Snow covered trees



On a typical winter day, when the sky is gloomy gray and the wind whirls through the trees, what is there to see that will renew the soul? Is there any color? Any movement? Anything to catch the eye?

Columnar yellow conifers by front door



In most landscapes, the most that can be hoped for is something evergreen, usually an overgrown Taxus or Rhododendron. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Good design creates a landscape that never stops giving inspiration and energy to the viewer. There are so many elements that can be included in a landscape or garden for winter interest.

Brightly colored bark of Acer palmatum ‘Sangu Kaku’




Consider incorporating trees and shrubs with colored and/or exfoliating bark and/or ones with unusual structure to be utilized as architectural tools.



Blue color of Abies concolor ‘Candicans’ foliage



Conifers (other than Taxus) may be green but may also be blue or yellow or tipped with white or cream and have different textures.They may also change color during the winter.

Heuchera ‘Southern Comfort’ with Juniperus ‘Eternal Gold’ for double winter color

Perennials that remain evergreen or evercolor, have imposing structure or have pods can also add winter interest.


Erianthus ravennae 


Don’t overlook ornamental grasses that retain their inflorescence for all or most of the winter


Colorful berries of Ilex meservae




nor woody ornamentals that have bright berries.