SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder – is exactly that. When winter skies hang low, we start to feel a little dreary. But gardeners instinctively know what to do. We head into the garden to potter around and turn our faces to the winter sun. We also crave and look for colour in the garden.
We want bright, cheery plants that will give an emotional boost each time we see them. Here’s how I go about giving myself a garden colour boost.
1. Find the focus areas of your garden. Places where you will notice colour, such as near your front door, your kitchen door or outside the living room window. Look around for plants that give your heart a little leap. This winter I’ve opted for some Pacific™ coprosmas, as well as that classic all-time favourite primroses, with their rainbow palette. Gather together a few containers, plant them out and cluster near the door, on the back step, or nest them into the garden bed. Even under a grey sky day, the colour will pop and the garden will feel much cheerier.
2. Take it indoors. As long as you keep your plants near the light, but not so close that the night time chill stresses them, they’ll be happy to share your space. Just keep an eye on them so they don’t dry out completely. And be sure to send some of them back to the outdoor balcony in spring. Choices like canna Tropicanna® look fantastic back-lit against a window, or try a bromeliad which is happy to live indoors year round.
3. Why not colour-proof your garden all year? I’ve just pulled out an old hedge of English box and planted a row of Pacific™ coprosmas. They’ve bushed up incredibly quickly and as nice as they look mid-winter, I’m looking forward to late spring when my Flower Carpet® Pink Supreme starts to bloom and picks up the pinks in the hedge foliage. Should be pretty special!