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Winter Interest in the garden - part 1 - Evergreens.

21 comments


What interest I hear you cry? Well, there can be quite a lot. I have been out in my garden taking photos and I am going to write a set of blogs – not to say ‘Look at me. aren’t I clever!’ LOL, but to prove that EVERY garden, large or small, can still hold your attention at this seemingly dreary time of year.

Now I am lucky enough to have a large garden, which can ‘take’ large evergreen trees. This is Cedrus deodara – it isn’t full-grown yet by any means! However, for those with smaller areas of garden, how about a dwarf conifer? There are lots to choose from!

I keep this next one clipped as it would look very untidy otherwise and I can grow smaller plants round it, too. It adds interest to what would otherwise be rather a boring flower bed in winter.

Or how about a clipped box (Buxus sempervirens)? I like mine in a ball-shape, but you can buy topiary ones to grow through wire shapes – many different animals and birds.

Don’t forget evergreen plants with interesting leaves. just as one example in a huge range, Bergenias are decorative and may even produce a flower or two in winter! They don’t call them ‘Elephants’ Ears’ for nothing! I’d quite like one where the leaves go red/marooon in cold weather – but I shall have to track one down. You may already be lucky enough to have one in your garden.

I think that’s enough for now, I’ll keep blogging to try to keep your interest in winter gardening going! Watch this space!

I need to apologise to those of you whose gardens are deep in snow – but your garden will have its own special beauty, too. Look and enjoy!

To those members on the other side of the world and far away enjoying warmth and colour in your gardens – enjoy it, too! I’m not apologising to you, though!

More blog posts by spritzhenry

Previous post: Shrubs with the 'WOW' factor.

Next post: Winter Interest in the Garden - part 2 - flowers.



Comments

 

I fully agree with you Spritz. I have a few, I must say smaller specimens in my garden of Box clipped into different shapes, two Golden Irish Yews a few shrubs for winter interest and Lonicera nitilda that has been clipped into the shape of a squirel through a wire mesh.

16 Dec, 2008

 

I have a few evergreen plants in my garden, and you are right they do give a bit of interest in winter, i was going to take a photo of them over xmas.

16 Dec, 2008

 

I'd love to see them. Clarice!

16 Dec, 2008

 

We agree Spritz.
All gardens need to have what we call a good 'evergreen backbone' but not just for the winter months- they are essential for all year interest . The evergreens add structure, texture, form and colour.We have some very big evergreens in our garden although the space is small, so for folks who have a tiny garden don't be afraid to incorporate big trees, evergreens and specimen plants.They help to give the illusion of more space, and they help to mask the boundaries.

Although its essential for us to have the evergreens at this time of year in the U.K, we mustn't forget our international friends on G.O.Y will have the benefits of different seasons and climates right now.

They will probably also have lots of colour in their gardens depending on their locations.

16 Dec, 2008

 

You are right, Grenville - I shall edit my blog at once!

16 Dec, 2008

 

Evergreens are my favourite plants, perhaps because I don't like to fiddle about with annuals!! Look foward to more of your blogs of this subject.

16 Dec, 2008

 

how refreshing Spritz, really enjoyed reading this, and yes i do agree, not a fan of conifers myself, but you defo need some winter interest, i only have a small garden, but have been trying to add more and more winter interest recently, and i am really pleased with the results, although as it is a new garden which has been done on a buget, so a lot of my shrubs and trees have been bought small, will take a while before having the desired efect, but all part of the fun to see them grow. just to mention a few that i have chosen; Phormium, evergreen grasses, Photinia, Mahonia - a favorite of mine!, Rhododendron, Euonymus, Skimmia are among a few, Hebe 'hartbreaker' is stunning this time of year, as the pink seems to get pinker as well as some perennial plants that have winter interest. my dianthus pinks, have lovely blue grey clumps of grass like leaves this time of year, and the added bonus of beautiful scented flower through out summer, the list really is endless, and evergreen does'nt have to be big to be interesting, i was lucky enough to inherit a large holly tree and my pride and joy, 7ft Pieris. so i do have one or two big boys, that reall do provide back bone and stucture to the garden all year round.

16 Dec, 2008

 

Thanks for your reply Spritz.

G.O.Y now serves an international membership, and not all members will be experiencing the 'English winter' in their gardens at this point of time.

They are probably basking in wonderful sunshine while we shiver!

16 Dec, 2008

 

Your garden is looking really well Spritz.We too have evergreens cant imagine the place without them.Have mahonia,hellebores hebes and our favourites,,,,evergreen ferns.Also along the side of the cottage a winter flowering honeysuckle.

16 Dec, 2008

amy
Amy
 

We have a good selection of evergreens , I couldn,t imagine not having them either. they are the backbones , I have several hollies which we do swear about when all the prickly leaves fall amongst the other plants , having said that I couldn,t imagine the garden without them , we also have a large monkey puzzle which I should ask advice about as it shows signs of dying lower branches . I will ask advice later !

16 Dec, 2008

 

You are so right, Spritz! Our new garden is still as green as the day we moved in in September, thanks to its evergreen background. yet still, I overlook its usefulness at this time of year, for its loveliness outdoors, or for bringing some indoors for festive decor (must make a last-ditch effort). Well done, for highlighting these beauties, looking forward to the next blog!

16 Dec, 2008

 

Great blog Spritzhenry, you get all those who have winter now motivated to put on their work gear and get out there, when it is dry. Just as well the garden does get attention this time of the year otherwise nothing would look and do well in summer. Pruning would be one thing I presume. And there will always be weeds to pull up and leaves to be raked, snow to be shovelled I guess. Your garden looks lovely and those conifers are gorgeous. I also like your so called elephant ears, interesting looking flowers it bears.On the one but last picture do I notice a fatsia plant???

17 Dec, 2008

 

Already looking forward to part 2

17 Dec, 2008

 

Yes, Marguerite it is a Fatsia. It may well have a starring role in another blog! lol.

17 Dec, 2008

 

Interesting blog Spritz, it fascinates me how you have plants that adjusts well to the seasons, especially the winter. A Lovely garden you have and the conifers are beautiful!!

17 Dec, 2008

 

Await the next blog, you are lucky to have a large garden but as you say you can always keep your plants pruned to fit a small plot, sometimes it is more difficult with a smaller garden, well it is for me because I collect plants, just cant help it.

18 Dec, 2008

 

Just had another look at your blog, just in case I missed anything! What is the plant in the last but one photo? It is really attractive; some info about any special needs would be great. Thanks.

18 Dec, 2008

 

Hallo Gee - thanks for 'visiting' again! The plant in question is a Drymis lanceolata. It can grow into a largish shrub; it likes a sheltered position as it is not completely hardy. I like it, too! I think Andrew also has one - a bit bigger than mine.

18 Dec, 2008

 

Thank you, Spritz. As its not completely hardy it is probably not a good idea for my garden, unfortunately - cold winds whip across and it is often very frosty. Shame!

18 Dec, 2008

 

Thanks for prompting me to look at your blog Spritz! Glad you did because really interesting and helpful to a novice like me. Just off to catch up on part two!

20 Dec, 2008

 

Wonderful blog. Maybe a larch will move in next year, at least I know it'll live! They naturalize along the road in one spot and are a wonder year round. I leave everything buried under the snow for protection, but even in a frozen environment like mine, plants that sleep in winter can be brought in a conservatory or even just winter up in a cold closet or in front of the window, I've more ideas for bringing in all seasons of the garden now! I might add, bergenia lives through each year even here and blooms through the whole summer!

21 Dec, 2008

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