Mother Earth Living

Winter Wonders: Plant a Winter Garden

How to maintain beautiful gardens during the cold months.
By Jennifer Jewell
November/December 2006
Add to My MSN

An elegant ponderosa pine stands over creeping juniper (Juniperus procumbens) at the southwest entrance to the Denver Botanic Gardens’ Japanese garden.
Slideshow


Content Tools

Related Content

Green Rookie: DIY Lighting

Need a new lamp? Make it, don’t buy it! Here’s how

Gardening with a Black Thumb: Joys of an Early Spring

Guest blogger Eileen Troemel shares images of the spring flowers blooming in her garden.

9 Winter Vegetables You Could Be Eating Right Now--And How to Prepare Them

Craving fresh food during the long winter months? Here are nine vegetables that you can find fresh i...

6 Ways to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint at Home

Take the initiative and reduce your carbon footprint at home with these six tips.

A solitary walk along the perennial border gone to seed, the sight of a snow-covered evergreen from your kitchen window, the soft angled sunlight through wheat-colored grass stalks, the shadow of a tree's branching silhouette.
Fleeting moments such as these make a winter garden worth the effort.

The garden in winter has an altogether different demeanor than in summer: It holds light, casts shadow, and hosts color and scent much differently. A winter garden sounds like a contradiction in terms, but if you plan well, winter might become a favorite garden season. "With a little forethought and preparation, the garden in winter can hold its own peaceful and lovely rewards," says landscape horticulturalist Warren Leach, co-owner of Tranquil Lake Nursery in Rehoboth, Massachusetts.

Winter is a time of serenity, pause and perspective, when gardeners rejuvenate while their plants are dormant. We're less harried by minutiae and detail work, less distracted by color and blossom, and more attuned to structure and form.

Being there

Comfortable access to your garden in winter will determine if and when you venture out and enjoy it at all. Make sure the places you like to get to—perhaps a favorite bench in a wooded corner—have suitable walking paths.

Then consider where to place plants to make the most of your regional conditions and your winter habits-both indoors and out. As when planning the summer garden, consider the views of the winter garden you'll see from indoors. "What you see from the spaces you use most-doorways, kitchen, living room, bedroom, bathroom-are opportunities for pulling your attention to the winter garden," Leach says. Lorene Edwards Forkner, garden designer and owner of Fremont Gardens in Seattle, concurs. "Perhaps you take your cup of morning coffee or tea to the same window every morning to look out," she says. "Make the most of this."

When choosing plants for winter interest, consider evergreen foliage; strong or interesting branching and overall plant form; bark texture or color; berries, cones or seed heads that hold up through a good part of the winter; and winter bloom and fragrance.

Colors for the Northwest








Post a comment below.

 


MY COMMUNITY
no image
HarvestRight
8/21/2014 5:22:39 PM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 10:03:07 AM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 9:59:22 AM
no image
NatureHillsNursery
8/20/2014 9:30:07 AM
no image
melisastarr
8/19/2014 12:57:22 PM
no image
Peggy McMahan
8/18/2014 11:29:51 AM
no image
lorina21
8/17/2014 10:16:45 PM
no image
lorina21
8/17/2014 10:15:23 PM






Subscribe today and save 58%

First Name: *
Last Name: *
Address: *
City: *
State/Province: *
Zip/Postal Code:*
Country:
Email:*
(* indicates a required item)
Canadian subs: 1 year, (includes postage & GST). Foreign subs: 1 year, . U.S. funds.
Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
Non US and Canadian Subscribers - Click Here

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living!

Welcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $14.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $19.95.