My winter garden is a little like a trail mix (without the trail). Just a small corner area of my garden, the goal here was to have winter plants that either bloomed or had other interest (berries, colorful foliage) during the winter.
This area is made of six rectangular beds framed with evergreen boxwoods, and form the backbone to this entire garden. Like the peanuts in a trail mix, they are abundant, plentiful, and a part of every bite. Let's dive into this trail mix of a garden and see what other flavors can be found there:
Bite #1 is a sweet delight, like a dried cherry:
This first rectangle has a rose in it. Of course! You knew I'd put a rose here somewhere, and this area gets full sun. The rose here is 'Souvenir de St. Anne's', a bourbon rose that keeps its leaves even in winter. The rose fills out the boxwood rectangle perfectly, and for additional winter interest, there is a holly that covers the brick wall to its right.
Bite #2 is like an almond. Not flashy, but a little different from just a handful of peanuts:
|(Photo taken in November)|
An abelia fills this rectangle. It blooms all summer and through the fall, and is evergreen so it looks nice all year.
Bite #3 brings to mind cashews. Not my favorite nut, but it can be nice to have a different taste sensation:
A gardenia fills this rectangle. It only blooms in summer, but it is evergreen. I have hardy cyclamen planted with it, but they have not bloomed this year, and they are not tall enough to see unless you bend over the bed to see them. Some changes will be coming to this area soon!
Bite #4 is much like the raisins in a trail mix - expected, even if they are unexciting:
A common nandina and a holly bush fill in the corner and are both easy to grow. Not a lot of excitement, but it does make for some beautiful foliage interest.
Bite #5 would be considered my favorite. It's the chocolate bits:
This is my favorite area in my winter garden. It is filled with hellebores, which make a nice evergreen ground cover, and a small camellia that has bloomed all autumn and which will eventually grow to just the perfect size.
Bite #6 is the sunflower seeds. They are so small, sometimes they leave me with a sense of dissatisfaction:
This is my problem rectangle. :( I had two camellias here. One died. I've ordered some additional plants. They haven't arrived. The annual cyclamen are blooming. But they are so short, they are easily overlooked. This bed will get a complete re-do soon. (Re-read the sentence about ordering additional plants!)
So, there you have it. My trail mix of a winter garden area. I love the idea, and the challenge, of an area filled with winter plants. This part of my garden may not be the main course, but it allows a little bite - I mean bit - of gardening in winter.