When we want to add color to our gardens, “flowers,” are a favorite choice because they provide a rainbow of colors. In the winter months, nature comes to rest and plants retreat to gain energy for spring. This leaves our gardens looking gloomy.
Fortunately, there are flowers full of color and warmth that can withstand winter weather. These flowers vary widely in form, growth habits, color, and size. These winter flowers can be used in all spaces, including pots, hanging baskets, garden beds, borders, etc.
There are two types of flowers; annuals, and perennials.
Annual flowers complete the lifecycle within one growing season. Annual flowers typically require more care than perennials.
Perennial flowers remain for many growing seasons. Normally during winter, perennials go dormant. They begin to grow again during the spring with the same root system.
Winter flowers are hardy and can tolerate very low temperatures. Mulch around these flowers and water very well before the first freeze. This will help protect the roots from cold weather.
Benefits of Winter Flowers
- Boosts your mood– Seeing pops of color when you arrive home will lift your spirits and help deter those “winter blues.”
- Health benefits– Indoor plants and flowers provide extra humidity which will help dry skin, dry throats, and coughs.
- Birds– Some winter shrubs have berries that birds enjoy.
- Shelter– Flowers can provide shelter for insects and wildlife.
- Exercise– Winter gardeners get a bit of extra exercise while tending to their gardens.
Check out this slideshow to see some of our favorite winter flowers.
Ornamental Kale and Cabbage
Ornamental kale and cabbage should be planted in the fall and will last all winter. A great thing about ornamental kale and cabbage is that their colors become more vibrant when temperatures drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. This boost of color will really make your yard stand out.
This plant comes in shades of pink, purple, blue, green, and white. If they have an established root system, they can withstand temperatures as low as 5 degrees Fahrenheit. True to its name, ornamental, these plants are for decorative purposes only.
Petunias, similar to ornamental kale and cabbage, thrive in colder temperatures. ‘Grandiflora’ petunias love fall and winter. Multiflora petunias prefer spring and summer weather.
These flowers are well-suited for containers, as well as, garden beds. The color options are endless. Literally available in every color imaginable. They do best in full sun and well-drained soil but can tolerate partial shade.
Pansies are a classic choice for autumn and winter gardening. Pansies are actually perennials but are often planted as winter annuals.
They have many color options and a long flowering season. The bicolor pansies are breathtaking and will appeal to everyone. If grown organically, pansies are even edible.
Sweet alyssum is well suited for winter weather. The flowers bloom in beautiful shades of white, pink, and purple. They grow well in hanging baskets and pots. Many people enjoy them in garden beds as well.
Cyclamen blooms from winter to spring. They come in various shades of pink, purple, red, and white flowers. The green leaves underneath the flowers are heart-shaped.
While this flower does thrive in cool temperatures; you’ll mostly see it as an indoor plant. Another fun fact about cyclamen is that it is a perennial, but instead of going dormant in winter; this flower goes dormant in summer when it gets too hot.
Winter gardening is wonderful not only because it adds a touch of beauty to your landscape design, but also because the emotional benefits are too good to pass up.
There is just something about the gray, gloominess of winter that makes you feel dreary inside. You can make that feeling disappear by incorporating some of these fun, winter flowers into your garden or home today.