- Well this is a tough one for me (Unique Commodities) because I have a brown thumb and I don’t much eat brownies! LOL! So I figured well a picture is worth a thousand words so Winter flowers it is! Quite honestly I think it is a wonder to admire that a beautiful flower can bloom during the harshest of winters.
A flower blooming in winter against the harshest of cold is likened to the persistence and perseverance of the very human nature to survive the most challenging of physical circumstances. While I am not a flower lover.. I give tribute to flowers that bring us warmth through its radiant beauty in the coldest of months.
Lavenders are Mediterranean in origin, so are great for water-wise gardeners. They thrive in well-drained parts of the garden, and only require minimal watering. Lavenders cope well in exposed, sunny, open positions, and grow to one-metre, bun-shaped balls. They flower prolifically in winter, and because lavenders are native to windswept areas of the Mediterranean coast, they respond well to pruning and can become leggy (grow abnormally tall due to lack of light) and straggly without it. Conduct two good prunings a year, after flowering, to cut back, followed by a fertiliser, such as blood and bone, to encourage quick re-growth.
The winter rose (Helleborus) is actually not a rose at all, but a low ground cover with shy, nodding flowers. I’ve been collecting them for years – I fell in love with their muted plum and green nodding blooms, pretty spotted markings and papery texture. They are perfect to pick, good to float in bowls and last forever. Hellebores are easy to grow and not demanding. Plant them in soil enriched with compost or manure and give them light-dappled shade. They’re perfect beneath deciduous trees such as magnolias, crepe myrtles and maples, where winter sunshine will encourage more flowers and the summer canopy will protect them from too much heat. After summer, I prune off old leaves, allowing sunlight to reach the plant to encourage flowering. Then I spread compost around them; contrary to popular belief, they do not like wet feet.
Primula obconica, better known as primrose, is lovely in winter. 30cm-high clusters of soft, lacy flowers come in white, pink, lavender and magenta and only last one season, from winter to spring. Better known is Primula malacoides, the fairy primrose; both are relatives of the humble cowslip. I like to plant them in pots for the house and garden to liven up bare spaces in winter. But be wary, this plant is capable of producing a toxic reaction if eaten, or a skin allergy when touched, earning it the nickname poison primrose.