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While many may believe that winter flowering plants are an unattainable goal, this is not the case! 

Instead, winter can actually be the best time to experiment in your garden. You can grow winter vegetables, improve your soil quality, and most exciting of all, introduce some gorgeous new winter flowering plants to your plot! 

Rowan Cripps, paving specialist and founding director of Infinite Paving, has resultantly recommended several winter flowering plants to add a pop of colour to the winter landscape. 

1. Winter Aconite

Flowering period: January to February
Ideal growing conditions: Partial shade in moist but well-drained soil
Origin: The Mediterranean region

“Bearing golden yellow and white flowers with a characteristic green ruff, these beautiful perennials are the perfect addition to any drab garden. And they’re not just good-looking – the plants frequently come up through the snow, are capable of enduring small amounts of frost and require minimal care when planted correctly.”

2. Cyclamen Coum

Flowering period: January to April
Ideal growing conditions: Humus-rich soil in partial shade and mulched annually
Origin: The Mediterranean Basin (France, Italy, Turkey and Northern Africa)

“These delightful and hardy perennial flowers are known for their dainty, almost round blossoms. Brightening up even the darkest winter day, Cyclamen coum flowers appear in various shades of pink to purple.

Commonly grown due to their easy-to-grow nature, these plants thrive at the base of mature shrubs, trees and throughout your rock garden.”

3. Autumnalis Rosea (Winter-Flowering Cherry)

Flowering period: November to March
Ideal growing conditions: Warm and sheltered frost-free spaces with well-drained and slightly acidic soil
Origin: China and Japan

“As winter-flowering cherry trees are one of the first trees to flower, they are often the first sign of life following the depths of winter. The pale, off-white flowers complement any snow and are a great sight for an (albeit rare) crisp January sky.

Bred specifically to flower in the cold months, these small trees provide colour year-round and are a great addition to any garden.”

4. Christmas Rose

Flowering period: November to March
Ideal growing conditions: Moist but well-drained soil in partial shade
Origin: Central and southern Europe + Asia Minor

“Similarly to the Autumnalis Rosea, the Christmas Rose, also known as Helleborus Niger is one of the earliest plants to flower. With dark green leaves and bowl-shaped flowers that appear pure white or flushed with pink, these delicate plants flourish when planted in partially shaded borders.

These plants will also attract winter-active bumblebees, bringing life to your garden in more than one way!”

5. Snowdrops

Flowering period: January to March
Ideal growing conditions: Moist but well-drained soil in partial shade
Origin: Europe

“One of the most popular winter plants for a reason, snowdrops are stunning bright-white flowers. Similarly to the Winter-Flowering cherry, these radiant yet hardy plants are a sight for sore eyes in the middle of winter, growing when little else will. 

Just like the Christmas Rose, winter-active bumblebees love these plants and Mahonias, meaning you have all the plants required for some very happy bees!”

6. Mahonia ‘Winter Sun’

Flowering period: November to March
Ideal growing conditions: Acidic, moist and well-drained soil in shade, partial shade or full sun
Origin: Western North America and East Asia 

“While the name Mahonia references an incredible 70 species of shrubs and trees, we recommend the Mahonia ‘winter sun’ in particular. A long flowering variety, the plant blooms before offering purple flowers that attract an array of garden birds. 

With its easy-to-grow nature beyond the need for the odd prune, these amenable plants will not only liven up your garden in the winter but attract wildlife year round.”

7. Winter Jasmine

Flowering period: January through to March
Ideal growing conditions: Any soil, whether acid or alkaline and in cold areas or semi shade
Origin: China

“Winter Jasmine, or Jasminum Nudiflorum, is a ray of sunshine on a bleak day. With cheery yellow flowers off long-hanging vines, these plants are not only beautiful but a lazy gardener’s favourite due to their agreeable nature to almost any type of soil. 

Growing in almost any condition, the plant will survive the winter sun or shade, and looks great trailed up a trellis or wall.”

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