Winter has a reputation for being quite a monochromatic season. With the increasing absence of consistent sunlight the chlorophyll responsible for the colours in our foliage begin to diminish and very few of the flowering plants can survive the onset of harsh weather. In spite of this it is possible to create an interesting and colourful display to welcome visitors to your home in this festive season.
The best and simplest method would be to arrange a number of containers in your porch or by your front door and tailor their plant schemes as if one were customising a bouquet. We’ve included three examples of potential combinations below.
While the Skimmia will provide structure and depth to this group with its broad, evergreen foliage, the Galanthus, or Snowdrop, will provide a fresh snowy contrast to its red flower buds. The Cyclamen bulb will provide an upright conical flower in your choice of purple, pink, red or white, together with interesting marbled foliage.
The Vivelli variety of heather can provide excellent soil cover for larger pots as its long-lasting flowers are famous for both the density and abundance of their growth. The Gaultheria will off-set its bright pink blooms wonderfully, whilst adding a touch of winter white to an otherwise warm palette, made all the more so by addition of the Irises which will lend a deep shade of purple to the mix.
With the addition of the tropical-looking Cordyline – which would look more at home on a beach than six feet from a snow bank – this would seem a fairly exotic combination. However, despite the glorious, deep red foliage of this Cordyline, it is fairly hardy if placed in the shelter of the porch and it contrasts beautifully with the variegated Hedera helix and the vibrant yellow Narcissus.
By Josh Ellison