Posted on Dec 12, 2023 at 5:26 pm by Matthew L
In summer, your pots, planters, flower beds, and borders overflow with colors and lively scents from flowering plants, annuals, biennials, or perennials. But in winter, everything seems quite sad. What if you brought a little cheerfulness to your garden, your balcony or your terrace with these flowers that are not afraid of frost?
Table of Contents
Hellebores, the queens of winter
It is unimaginable to start this series of flowers that are not afraid of frost without mentioning hellebores (Helleborus). There are several varieties of this perennial with evergreen foliage, hardy up to -15 °C.
Among them, we can mention Helleborus niger, the famous Christmas rose, which blooms as early as January in white or pink, or Helleborus orientalis which blooms later in winter.
The latter offers a beautiful range of colors, the flowers are sometimes speckled, single, semi-double, or double. Helleborus fetidus (a name it owes to its malodorous foliage when crushed!) produces yellow-green flowers bordered with purple.
These are perennials that take a little longer to establish but benefit from a long lifespan.
Pansies or violas, the essential biennials
Perfect for pots and planters, but also for flower beds, borders, and rockeries, pansies offer flowers of different sizes in multiple colors.
Although they have a somewhat old-fashioned appearance, they still adorn our gardens. Perhaps because they are very hardy, insensitive to cold and snow, and especially very floriferous throughout winter.
Purchased in pots, they can be planted as early as autumn and bloom until spring, or even summer.
Winter heathers, vigorous perennials
With their bell-shaped flowers that come in white, pink, or violet, winter heathers (Erica) are ground cover plants that color our gardens, balconies, or terraces from autumn to May.
Insensitive to cold and frost, winter heathers need a neutral to acidic, well-drained soil. Excess moisture would jeopardize their winter survival.
Winter aconite, the little late winter perennial
Admittedly, you have to wait until the end of January to see its small yellow flowers, quite similar to those of classic buttercups, its cousins.
But it is a real sun in pots and planters, or even in the undergrowth, under trees and shrubs.
It also needs a cool soil for winter aconite (Eranthis) to develop and bloom. However, in summer, its foliage disappears completely.
Snowdrops, the first bulbs to bloom
Snowdrops (Galanthus) are not at all afraid of the cold since they bloom under the snow, starting from January or February.
They are perennial bulbous plants that offer white bell-shaped flowers. The petals are sometimes marked with green spots. The flowers emit a delicate fragrance. Snowdrops thrive everywhere, including in pots and planters.
Cos cyclamens, for a colorful carpet
The flowers of Cos cyclamens (Cyclamen Coum) bloom from January to April. They bloom in white or pink, on round foliage, dark green, sometimes marbled with silver-gray.
The base of the petals is always marked with a purple spot. They appreciate the semi-shade of the undergrowth where they quickly form a beautiful carpet.
Chionodoxa, a plant to the glory of snow
This bulbous plant spreads in a colorful carpet from the end of winter. Their flowers, quite similar to hyacinths, come in white, washed pink, and blue.
It grows everywhere, in loose soil, but does not appreciate the heat of the South. It can even be cultivated in pots and planters.