Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Blog Anniversary

January, the 1st of 2012 was not only the first day of a brand new year, but also the first anniversary of my blog. That day we had again wonderful California winter weather with temperatures in the upper 70s, clear blue skies, and just a very light breeze. I used the day to garden as much as I could since it was the last day of the holidays and on the 2nd I went back to work. For me there is no better way to start a New Year than this! Still I took the time to reflect a little bit about my blogging experience of the very first year and would like to share my thoughts with you.

 Bee visiting an anemone (photo by my husband).  


First of all I am surprised that I am still blogging about my garden. I am even more surprised how much I enjoy writing about and photographing it. When I started my blog I was not sure if I would be able to post on a regular basis and keep the blogging up. My husband was almost certain that I would not do it, but how wrong we both were.

This 'Iceberg' rose living in a container is still going strong.


I never would have anticiapted that sharing my garden (and sometimes other people's or public gardens) with you, my dear readers, would be so much fun for me. A heartfelt thanks to you, who are "out there" reading my blog. Also special thanks to the ones of you, who took the time to leave kind, encouraging, and helpful comments. It means a lot to me!


'Madame Caroline Testout'. I really like her informal flower shape.  


At the end of 2011 I had a look at my blog statistics and realized that I finished the year with 18.962 pageviews and that 54 people have enrolled to follow my blog. When I begun to write my little blog one year ago I would have never thought that I will have so many readers, as a matter of fact I was not sure if anyone is interested in anything that I have to write or show. Your resonance to my blog has been very motivating and rewarding for me and I am looking forward to continue to blog in 2012. Hopefully I will be able to improve my blog content and become a better writer and photographer. Be assured at least I am trying to! I would be delighted if you would continue to visit me here in 2012, too!

Agapanthus 'Storm Could' emerging back from the ground. To me this just looks so spring-ish already.


One thing that I also didn't get in the beginning of blogging is, that it is as much fun to read other people's gardening blogs and "see their gardens" as to write about my own yard. So I also would like to thank those of you who are writing gardening blogs for letting me participate in your gardening adventures, visiting your gardens, and learning from you.


My gardenia 'Veittchii' is blooming a little. The flowers have a porcelain like quality and the fragrance is just wonderful. 


Last but not least I was asking myself: Has blogging made me a better gardener? The answer is a clear yes. I think what helped me the most is taking so many photos of my garden. Somehow I see my garden through the lens of the camera more objectively. It seems to give me more distance to look at my garden almost like a stranger. The flaws stand out more, but also when something worked I can see it more clearly. Somehow photographing the garden trains the eye. Also reading other blogs written by real hands-on gardeners has taught me so much. Taking in their garden designs, reading about their experiences (triumphs and failures), getting to know new plants, seeing things through someone else's eye (or more accurately camera lens) is an invaluable source of learning. Besides this I simply enjoy looking at other gardens.


 The bird feeder is highly frequented at this time of the year (photo by my husband).


I am not a big fan of New Year's resolutions, but gardening and blogging about it has given me so much joy last year that I feel highly motivated to try to make my garden 2012 the most beautiful garden that I have ever had. Of course, that will be in the limitations of time and other resources that I have at my hand, but I would really like to test my limits this year. I cheated a little bit and started already in the last week of the old year, which my husband and I had taken off from work. Right now I will only say that much: I am working on a re-do of the "White Bed". Please stay tuned, more about it soon...

See you in the garden!

Christina



29 comments:

  1. Hello Christina,
    Congratiulations with a year blogging. And wow what a gorgeous blog you have! And I feel the same about the experience trough a lens of a camera. Never knew that there was so much to see. Not only flowers but also beautiful butterfly's, insect's, birds. I like your writing. Go on with it.
    Have great day
    Marijke

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  2. I am happy to read your blog, Christina. It's so beautiful !!!
    I am waiting to see the white bed in the spring and all the other wonderful corners of your lovely garden.
    Hugs !!!

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  3. Congratulations dear Christina on your blogs' first year anniversary. I love visiting your blog, seeing the beautiful photos, reading about your blooms and gardens you visit. I want to thank you for visiting my humble gardens via my blog and the kind comments you post.

    Blogging has opened a whole new world for me. It's a learning, sharing and wonderful experience.

    I look forward to visiting you this year, to be inspired by your lovely gardens, which in turn makes me want to make mine better. Thank you.

    FlowerLady

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  4. You expressed so many of my own thoughts here. I do love coming to see what you have going in your garden. Thank you for being here and sharing with us and congratulations on your 1 year anniversary.

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  5. Hi Marijke, thank you very much for your comment and the compliments regarding my blog. It is interesting to me that we share the same camera experience! Have a nice day, too!

    Dani, thanks so much for your warm comment! I can't wait myself to see the "White Bed" in spring. Hope I can pull it up, though...

    FlowerLady, thanks for your kind comment! "Blogging has opened a whole new world for me. It's a learning, sharing and wonderful experience." I couldn't have said this better. I am really happy that I took the leap and dived into the biosphere. Your blog is definitively one of the gems that I found there :-)!

    Backwoods Cottage Pam, welcome to my blog and many thanks for your nice comment. I am looking forward to your visits in the future!

    Christina

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  6. Happy Blogaversary! I always look forward to seeing what's going on in your beautiful garden. I'm fairly new to blogging also. I have learned so much and "met" such helpful and kind gardeners. Keep on blogging!

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  7. I feel exactly the way you do. Almost every word you wrote I could have written myself. Happy Blogaversary! It's because of you and Sherry and Masha that I started my own blog. I look forward to reading about your white bed!

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  8. What a beautiful post, that I can really relate to. I also started blogging just to record my gardening experiences, but I've now discovered a whole garden blogging community out there. I too get so much pleasure from reading other people's blogs, but the icing on the cake is the comments they leave. Looking forward to reading your posts in the coming seasons.

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  9. Dorothy, thanks for your kind comment! I agree with you, I have learned so much from blogging gardeners, who never failed to answer my questions. They are just a nice crowd.

    Holley, thanks! Oh, I didn't know that besides Sherry and Masha I was also a person who inspired you to start your blog. Now you are my inspiration, because you are writing a particular lovely one :-).

    Crystal, thank you so much! I am still discovering the huge garden blogging community. Wish I had more time to spend reading other people's blogs. Also, I still get a kick out of every comment someone leaves on my blog. I don't think that will ever stop.

    Christina

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  10. Such lovely pictures. We must get together soon. It has been to long..

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  11. Hi Stephanie, nice to see you commenting on my blog again :-)! I would love to get together with you soon, preferably in your or my garden :-), just give me a call and we can set something up!

    Christina

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  12. Hello Christina,
    The plant is the Yucca. She stays grean during the winter with a lovely grey-green foliage. You have to give here space. I like this plant very much.
    have a lovely weekend,
    gr. Marijke

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  13. Thanks for the insight into your garden - I too learn from all my blogger friends.

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  14. Hi Christina, it's my first anniversary too, and I echo all the sentiments of your post here but can't express them as eloquently as you! Thanks for all your lovely posts and also for stopping by at ernie and i to leave comments too!

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  15. Hi Marijke, thank you so much for letting me know about the plant. I didn't expect a Yucca outside in your garden, thought your climate would be too cold to get it through the winter, so I just didn't recognize it even though this plant is grown here in Southern California quite often. This seems to be a typical example of: you see what you expect or in case of your plant I didn't see what I didn't expect :-)! Anyway your Yucca is very lovely!
    Have a nice weekend, too!

    Claudia, welcome to my blog and thanks for leaving a comment! I feel learning from other bloggers has been such a gift!

    Martin, thank you very much for your nice comment! Happy Blogaversary to you, too! The first year of blogging went by pretty quick, don't you think? I am looking forward to the next posts of you!

    Christina

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  16. Hello Christina,

    My compliments to your husband on his photograph of 'Bee visiting an anemone' - I have never seen one more captivating.

    Congratulations on your first blogging anniversary!

    ~Debra

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  18. Christina, congratulations on your blogging anniversary! I enjoy your blog very much, I am glad to get a glimpse of your garden which I can visit at least virtually, if not physically... I like reading about your roses, and am looking forward to seeing more of your and your husband's pictures. Good luck in the new year!

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  20. Happy Blogiversary! It's a great feeling to get so much back from sharing a part of your life. Mine started out as an art/craft blog but has morphed into more about my garden, at least during the growing season.

    I've been enjoying looking at your blog because of the SOCAL light. I used to live in LA as a kid (Venice) and seeing that light just makes me feel relaxed and happy. Quite a contrast to the wintery Scottish skies I am looking at now - though they have their own beauty, especially in Summer when it barely gets dark at night.

    I was wondering if you might add your garden to Folia the online gardening website (it's free). I especially like to encourage Organic Gardeners to join.

    It's a great resource for gardeners and has helped me keep on top of my 800+ plantings with photo's, notes, journals, milestones etc. They have an extensive plant wiki and a seed stash section where people can also list seeds for swapping. Here's the link to my Folia page so you can see how it works: www.myfolia.com/gardener/CDfolia/invite.

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  21. Jeg kom tilfældig forbi din fine blog.
    Smukke billeder.
    Jeg holder især af dit fuglebillede.
    Tak for kigget.

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  22. Happy Blogaversary! So glad you decided to blog your gardening adventures. I have learned so much from your posts.

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  23. Cally, welcome to my blog and thanks for your nice comment! The Southern California light is indeed very cheerful to the soul! I would love to be able to see the Scottish sky with my own eyes, too. Maybe one day... Folia, the online gardening website that you are mentioning sounds interesting. I will check it out when I have a little bit of time.

    Landbohaven, thanks for your kind comment. I am happy that you like the photos, the bird shot is one of my favorites, too. I just love having birds in the garden!

    redneckrosarian, thank you so much for your nice comment. I am glad that you feel you got something out of my posts :-)! I enjoy reading your blog, too!

    Christina

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  24. The rose that you are growing in a pot, how big those pots have to be? Thanks.

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  25. KL, here in Southern California almost all roses grow very tall, being planted in the ground or in a pot. So I use containers as big as my husband and I can lift ;-)! The one shown on the photo of this post has a diameter of 24" and a hight of 22" and is the biggest pot that I own. My "usual container size" for roses is 20" in diameter and a height of 19". When you are gardening in a cooler climate you can most likely get away with smaller pots, but it will also still depend on the mature size of the rose. I would definitively recommend to research its final size beforehand to make a decision about the size of the pot you want to plant it in. The HMF website is a good way to look up the size of a rose and a wonderful resource for other rose related information, too: http://www.helpmefind.com/
    Hope this helps!

    Christina

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  26. congratulations on your blog anniversary ...
    I see you a rose lover, like me ..
    Your Lady of Guadalupe ... I just love it
    My writing english is not so perfect, I hope you do'nt mind, becouse i'm Dutch.
    Have a nice weekend..

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  27. Hi Marian, a warm welcome to my blog and thanks for leaving a comment and becoming a follower! I am glad to meet another rose fan. Don't worry about your English at all. I am born in Germany and moved to the US 8 years ago and I still make plenty of mistakes, just can't help it. So I of all people completely understand when ones English isn't perfect and guess what it doesn't matter to me :-)! Wishing you a nice weekend as well!

    Christina

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