A Colourful Winter

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Living Local - Winter 2014

 

Whilst the temperatures can be a little on the chilly side,
there are plenty of plants that flower throughout winter to
warm your heart - here are just a handful of my favourites.

 

 

2 Primulas absolutely scream winter. They flower profusely, come in a multitude of colours and make perfect potted plants. The Primula family is large and diverse but the most commonly planted varieties are malacoides which have bunches of small blooms on delicate stems and obconica, with their larger leaves and flowers. A close relative is the Polyanthus . Pinching off dead flowers and feeding regularly with Yates Thrive Flower & Fruit™ soluble plant food will encourage repeat blooming. Put some at your front door – the cheerful colours will make you forget it’s winter time.

 

3 There are many varieties of Pieris japonica, growing anything between 1 and 3 metres. From late winter into spring, they bear beautiful sprays of pendulous flowers which vary in colour from white to shades of pinky-red. The new foliage is commonly a reddish-copper colour which in most varieties turns to pale pink, cream and finally green. For best results, plant Pieris in semi-shaded areas with good drainage, apply Garden Gold™ which is a controlled release fertiliser lasting 2-3 months  and mulch well to avoid drying out. The most popular varieties are Temple Bells, Forest Flame, Shojo, Christmas Cheer & Mountain Fire.

 

4 Daphnes are a firm favourite because of their sweet smelling flowers which form in clusters. They like to be in morning sun or dappled shade, with good drainage but they do not like being overwatered. The most common variety is Daphne odora with its pale pink flowers – pick some and place in a vase inside and enjoy the perfume that will waft through your house for weeks.

 

5 Cymbidium orchids are grown for their spectacular, colourful flowers and architectural foliage. In winter, enjoy the blooms inside in a brightly lit area and water the plant just once a week, allowing the excess water to drain. Never let your orchid wollow in water as it may cause root or fungal problems. After the many weeks of flowering you’ll get from these fantastic plants, move them outside to a morning sun position and feed monthly with Strike Back For Orchids™ fertiliser pellets.