The festive season may be here but don’t neglect your outside space. While you’re busy beautifying your home and getting your tree ready, you can also create a magical space in your garden.
In fact, all it takes is a little planning and activity. Here, garden specialists Oeco Garden Rooms give their tips on creating the perfect winter garden wonderland.
1. GARDEN LAYOUT
Having the right garden layout from the get go is the most important thing, not only for the summer months when the flowers are in bloom but also the winter as the plants start to die off; this is where you will see the bare bones of the garden and if it is not laid out properly it can look gloomy and untidy.
Wall gardens, hedges and raised flower beds are all great ways of adding structure to the garden, providing designated areas for different activities and can be repurposed for different times of the year.
2. ADD SEASONAL COLOURS TO YOUR GARDEN
Adding seasonal colours such as red and white will make the garden more inviting and flowers such as Hellebores are a great choice. These flowers, sometimes known as the Christmas rose are pastel pink and white in colour and produce big leaves that fill the space in the garden. They flower for a long time as well, generally lasting between late winter and early spring.
Another white flower to consider is Clematis Jingle Bells; these flowers have a bold white colour and typically flower from December to January. Clematis Jingle Bells will need some pruning to keep the size down as they can grow up to five metres high.
Fir trees are the quintessential winter wonderland accessory especially when it snows; they are evergreen and require very little maintenance, but be sure to choose a small species of fir tree as some can grow up to 80 feet tall.
For a festive touch in your garden, why not opt for a holly tree. Make sure that you get a male bush are these are the ones that produce those signature red berries. For those who do not have the space for a Holly tree, Cotoneaster horizontal is or Pyracantha are a great choice for adding a pop of colour to the garden.
3. THE WINTER SCENT
While the inside of the house smells of cinnamon, spices and oranges to evoke the festive spirit, the garden is largely forgotten, but there are various ways of creating the sweet smell of winter in the garden with scented flowers.
Planting Witch Hazel is a great choice to add a wintery scent to the garden; its large yellow flowers release a delicious scent of liquorice into the air. Winter honeysuckle is also a good choice, producing a lemony-fresh scent.
For those who want an evergreen shrub that has little maintenance then Sarcococca is the perfect fit. Commonly known as the Christmas Box or Sweet Box, Sarcococca produces small white flowers with a lush, leathery foliage and best of all it exudes a fragrant honey scent during the winter.
4. DECORATE YOUR WONDERLAND
Your winter garden wonderland wouldn’t be complete without some decoration. Fairy lights and lanterns are a great way of creating light in an outdoor space and can be hung on trees, draped over bushes or hung from outdoor structures like sheds, garden rooms and decking.
For those on a budget, there are plenty of things to do that won’t cost a lot of money including tying festive ribbons to tree branches, hanging wreaths around the garden and decorating trees with baubles and tinsel.
5. BUILD A FIRE PIT
Many people give the garden a miss during the winter months because of the cold, but adding a heat source is easy and cheap and provides an outdoor space that can be used all year round. Patio heaters and chimera’s are a great way of adding heat to the garden, and building your own fire pit is a cheap way for the whole family to gather around and enjoy.
6. ATTRACT ROBINS TO YOUR GARDEN
If there is one bird that evokes a winter wonderland, then it’s a robin redbreast. These majestic birds are strongly associated with Christmas, taking a starring role in many festive cards since the mid-19th century.
Robins will often come when other birds are around, so make sure that you put plenty of food out for all the birds. Black sunflower seeds and seed balls are great for attracting various species of birds, but be sure to avoid dried lentils as only certain birds can eat them. Robins are also fond of crushed nuts so placing some on a bird table is sure to get them knocking.