Add a splash of color to the cold, dreary winter months by transforming your empty window boxes, planters and pots into vibrant showcases of colorful flowers and evergreens.
Winter is often seen as the gardening off-season, a time when many gardeners wait in anticipation for the lively arrival of spring. But, with a little creativity, you can turn your outdoor spaces into winter wonderlands that will make you appreciate the beauty of this often gloomy and gray time of year.
Some of the most beloved winter-blooming plants, like crocuses, Christmas roses and snowdrops, have the power to captivate anyone with their charming allure. If you live in an area prone to hard frosts, consider opting for hardy, cold-tolerant plants to keep your outdoor spaces vibrant.
And for those fortunate enough to have a winter greenhouse, the possibilities are endless. You can diversify your plant collection and stay busy tending to your green companions until spring graces us with its warmth.
Below, we’ve handpicked five of our favorite winter plants that can transform your window boxes and flower pots into enchanting focal points:
This low-growing evergreen shrub, also known as eastern teaberry, checkerberry or boxberry, hails from northeastern North America. Its vibrant red berries and fragrant reddish-toned leaves infuse the winter with a truly festive atmosphere.
Garden pansies come in a variety of colors, from yellow and brownish-red to white and purple, and they’re known for their resilience in cold winter weather. They can withstand even extreme frost, and as spring approaches, they burst into life once again. Prune the spent flowers and dead parts to encourage another round of blooms.
Cyclamen plants are incredibly decorative with their pink, red, white or purple flowers. While some opt to keep them indoors as houseplants, they can also thrive in a sheltered outdoor location, provided the temperature remains mild. If grown indoors, they prefer a cool room or a sunny windowsill.
Japanese skimmia is a hardy, winter-tolerant evergreen plant that graces us with deep red flower buds in clusters, starting as early as autumn. Consider pairing it with common heather (Calluna vulgaris) for a delightful companion planting.
Winter jasmine is a delightful addition to your winter garden. While not as fragrant as its spring-blooming counterparts, its bright yellow flowers bring a burst of sunshine to the otherwise cold and dreary months. This deciduous shrub, native to China, is hardy and easy to care for. It produces delicate, buttercup-like flowers on its leafless green stems, creating a striking contrast against the winter landscape. Winter jasmine is sure to capture your heart and add a touch of cheer to your winter window boxes and planters.
Blue bugle is a widely distributed, cold-tolerant, evergreen perennial. It goes by various names, including common bugle, bugleherb, bugleweed, carpetweed and carpet bugleweed. Typically used as low ground cover, it makes an excellent alternative to English ivy (Hedera helix).
Embrace Winter’s Natural Beauty
With these remarkable winter plants at your disposal, you can bring a burst of life and color to your outdoor spaces, dispelling the winter blues and turning your window boxes into captivating, eye-catching displays.