outside looking in

Although it's been quite mild so far this year, once winter kicks in there won't be too much opportunity to get out into the garden, so the view of it from inside of the house is much more important. There are three main windows that look out into the back yard, and I thought it would be good to show you what I get to look at for the next few months. First though, the windows get cleaned.


My wife walked in as I was taking these photos and remarked on the beautiful, clean windows. When I told her I only cleaned them because I was composing a blog post, she asked if I would be doing any posts about the floor or bathroom anytime soon.

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So, the view from my windows. Let's start with our only south-facing window: the kitchen.


The view here is now quite lush and green, since it contains one of my larger bamboos:


As well as a great view of my neighbor's beautiful magnolia:




I think I have a better view of the tree than they do, and it always looks good.

Before I planted the bamboo here, all I had to look at were perennials and herbs:


(Which actually look more interesting in this photo than they really are because of the colorful reflections on the window.)


The next window that I spend a lot of time at is in the living room:


Bamboo has again made this view more special, especially in the winter, as they will stay green (unless we get some really cold weather, in which case the leaves may turn partially or entirely brown).

This is also the only window from which you can see the stream, and I like to keep it running as long as possible, so there's usually plenty of bird activity. (I'll have to shut the stream down once temperatures remain below freezing for a few days -- probably early January but who knows this winter.)


You can also see a bit of the driveway from here...


...but the better view of that is from the bedroom window:

(click for much larger image)
Thanks to the bamboo another window surrounded by green all winter long (hopefully), and this is the only view from the house of the pond. I keep the binoculars handy so I can watch the birds bathing and drinking. Squirrels too -- drinking, not bathing. (I've got a little more cleanup to do on the driveway, but it's almost free of potted plants now!)



Although I never planned any part of the garden around what it would look like from the house, I appreciate the views that I've inadvertently created -- they will make the winter much more tolerable.

What kind of views do you have from your windows?

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Gerhard Bock  – (December 19, 2011 at 9:40 AM)  

Hey, when you're done with your floor and bathrooms, you can clean our windows, especially the upstairs ones :-).

Your bamboos make the view extra special. No other plant group provides the same visual impact, in my opinion.

Gerhard
:: Bamboo and More ::

Alan @ It's not work, It's gardening!  – (December 19, 2011 at 11:56 AM)  

I somehow missed making the point that the magnolia seen through the kitchen window looks like this year-round, so when combined with the bamboo it makes a refreshingly green winter view. Or maybe everybody already knows that magnolias like this one are evergreen?

danger garden  – (December 19, 2011 at 12:32 PM)  

Our windows looking out into the back garden are in the very corner of our bedroom and tv room. You have to literally go stand in the corner to see out. It's horrible and almost kept us from buying our house....the front garden has lots of great views from the house, but then you also see some of the neighbors yards, which isn't so good! Lucky you that you've got a neighbors Magnolia to enjoy!

scottweberpdx  – (December 19, 2011 at 12:48 PM)  

Ah yes...how DO we gardeners make it though winters!?! I rely heavily on grasses during this time of year...even now, I can see the handsome stands of Calamagrostis outside my kitchen window, and the handsome clumps of Panicums, the billowy masses if Miscanthus seed heads. They don't QUITE make up for summer blooms...but they get me through :-)

anne  – (December 19, 2011 at 3:01 PM)  

I was wondering about the leaves on that magnolia - had me a little confused until I read your comment. I make sure every window in our house has a view of plants growing just outside in addition to the large scale views which luckily are really pretty.

Christine @ The Gardening Blog  – (December 19, 2011 at 5:08 PM)  

Hahaha, that was VERY funny! Okay, so now that I finished laughing about the bathroom and floor comments, I love the view from the kitchen and living rooms. Stunning. Unlike you, I actually did think mostly about the views from inside first, for some reason. The actual garden developed around that.

Lancashire rose  – (December 19, 2011 at 8:39 PM)  

I have to say we were lucky enough to design the house with that thought in mind. It is so important to marry the inside with the outside. For December you have some leafy green views from your squeeky clean windows.

Alan @ It's not work, It's gardening!  – (December 19, 2011 at 9:50 PM)  

Christine and Lancashire rose: you're both lucky in that you have walled gardens. It always seems easier to create a garden view when you have walls to work with. :-)

Barbie  – (December 20, 2011 at 2:35 AM)  

Pity you don't do floors! Haaha! But your window cleaning skills would be welcome in my home. I still have my grand daughter's 2 year old hand prints on my lounge windows - and she is 4 now! :-) love your bamboo - spectacular view!

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