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The Winter Garden

The Pleasures of the Season

A well-designed garden is beautiful every moment of the year, even in the winter.

Whether you are enjoying your garden out the window from the warmth of your home, strolling through your sleeping landscape, or dreaming of the spring in your armchair by the fire, the garden-related pleasures of winter brighten the shorter, darker days.

Take the time to see your garden through a fresh lens, as it looks and feels so different this time of year. Design elements such as color, form, texture, repetition, scale, and line are more apparent in the bareness of the winter garden.

Perhaps you will notice an area that could use additional interest, a view to the neighbor that needs screening, or the perfect spot for an ornament or piece of art.

The details of a garden are more obvious now, too- the peeling bark of a river birch, the symmetry of an evergreen planting, the colorful twigs of a dogwood shrub, the graceful branching structure of a Japanese maple, or an exquisite snow-covered witchazel.

Stroll through the garden and gather a clutch of makings for a simple swag to hang at the entry to your home, branches of forsythia or quince for forcing, or a hellebore bouquet for the dining table.

Grab your warm coat and blanket and enjoy an outdoor fire. Gather the supplies for s'mores in a basket. Share hot chocolate from a thermos.

Enjoy dreaming of the garden from inside. Brighten your space with a potted flowering plant from a local nursery. Grab a favorite drink and pursue seed and plant catalogues. Visit garden-related online stores for inspiration - Flora Grubb and Terrain are two of my favorites!

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