Winter may feel cold and colorless but your garden doesn’t need to be monochrome. Nature presents us with stunningly vibrant foliage and flowers that adds warmth to your garden and gives you a reason to be out in the sun on a wintry day.
Using a blend of seasonal winter flowering plants in a variety of containers is an easiest way to brighten up your garden. Place it at your entrance, align it along the pathway or position it on your window sill, they will add interest to your garden for months to come.
Add some plants to hanging baskets and place them outside your windows to add a color to the view from inside.
A Spark of colors
Pleasing fusion of bulbs and winter-flowering plants adds sparks of colors to your garden. Select from your local bulbs such as the classic white tube roses or go for Lilies, Daffodils, Tulips or Amaryllus according to the city you live in. Plant large Indian Dahlia for a bold splash of colors or clusters of tiny Alyssum flowers in containers. If you have an ugly wall to hide, grow tall stunning Holy Hocks. Options are endless,but here are some must-haves for this season: Petunia, Carnation, Marigolds, Antirrhinum, Salvia, Calendula, Dahlia, Geranium, Lupin, Pansies and many more. Select according to your taste and space.
Add fragrance and flavour
Yes flavor! Why not play with edible plants, vegetables, herbs and flowers! Here are some ideas:
– Combine a bush cherry tomato plant with chives or marigolds in a hanging basket.
– Mix together pansies with strawberries.
– Use mixed verities of leaf lettuce as fillers between your other ornamental plants.
– Blend Dill with Nasturtium flowers which are edible!
– Blend a contrasting color Petunia with strawberries or hanging tomatoes. Imagine a purple petunia plant with yellow cherry tomatoes hanging right on your favorite corner!
– mix dwarf sweet pea with Purple Cabbage.
Use plants with lush green or colored foliage and different textures. Have some perennials and annuals too along with the seasonal plants. Bring together plants that have similar needs( sunlight, type of soil, water) and also keep in mind about the space they will need to grow.
The options are endless so why not create a garden this winter that not only has stunning colors but also something much more.
Published in Express Tribune Classifieds on Sunday 27th November, 2011
Zahra Ali Husain is a sustainability educator, freelance writer and an environmentalist. She is also a co-founder of Organic City Pakistan and runs the Green Schools & the Horticulture Therapy programs along with Yasir Husain. Zahra also manages an organic farm.