solstice. I hope it does portend good things for the coming year. I’m ready for world peace, or at least a few steps toward that end. xoxo


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