William Cullen Bryant famously called Autumn “the year’s last loveliest smile.” And he was right. Though the deep southern location of Louisiana means the fanfare of bright reds, yellows, and oranges may not last as long, it is no less glorious. Sadly, Autumn passes and with that comes the dreaded annual descent of the American yard into months of bareness and an achromatic state. But did you know that there are plants that burst forth with color, texture, and brightness, even in the dead of winter? Here are five of the best cold-weather beauties to add interest to your Louisiana yard in every season!
If you want a burst of fiery color in the dead of winter, winterberry is for you. Kin to the holly bush, this shrub is a lovely low-maintenance addition because it is highly resistant to diseases and pests. Our favorite part? Winterberry sports a vibrant coat of shapely green leaves until the late fall, when it sheds them to show off a magnificent display of firework-red berries. Be sure to plant a male and female nearby to ensure you see berries. Use this nifty guide if you’re planting them this fall.
Pansies are known as one of the few plants that bring color to a landscape even in the dead of winter. But plentifall pansies, a new series developed in the last decade, now offer more than color and winter hardiness. They have a unique growth habit of trailing, or extending to droop over or grow along a surface. This makes them perfect plants to hang or spruce up large flower beds. Better yet, they come in 3 colors: blue, purple, and white, each with soft brush stroke-like center lines to add interest. Keep plants routinely fertilized and watered, even in the cold, to ensure total health.
Offering up reminders of creamy, summer orangesicles in the chilly months, there’s the calendula. Resembling the shape of a daisy with additional layers of plush petals, adding to its pomp, it is perfect for the mild-winter climate of Louisiana. If you have a barren area that gets full sun, try planting calendulas. For bright, eye-catching blooms, there’s the staple orange and yellow shades, and for subtler landscape accents, there are softer yellow, apricot, and off-white versions.
Commonly known as heather, Erica plant is a way to bring the liveliness of South Africa right to your front yard. Originating in the Cape Peninsula, this plant is equally splendrous as it is elegant. It’s blooms stretch upright to the sky to show off the full extent of their deep pink blossoms. These striking, feminine plants (they come in white, too) may be soft and fluffy to the touch, but they are anything but shy in their color and appeal. Here’s a guide to help you choose the best version of heath.
Imagine looking out your window on a cold winter morning to see a tree, barren of leaves, but bursting forth with thousands of small suns of buttery, golden tufts. This is the witch hazel. As the queen of winter, the witch hazel’s blooms are reminiscent of spring. And unlike many cold-weather bloomers, she offers a year-round show. Some species’ foliage parade brilliant color in fall before falling to the ground, still leaving the bright yellow fruit tufts to provide even better color in winter. If you want a counterfeit appearance of spring to get you through January, February, and March, try this famously vase-shaped, landscape gem.
Remember, there are hundreds of options available in the mild-winter climate of Louisiana to keep your yard vibrant and attractive in the “off-season.” And no matter how you plan to spruce up your yard this winter, be sure that your selections are appropriate for the climate and your lifestyle. Moreover, take note of the proper care and maintenance necessary to keep your additions thriving. If you’d like some professional help, TruGreen Midsouth offers flower bed care services that can be tailored to a wide array of diverse landscape elements, including those listed above.Request your free quote today!