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It’s officially the most depressing month of the year. When the weather is bitter, the days are short and everywhere looks a bit drab and depressing. So let’s add a little happy burst of colour to greet you as you put your key in the door after a hard day at work. It’s time to talk winter window boxes.
Below is a list of the best winter flowering plants, ideal for window boxes, hanging baskets and borders. To make life easy, we have selected plants which you can find easily at your local B&Q or Homebase garden departments.
These are the best of the true winter-flowering plants. Blooming all winter long, Cyclamen will fill your garden with colour even on the dullest January and February days. They come in an extraordinary variety of colours so suit any colour scheme. As their flowers are on long stems, you do need quite a few of them to make a good floral display, but the leaves are interesting in their own right too.
These are one of my winter favourites. A well-loved ‘cottage garden bedding plant’ which faithfully reappears each year giving a burst of colour. This hardy perennial bedding plant is ideal in beds, borders, window boxes and containers to add sparkle to your garden on dull winter days.
Just as Violas are often confused with Pansies, Polyanthus are regularly confused with Primroses. They are more fragrant than their counterparts and the flowers are bitter and fluffier, less structured. Due to modern cross pollination and cultivation techniques, Polyanthus now come in somewhat more dynamic colours than their country-cottage cousins, so are great if you are looking for a slightly more modern edge to your window boxes.
There are so many jokes, books and films about ‘wallflowers’, that people often forget that it is actually a plant in its own right, rather than a generic term for something which climbs up a wall. Renowned for their sweet spring fragrance, while coping with even the poorest of soils, wallflower plants look great in beds, borders, containers and window boxes for a long-lasting, fragrant display.
A refreshing change to pansies and primroses Bellis is the perfect hardy perennial to brighten up the garden in spring. A relative of the daisy, these neat and compact plants produce masses of round, quilled blooms in pink, red or white. Bellis will keep on flowering right through the spring, from early February right through to the end of April, representing excellent value for money.
Pansies and Violas
Finally, the stalwarts of winter bedding displays. Pansies are so versatile they will bloom far longer than any other winter flowering bedding plant, providing a welcome splash of colour in beds, borders, containers, window boxes and hanging baskets! Violas look almost identical to Pansies, but they are generally slightly smaller and produce an abundance of dainty flowers. Some violas often have a delightful sweet fragrance too. Both plants are available in many colours, including white, purple, blue, red, orange and yellow.
Of course, your local hardware store will offer a reasonable range of planters for you to choose from, but if you want something a bit more stylish, take a look at Not on the High Street. They have some very glamourous and quirky ones which will add that additional bit of style and texture to your garden.
At Purely Shutters, we love telling you about our top tips for making your home look and feel beautiful, as much as telling you about our wonderful wooden shutters. We understand that a simple, strong design can lift the mood and make a house feel like a home.