Winter Landscapes Can Be Beautiful Too!

Gray skies and gloomy weather are the norm for most of the winter season, but that doesn’t mean your property needs to look drab. You can easily add some “cold-weather flair” to your landscape with the right plantings this fall.

There are plenty of plants that will provide attractive colors, shapes and textures throughout the winter months. Consider some of the following:

Evergreens are an obvious choice for keeping things green over the winter. Some tried-and-true favorites include Austrian pine, Douglas fir and arborvitae.

Winter-blooming ornamental grasses or flowering plants such as heaths, heathers and witch hazel are great for adding a splash of subtle color.

For colorful berries or winter fruit, try barberry, cotoneaster, holly or pyracantha.

Eye-catching bark can be found on birch, Chinese elm, paperbark maple, shagbark hickory, sweet gum and sycamore.

Interesting shapes can also add life to your winter landscape. Beech, mulberry, weeping cherry and weeping willow will all stand out.

Attracting Birds in Cold Months

The cold grey winter months can seem desolate and dormant in contrast to the activity and life of the warmer seasons. Fortunately, Mother Nature does not totally shut down in the winter – she just needs a little coaxing to show her face.

Not all birds head south when the cold arrives. Welcoming these feathered friends to your winter lawn can add welcome movement and color to an otherwise dreary landscape. Providing food is a surefire way to bring birds to your yard. Food supplies for birds are scarce in the winter, making them more than happy to drop by if you are offering a free buffet. High fat foods such as suet, peanuts and sunflower seeds go a long way towards keeping birds fed throughout the winter.

If you can offer birds shelter from the elements as well as food, they will be especially grateful. Roosting boxes for birds can be bought or built and provite a refuge from bitter cold, wind and rain. The addition of evergreen shrubs or trees to your landscape can also give birds a place to call home when temperatures fall.

Birds and humans both win when you make your yard a sanctuary for birds. Give them a reason to stop by and they will fill your yard with color and life all through the winter.