Consider home garden designs to include interesting and colorful trees, shrubs and even vegetable plants that need little winter care and bring ife to the cold months.
While many North American gardens fall into a deep sleep over the colder winter months, the color and interest of winter gardens complete with winter flowers should not be forgotten.
Walks in the snow are simply made more enjoyable when you see stands of birch trees and groupings of red twig dogwoods or winterberries. Or, you can take comfort form the snow covering even leftover fall gardens, with perennials still peeking out such black-eyes Susans or ornamental grasses.
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Winter Flowers, Vegetables Possible; Garden Zones Key
As with all gardening tips, your location makes a huge difference in the types of winter gardens that will not only survive but thrive to take on a frosty beauty in the winter months. Check out the Old Farmer’s Almanac to find out what zone you live in and what types of winter plants will thrive and survive in your garden.
Experts at WinterGardeningTips.com believe that winter is one of the best times to grow vegetables. Depending on where you live, these vegetables can be grown in your garden throughout the winter months:
- Winter squash such as pumpkin, butternut, accord and spaghetti
- Hot chile peppers
- Brussel sprouts
Not only can winter gardens yield some tasty, nutritious vegetables but winter plants can provide some stunning ornamental qualities during the long cold days of the season.
Landscape and Design Winter Gardens With Color
Mary Welch-Keesey, a horticulturalist with Purdue University, notes that the bright colors of spring, summer and fall will be replaced with winter gardens designed with winter flowers and “with shape and texture, striking architecture and subtle contrast.”
She recommends that you choose plants that stay green for most of the winter season, including trees, shrubs and groundcovers and perennials. Some of the most interesting winter plans include the following:
#1. Evergreen conifers
Spruce, pines, junipers and yews are the most common but try unusual conifers as well such as Sawara False Cypress, Alaska False Cypress and Hemlock
#2. Broad-leaved evergreens
Glossy abelia, Boxwood, Shrub Euonymus and Aaronsbeard St. Johnswort
#3. Plants with interesting form or branching
Redwood, dogwood, Weeping crabapple or cherry, sumac, ornamental grasses and weeping willows
#4. Plants with interesting or colorful bark
, shrub dogwoods, burning bush, bamboo and sycamore
#5. Woody plants with interesting fruit
Chokeberry, bittersweet, holly, crabapple, bayberry, roses
Canadians can also take heart by trying their gardening skills with a winter garden. Canadian Gardening magazine recommends that for the most northern climates, when frost is present from the months of November through until April, you consider growing conifers and broadleaf evergreen as “anchors” to your winter gardens.
Use Combinations of Winter Flowers in Winter Gardens
The magazine notes some interesting combinations of winter flowers and other winter plants that can add the most striking complementary colors and best landscaping designs.
These combinations would include cedar and yews, which display black tones, mixed with pines and spruce, with blue-green and powdery grey-blue tints. You can also try mixing bronze colored plants, such as Korean boxwoods and Siberian carpet cypress, with cinnamon color such as paperbark maple.
Winter gardening with the right landscape and design can provide an opportunity for anyone, from the hearty gardener to the novice, to experience the beauty of the colder months, enjoy pleasing combinations of winter plants and enjoy some of the freshest produce possible, right in your own yard.