The last of the summer barbeques are over. The grills have been cleaned and put away. The sunscreen and bug spray are all packed up. And that back-to-school feeling is in the air. Sometimes it seems as though summer will last forever. Then it wraps up in the blink of an eye, and suddenly, we find ourselves halfway to winter! As time inches ever-closer to the coldest months of the year, I am already thinking about plants for fall and winter, planning my winter container garden, and considering some winter plants for my yard. If you are a go-getter who is ready to starting planning ahead for your winter garden, read on. |
Select Your Themes
The first task I always take on as we switch seasons? Theming. This is an easy one. I take a walk through my gardens and remove any items from past miniature garden themes, such as 4th of July decorations, miniature accessories from spring, and my back-to-school signs. Back inside, I re-organize my holiday accessories and Christmas fairy houses. In addition to Thanksgiving and Christmas themes, some gardeners like to make New Year’s gardens, ice skating rinks, “winter wonderland” snow gardens, and other creative scenes. Faux snow, cotton “snow,” snowflake picks, and even a little bit of white glitter can help give your garden a shaken-snowglobe feeling, no matter the weather.
Choose Your Containers
While some of my winter plants will remain outside during the cold months, I do like to plan winter container gardens that bring a little warmth and seasonal joy inside. I have seen square flower boxes wrapped up to look like Christmas presents, flower pots decorated with glitter and faux snow, and festive metal baskets tied with holiday ribbon. There are countless ways to create winter container gardens for the mantel, desk, dining table, and other parts of the house. Try searching online for winter container garden ideas.
Winter container gardens can be weatherized for outdoor use. Spray basket planters and metal containers with a coat of spray paint. This will help prevent the metal from rusting. Clay pots can be sprayed with pot sealer.
Prepare Your Plants
As you prepare to winterize your fairy garden, you will want to consider the various plants you have in your yard and containers. Miniature trees, shrubs, and perennials need a period of cold dormancy in the winter. Bring them into an unheated garage or porch that averages between 32 and 50 degrees. They should not freeze or thaw. Succulents can be overwintered in sunny rooms of at least 50 degrees. For other outdoor winter plants, consider your growing zone. Some may be rugged enough to survive winter in your zone. (If you use faux plants in your fairy garden—congratulations! You can leave them outdoors. Think about adding some fast-acting glue to your faux plants and miniature accessories to make sure they do not blow away during winter storms.)
One of my favorite winter plants is Ajuga, also known as bugleweed. These evergreen perennials are deer-resistant and offer colorful foliage all year long. While they are not winter flowering plants, they will produce flowers in the summer months. In cold climates, bugleweed will go dormant over the winter.
Sedums and stonecrops also tend to flourish in the winter container garden. These are perennial succulents with fleshy leaves, bright colors, and a world of beauty. Hardy, spreading, and low to the ground, sedums are a winter gardener’s best friend.
There you have it! As you prepare your winter container gardens and choose plants for fall and winter, remember: The summertime sun will appear again. Enjoy the chilly weather and fluffy snow while you can, as we will be back in the hot and humid miniature garden before we know it.
Miniature Gardening' offers miniature trees, accessories, fairies, garden tools & dollhouse furniture to create enchanting miniature landscapes for containers or your yard. Story telling and imaginary fairy garden from 'Miniature Gardening' bring the playful kid out in all of us. Filled with intrigue and mystique each little Miniature Fairy garden accessories scene you create is a snapshot of such a dream.
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