Plants for early colour
Late Winter-to-early Spring is an exciting time in the garden, with plenty of shoots and buds forming. If you plan for early flowers and fragrance too, those first sorties to clear away Winter’s debris will be all the more magical.
Snowdrops, hellebores, cyclamen coum and the bright yellow winter aconites flower from late January or early February, soon joined by narcissi and iris reticulata, crocuses, muscari, primulas, pulmonaria, anemone blanda, and ranunculus ‘Brazen Hussy’.
Shrubs are important at this time too, attracting insects for birds, providing nectar for bees and lovely smells for gardeners. Witch hazels and daphnes are among the earliest, and Lonicera Winter Beauty - a powerhouse of fragrance which needs regular pruning or it will get big. Viburnum tinus follows farreri and bodnantense – and clematis, such as Pixie, Early Sensation and clematis armandii Snowdrift are all very early Springers.