Fresh Snow

I was so excited on my drive into work today because last night’s snow created the most beautiful winter landscape. There is nothing quite like a freshly fallen snow to make the world feel clean and new and safe. I read recently about the sound-absorbing quality of snow, which makes the world feel so much quieter. The softened world quiets my own busy thoughts and I feel a sense of awe with every new vista.

Giant Sequoia (Sequoiadendron giganteum)

I always feel a sense of awe when it comes to our oldest giant sequoia on the property, which lives near Ferry Road on the border of the Enclosed Garden. It is easy to drive past this impressive giant without ever looking up to enjoy its grandness. From the Enclosed Garden however it is impossible to ignore. The sequoia towers above its closest neighbors and has a gravitas not easily matched. 

Planted in 1911, this giant sequoia is the tallest on the east coast (estimated height is 95′). This tree has seen many comings and goings at Blithewold and has stood the test of time with grace. Here’s to many more beautiful years!

weeping pagoda tree (Styphnolobium japonica ‘Pendula’)

Right across the way from the giant sequoia is the weeping pagoda tree (Styphnolobium japonica ‘Pendula’). Its relatively small stature belies the fact that this is one of the oldest trees here at Blithewold. You may recall that there is another pagoda tree (or Japanese scholar tree) on the property that towers over the Rose Garden and covers our dry shade garden right outside the moongate. The weeping variety is much smaller and tops out at 25 feet in height. Even so, it looked especially elegant dressed in a light snow this morning.

The European beeches on the front lawn hold a special place in my heart, so I couldn’t wait to see them dressed in snow. The rosy morning light created the perfect backdrop for these beauties. Their foliage is lovely in the summer, but I adore the way the winter reveals their gorgeous branching structure.

The Japanese umbrella pine right in front of the main entry made a grand statement this morning with its highlights of snow on the tips of its whorled needles.

I hope this snow finds you safe and warm and enjoying the winter beauty in the landscape. A winter walk is good for the heart, mind, and soul.