It’s normal for your yard to fall into disarray in winter. But it doesn’t have to be that way!
There’s a lot we can do for our winter gardens.
You can still keep the texture and structure with just a few amendments. And once the snowy season starts, it will only stress the features you added.
What am I talking about? It’s the plants my friends. Evergreens, ornamentals, and containers!
Let’s get started!
#1 Evergreen Foliage
Evergreen foliage is a key to success when it comes to winter gardens. What I love about these plants is that there is something for everyone.
There are evergreens perfect for small gardens. Rows of pines find their home in larger yards. Spruce and cypress are for something in between.
In fact, holly, boxwoods, spruce, cypress, and pines are ideal for every setting. They will bring more life to your snowy garden. These evergreens will also attract wildlife. Birds will munch on their berries and build nests in their thick branches.
You can also go a step further. Hedges and pine rows are great, but our gardens need more. Weeping and columnar evergreens will bring more structure and dimension to your yard.
What if I don’t need more structure, but color, you may wonder? In that case, try the amazing sunshine ligustrum. Its evergreen leaves turn vivid yellow in winter.
Combine the classic green evergreens with variegated, chartreuse, and silver foliage. All these plants will give your winter-garden much-needed interest.
#2 Winter-Blooming Plants
Evergreens aren’t the only way to add a pop of color to your winter garden. There are many flowers that bloom in mild winters you can incorporate.
Cyclamen, Christmas roses, and witch hazel are all great choices. Some can even thrive in colder regions. Witch hazel, for instance, is perfect for zones 3-9. It will produce fragrant yellow blossoms that fill the crisp winter landscape.
Tell me, who doesn’t want flowers in the midst of January? They let us know that our gardens aren’t dead – just sleeping!
You can combine these flowers and shrubs with early-blooming bulbs. Snowdrops are my favorite. These heralds of spring pop their weepy white heads as early as January.
Follow the snowdrops with aconites. That way, you’ll get a colorful interest from winter until spring.
#3 Ornamental Grasses
Ornamental grasses are a fall garden staple. But did you know that they can keep your winter garden lively, too?
Their soft texture and dancing movements add so much to wintry landscapes. Try planting flame grass. Its plumes turn white in winter and go well with the cold theme.
Or embrace the brown shades. Copper, ochre, and khaki tones will soften the winter cold. You can also combine them with red tones, but many landscapers feel that gardeners overdo it. Keep it simple, and you can’t go wrong.
Even leaving your perennial pruning for spring can help.
This will bring more architectural interest to your garden. Many perennials produce seed pods. These look amazing when covered in snow. And they act as a great food source for wildlife.
#4 Container Garden
There’s a solution for your small garden, bare deck, or balcony. A container garden! It provides most interest throughout spring, summer, and fall, but no one says you can’t use it in winter.
Leaving your planters empty or with bare dirt screams winter sadness. But fill them with smaller conifers, boxwoods, or deciduous shrubs and they’ll transform your landscape.
There are amazing plants for holiday decorations you can choose from. Winterberry holly will introduce red shades to your landscape.
Stonehenge yew will add green and red tones ideal for Christmas. False cypress will turn your garden into a winter wonderland with its blue and green tints.
#5 Dramatic Lighting
There are many cool things for your backyard you never knew you needed, and one of them is clever lights.
We deem outdoor lighting a summer decoration. They turn our patio or seating area into an extension of our living rooms.
But we forget the charm they bring in winter!
They create a relaxing atmosphere and highlight the beauty of our snow-covered evergreens. Strategic lighting can make the winter garden come to life. You can use them to highlight certain areas, create shadows, and add more dimension.
Give your garden a wintry makeover with lanterns or string lights hanging on your trees or patio. Use soft lights in your ornamental grasses to follow their movements.
Add wall lights to emphasize the length of your garden even on winter nights. Even spotlights can find their way into a winter garden design. They will light up your trees and cast enchanting shadows.
Simple lights can do a lot for your winter garden without making it feel too christmassy!