How to make your garden festive and welcoming this season
A cheerful winter garden creates that warm, cosy feeling that makes you appreciate being indoors even more. As the nights remain dark, here are our easy tips to keep your winter garden glowing and impress your guests.
LET THERE BE LIGHT
Nothing banishes the winter gloom better than a jaunty string of lights. Choose outdoor fairy lights with soft yellow tones which can be strung around trees or railings to give the front aspect of your home a welcoming glow. In the back garden, a jolly string of lights creates a great atmosphere for socialising. You can even wind them around potted plants by the front door. Be sure to pick hardy, outdoor lights that are weather- and waterproof. Battery powered ones make for easy moving and installation, whereas mains-powered lights are more permanent and hardwearing but require more specialised installation. Either way, this will give your garden that extra touch of magic!
With the cold drawing on, it gets more difficult to spend time in the garden. Potted plants can help maintain a thriving garden without needing so much nurturing. A robust, frost-hardy container for your potted plants helps you control the state of your soil and keeps the garden looking neat and organised during the winter. As garden sizes shrink, this trend is only getting more popular. Pick evergreen shrubs for guaranteed green during the winter – they are low-maintenance, and can be found in silver, gold and variegated colours. Bring the outdoors inside with colourful pot plants like poinsettia and orchids.
Lay stepping stones or small tiles through your garden. This stops you walking on frosty grass and damaging it. Get creative and make a mosaic with three or four complementary tones, or use individual round or square slabs to create a path through your garden. Lay them before the soil hardens with the cold and they will last you all year round. This will make an attractive feature and lets your guests admire your garden in the winter without worrying about muddy shoes.
Robins are the only garden birds to sing throughout the winter – encourage them by attaching robin-friendly window feeders to your outside windows. They like to cling to the edges, so dome feeders suit them, which can be hung from trees and adjusted to encourage little birds. They are fiercely territorial, so once they've made your garden their home, you'll be sure to see them regularly. They love mealworms, and make a lively, seasonal addition to your wintry scene.