Horticulture - Winter, (January 2012)

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Even in the middle of winter, there are many qualities and attributes of gardens that can be enjoyed at this time of the year; in order to gain optimum satisfaction of the garden it is important that it is kept neat and tidy by removing dead and damaged parts of plants and disposing of all waste appropriately.

During winter many forms and textures provide interest giving gardeners and visitors pleasure, such as bare stems and branches, outlines and shapes of numerous plant forms (trees, shrubs, grasses, climbers), textures (evergreens, ground cover plants, bark, mosses, mulches) and colours like the bare stems of Cornus, berries on Ilex, or early flowering plants like Jasminus nudiflorum.

Look around your own garden, patio, window boxes or hanging baskets to see what nature has to offer at this time of the year, it is not too late to add a splash of winter interest maybe winter flowering pansies, Polyanthus, heathers or Solanum capicastrum. Look around in other gardens (private and public) for suggestions or as an exercise to see what is available, this is a good way to ascertain what your likes and dislikes are, it will also show you what works to provide a harmonious and pleasing effect and what does not.