As the winter draws even closer, a lot of us worry about whether our plants will last – especially if conditions become severe or the temperature drops significantly.
What people don’t realise is, even though the seasons can kill off various plants and foliage, nature is perennial.
So, wrap up warm and head down to your local garden centre, because there are some plants which WILL grow throughout winter!
That’s right, even if it’s snowing, there are plants which will bloom and thrive in the ice cold. You could even keep them in a greenhouse if you didn’t want to completely re-jig your garden.
How nice would it be to have a beautifully coloured winter garden for the family to admire on Christmas day!? Sounds great doesn’t it.
Here’s some options you could consider;
One of the most popular of winter plants is the Camellia. This evergreen blooms from fall to early spring and its brightly coloured rose like flowers offer a striking contrast to a dull winter landscape.
The best place to plant them is in a place which gets a little sun, but not a lot. Try to protect it from strong winds too. (i.e. within an area of your garden which isn’t subject to as much wind)
- Red Twig Dogwood
Red Twig Dogwood is another big favourite. The plant’s striking red stems are only attractive on their own, they pair up great with evergreens.
The colours remain all year, but in spring and summer the new leaves will need to be regularly removed to reveal the stems. The brightness of the plants colour depends on the amount of sun it receives, so make sure it’s in the best place possible.
Firethorn is a hardy perennial which is attractive all year around. It has small clusters of beautiful white flowers in spring and bright glossy green leaves in the rest of the year.
The small pea like berries, which can be either orange or yellow, will remain long after winter is over. Seeds should be planted in the fall (in a cold frame) and transplanted to well drained rich earth in the spring.
Winterberry, known as the cousin of holly, loses its leaves in the fall so that the bright red berries come into their own. This plant is a staple of winter landscaping and once you see the berries, you will know why.
If you’re a fan of birds, these plants will attract them instantly, so you’ll be able to get some amazing photos.
The seeds must be sown in the fall in a cold frame and should be transplanted to rich moist soil in the spring. This is a slow growing plant and germination can take 2 to 3 years
- Paper Birch Tree
Why not plant a tree!? In Autumn, the Paper Birch tree shows off its beautiful yellow leaves and when the weather turns cold, its white bark offers a striking contrast to a backdrop of evergreens.
It is often used as the focal point of Christmas displays. Trees should be planted in shallow holes with mulch to retain moisture. They grow best in partial sunlight.
Heather has always been a very popular plant in Europe but has been largely overlooked in this country until recently when its appeal as a winter plant was recognized.
This plant blooms all year and offers beautiful flowers in summer and fall. In winter the thick foliage makes an appealing contrast to the more delicate blooms of other winter plants.
Planting should be done in winter with mulch in a place that attains the maximum sunlight.
Holly has always been associated with winter. With 400 varieties to choose from that range from small bushes to huge trees of up to 80 feet, there is a type of holly for every garden and winter landscape.
Its bright berries and thick foliage ensure that this is one plant that always catches the eye.
Another winter plant that is available in a wide range of varieties is Hellebore. The bloom are an unmistakable cup shape and the wide range of colours mean that you will be able to find one that compliments the rest of your winter garden.
All it takes to create a beautiful winter garden is a little imagination and a trip to a garden supply store to buy the seeds you need. It will also give pleasure not just in winter, but all year round.