Popularly called “Christmas Cactus” (technically termed Schlumbergera), because they usually bloom around Christmas time, we have several of these potted plants inside, flowering nicely just now. They are all in front of large (double-paned) windows along our cloister walk to church, enjoyable to see and adding a reminder of things to come, that is, warmer weather and more flowers on our property in the months ahead. Our many indoor plants are usually placed outside, from May to September.

We’re taking a guess that the coldest days of winter may already be passed, but fairly certain more snow will fall over the coming weeks and months. In any case, we are always grateful for precipitation in any form, to give the earth its much needed nourishment.

With our large greenhouse in Saint Fiacre Field now fully constructed, the raised-beds will be built soon and we look forward to growing produce and flowers there. Outdoor growing is an uphill climb, as competing with God’s creatures great and small is never easy in this part of the world. Even high fences the deer can easily leap over. Smaller species, such as rabbits, have no fear of entering our gardens either.

A blessed week ahead and with this comes assurance of our prayers. Please keep us in yours. Thank you.

Abbot Christian and the monks