Garden Notes

Winter colour in the garden

Published on 25 January 2010

If you need some inspiration why not visit my new website for some ideas where you can see some of the gardens that I have designed and planted? You can see all my previous articles from this column as well as ideas for your garden re-design and planting.

If you are doing things yourself, itís a good time to plant trees and shrubs and bulbs. Think about putting in something that is going to give you joy over the winter and early spring. Just one striking tree, shrub or area of bulbs can provide a focal point to be seen from the house or visited to enjoy.

Plants that make great winter contrasts are red stemmed dog woods (Cornus alba Sibirica) under-planted with bright yellow and green Euonymus Emerald and Gold, Bergenia which has lovely large evergreen leaves which colour red in the sun and frosts and inter-planted with Snow drops. Always plant bulbs in drifts, to make a real impact. Better to have one striking group than one bulb dotted here and there.

For further inspiration go and visit the stunning winter garden at the University of Cambridgeís Botanic Gardens. You walk through the surrounding hedge on a winterís day and itís as if someone has turned the light on. Or visit Anglesey Abbey winter garden, also near Cambridge. Even if you donít use the planting ideas yourself, a visit will cheer you up.

Happy gardening.

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