Winter brings with it dark days, lots of cloud, copious amounts of rain, bitter frost and potentially snow. This spells trouble for many aspects of life, but none more so than your garden.
The lack of sunlight, over saturation of rain and cold frost prove to be a deadly combination for gardens every year, leaving many back yards looking desolate and severely lacking in life. For those who put lots of time and attention into their gardens, it can be disheartening to say the least to watch all the hard work and cultivation of spring and summer be washed away with the winter rain.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though. Believe or not, your garden doesn’t have to look lacklustre in winter; in fact, it can still be colourful and teaming with both plants and wildlife. In this article, we’ll explore five ways you can breath some TLC into your garden without the winter ruining your efforts.
Not all plants are defeated in growth by the winter months, some actually thrive. There are many different types of plants that produce colourful flowers during winter, but one of the best is the sweetest honeysuckle. Not only does it smell delicious and make for beautifully aromatic floral arrangements within the home, it blooms into creamy white flowers within the winter. Growing up to 10 feet tall and low on maintenance, this is a great climber to add some much needed life into your garden this winter.
Another great flowering option is snowdrops. Famed for their ability to grow quite happily in the coldest of temperatures (hence the name ‘snow’ drops), these crisp, white flowers come to fruition in the peak of winter, giving you something to look forward to if the season seems to be dragging.
It’s important to give wildlife a helping hand in winter, and one way you can do that whilst adding some colour to your outdoor space is with a berry bush. We’ve all heard of holly bushes, but perhaps more striking than a holly plant is its cousin, the winterberry bush.
With mounds of crimson red berries, the winterberry spans up to 15 feet and will attract dozens of garden dwellers at the same time as romanticising your back yard at an otherwise colourless time of year. The branches remain sparse in winter, giving the berries a wonderous contrast in your garden before the green leaves return in the warmer months.
The cold weather can take a lot out of your lawn, and there’s a risk that your beloved grassy turf won’t recover. Lack of sunlight, excess water and potentially cutting it too short can turn your emerald green lawn from a wonderous underfoot carpet into a muddy and sparse nightmare.
Arguably the biggest feature of any garden, when your grass goes, the rest of your garden aesthetic certainly feels the pinch. The solution? Artificial grass. It looks like grass, it (sort of) feels like grass, but it isn’t grass. You don’t have to mow it and it doesn’t die, so it maintains a beautiful, wispy pile height and vibrant green colour all year round. It’s friendly for pets and children alike, so no more falling over in the mud and constantly scrubbing the floors when the children (or dogs) want to go and play outside.
Winter is a time for hearty stews and vegetable soup, so why not grow your own? The sprouting green tops will bring some natural colour to your garden, and knowing your garden is producing tasty goods will certainly distract you from how drab your outdoor space potentially looks. Whilst you won’t be able to grow exotic fruits, you can still grow things like onions, kale, broccoli, spinach and parsnips.
Adding colour to your garden doesn’t just have to be done through your lawn and your plants, you can add a bit of much-needed sparkle with outdoor string lights. Attaching them to your fence or back wall can instantly brighten up your garden and make it look more pleasant.
If you don’t have a suitable surface to attach string lights to, you can purchase floor lights that can be planted into the soil or sit on top of your paving/along the permitter of your garden. Choose ones of varying colours and designs – just make sure you don’t add too many as your garden could quickly turn from cute into an airport landing strip!
There are so many ways you can make your garden look good this winter; even the smallest change can have a big impact on how your back yard looks, so don’t resign yourself to a lifeless and grey garden, spruce it up using the tips above.