We usually think of flowers during the springtime and summer—even autumn has its mums and zinnia. But winter has its flowers as well—even some that can grow outdoors! Winter flowers can brighten even the longest, darkest December day and the coldest, dreariest February evening. Whether you want to grow them outdoors, or choose a colorful, traditional indoor arrangement, you won't regret giving yourself the gift of winter flowers.
Outdoor Winter Flowers
Perhaps the most recognizable winter flower is the cheerful, bright red Poinsetta. But Christmas Rose (Helleborus) can grow even in the snow, and its white flowers (which eventually turn a delicate pink) provide a subtle contrast the brash, richly colored Poinsetta. However, take great care with this flower—Christmas rose is poisonous and should not be planted in a yard frequented by children or pets.
Toward the end of winter, Crocuses, Snowdrops and Glory of the Snow begin to emerge from the cold ground. Glory of the Snow is a wonderful border plant, with tiny, lavender-blue flowers. Crocuses are a bright, cheerful yellow and can healthily bloom in even deep snow, giving early, much-needed hope for the coming spring.
Indoor Winter Flowers
Thanks to flower shops, we can get hothouse flowers at almost any time of the year. However, there are many flowers that grow more easily in winter and are traditional for winter bouquets. Carnations and Gerbera Daisies are simple, affordable, and come in a variety of colors--you can buy a big bouquet to make the kitchen or dining room even brighter on a dark winter day. Similarly, African Violets are easily obtainable and very easy to grow--a pink or purple violet can be cheerful company all winter long. Other traditional winter flowers include Pansies, Lilies, Narcissus, hothouse Orchids, Queen Anne's Lace, and the ever-popular and ever-pretty roses.