January– Is the season to pick olives for oil and to marinate others with aromatic herbs that grow abundantly in the area. It’s also the best time for pruning and transplanting. Nights are cold and days are sunny, some of them accompanied by snow.
February– Almond trees begin to blossom and certain bulbs to sprout. It’s time to carefully select, collect and dry tomato, pepper and other seeds, before laying them snuggly in seedbeds. Winter slowly recedes, but not before giving us the gift of snow, rain and wind. And constant sun, of course.
March– Oh spring, with your almond and mimosa blossoms, your daffodils, your lilies, and your long trail of bulbs bursting throughout La Viñuela! Accompanied by the sound of endless birdsong, fruits begin to show and the first vegetable seeds are planted in the garden.
April– The smell of jasmine and orange blossom is intoxicating. Along with lilies flower daisies, tulips, and wisteria, cherries, pears and quince. Spring rains entice the grass to burst with green, and vegetation abounds. The garden is alive. Baby vines begin their climb to create summer shade for the porches, and white poplars shed their cotton-like tufts, covering La Viñuela for a few days in a white robe like snow.
May– Roses bloom, so scented! Early vegetables grow in the garden and temperatures continue to rise. It’s time for the brave to enjoy that first jump in the pool.
June– The warmth brings us wild cherries, persimmons, apricots, daisies, and acanthus blossoms, while the garden produces lettuce, peppers, strawberries and raspberries… Those jams never tasted so good!
July– Oleanders bloom and trees are heavy with cherries and loquats. The garden is generous with tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, strawberries, and raspberries, available to guests in “La Vinuela Shop”. We savour our time making jams and preserves, and soak in the swimming pool for hours. Summer brings with it delightful barbecue evenings and endless social gatherings.
August– Peaches, apples, watermelons, melons, honey from the local beekeepers… What a harvest! The hibiscus bushes share their beautiful flowers, and gazpacho and salads become part of the daily menu. Surrounding villages come even more alive with their fiestas and festivities – you don’t want to miss a concert! Summer nights drag on, though you still need to cover up to sleep in the Sierra…
September– The days are getting shorter but the sun shines on, warming grapes, figs and blackberries ready to pluck from the tree and be eaten, decorate desserts, or produce seasonal jams.
October– Those delicious almonds: raw, fried, roasted, sugared… Pick your own and taste the difference! Autumn arrives with sunny days and a little rain, the trees change colour and sunsets give us the most dramatic hues of the year.
November– Quince, chrysanthemum, persimmon, strawberry, pineapple, chestnuts… We continue harvesting tomatoes, zucchini, leeks, raspberries and peppers for roasting. Sunny days alternate with rain, and many species of mushrooms grow along the forest paths and terraces.
December-There are still more mushrooms, persimmons and almonds, while olive trees begin to bear fruit. Christmas comes and temperatures drop, yet the sun is a constant companion. It’s a pleasure to be out in the fields, or out on a long winter walk…