There’s plenty of interest in the garden now and here’s a selection of a few plants in flower and looking great at the moment.
Callicarpa bodinieri ‘Imperial Pearl’
Also known as the Beauty Berry. This lovely deciduous shrub of upright habit has clusters of small pink flowers in midsummer, but it’s really prized for the clusters of striking, violet, bead-like berries that appear in autumn and remain after the plant has lost its leaves. The young foliage is often bronze-purple, becoming dark green in summer before turning golden-purple in autumn.
Cornus sanguinea ‘Midwinter Fire’
This deciduous shrub has oval, mid-green leaves and produces small, creamy-white flowers in May and June. But it’s really grown for the brilliant, flame-coloured stems that are revealed when the leaves, which turn orange-yellow in autumn, fall. It’s best in full sun, and works particularly well with red or purple-stemmed varieties of dogwood. The upright stems need to be cut back hard in early spring to promote long shoot extensions.
This delightful perennial provides colour often when little else is flowering, particularly in late winter or early spring. They are ideal for naturalising under trees, on banks or in a shady border. They make ideal companions for hellebores, snowdrops and other spring flowering bulbs. All have exquisite flowers and often have quite distinct fragrances, but even when not in flower, the foliage of many of these cyclamen species is outstanding.
Is a medium-sized deciduous shrub with long, arching branches which is widely grown as a wall shrub and does need to be tied in to it’s framework. It bears cheerful yellow flowers on bare stems in winter and early spring which really brighten up a dark, winter day.
Pyracantha ‘Soleil D’or’
This a tough, hardy evergreen shrub, bearing a profusion of brightly coloured berries at this time of year. During summer, plants produce white blooms which are followed by displays of bright yellow berries, providing food for birds throughout the winter. It is tolerant of a wide range of demanding conditions, including shaded and exposed positions. It grows into a dense thorny evergreen hedge and is perfect for covering boundaries as well as training against a wall.
Succulent leaves, topped with salmon-pink flower-heads in summer, maturing to pinkish-bronze then coppery-red in autumn. This versatile perennial is a perfect filler plant for a sunny, well-drained spot. A valuable late source of nectar for butterflies and bees, the dried flower heads provide structure and colour in the winter garden.