Just because it's going to turn cold in a few months, doesn't mean your yard has to look dull or lifeless. It's time to start planning and planting a few winter flowers that will stay colorful while everything else is brown and leafless or even dormant. Adding evergreen or other cold hardy perennials will ensure an interesting winter garden.
One such flower is the Arum (Lords and Ladies, Arum Lily). A deer resistant plant, it is easy to grow in a wide range of soils and moisture levels, although Arums prefer part sun and well-drained soils. Arums are dormant in the summer and emerge in fall and winter.
Arum italicum are winter flowers that make an interesting ground covers because of several features. One is the foliage of the plant with its distinctive green and white markings on arrowhead-shaped leaves (like those of caladiums and elephant ears). The leaves are eight to twelve inches long and first emerge in early autumn each year. They stay evergreen throughout the winter months. This display of color adds diversity to the landscape.
Arum italicum 'Marmoratum' flowers in late spring when 12” white peace lily-like blooms appear followed by an attractive stalk of red berries. Arum italicum 'Marmoratum' then goes to sleep for a while and emerges in late August. Another Arum is Arum sintenisii (Sintenis Arum or Purple Peace Lily). It produces large, 1' arrow-shaped green leaves in fall and blooms in May.
Other winter flowers worth mentioning are Heuchera (Coral Bells) and Helleborus (Lenten Rose). Heucheras are known for their wide variety of leaf colors which range from chartreuse to copper to purple. Hellebores are perennials with winter flowers that are a must-have for your woodland shade garden. Sometimes it is the only plant blooming in your garden in February, so why not plant more? All of the plants mentioned in this article can be found at Plant Delights Nursery. Give us a call or check out our website. We would love to help you pick out some winter flowers that are hardy in your zone and add interest to your winter garden.