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Fast-Growing Plants in Winter

hellebore image by Alison Bowden from

Winter-blooming plants provide a burst of bright color to the often colorless landscape. Their green foliage and interesting blooms withstand the cool temperatures and frost that winter often brings. Fast-growing winter plants speed up this process for a vibrant garden in a short period of time. Grown in a wide range of heights, shapes and textures, winter plants create a showy garden display.

Winter Daphne

Winter Daphne (Daphne odora 'Marginata') is a winter-blooming flower that grows 3 to 6 feet tall and wide. Filling the winter garden in no time, winter Daphne features pink buds that open to white flowers. Frost-tolerant, winter Daphne is an ideal flower to grow along a backyard patio for a constant source of color for a winter garden. The yellow-edged, green leaves of winter Daphne contrast with the pale bloom for a showy garden display. Winter Daphne requires full sun to part shade and fertile, well-drained soil that is slightly acidic to alkaline. Winter Daphne cannot withstand overly dry soils and resents being transplanted. Grows well in USDA Hardiness Zones 7 to 9.

Double Queen Lenten Rose

Lenten rose ‘Double Queen’ (Helleborus odorus 'Double Queen') is a perennial flower with a clumping habit. Beginning in winter, double queen Lenten rose produces its double-flower head to light up the garden with its unusual bloom. Pink, salmon or white, the double queen Lenten rose flower head is ideal tucked into a shade garden or used as a fresh cut flower. Deer- and frost-tolerant, double queen is an evergreen plant that retains its vibrant color all year long. Its leather-like leaves are dark green and shiny. To promote new growth, cut back the Lenten rose after the blooming season. Double queen Lenten rose requires part to full shade and neutral to alkaline soil that is nutrient-rich. Tolerant of summer heat and humidity, double queen is a hardy winter variety. The USDA Hardiness Zones for planting are 4 to 9.

Giant Snowdrop

Giant snowdrop (Galanthus elwesii) is a perennial flower that blooms in winter to signal that spring is on its way. Growing less than 6 inches tall and wide, giant snowdrop has larger flowers than the common snowdrop. White, with a nodding appearance, giant snowdrops are ideal tucked along a front bed or lining a garden walkway because of their low-growinwg habit. Growing in upright clumps, giant snowdrop can be divided after flowering to plant in other areas of the garden. Giant snowdrop requires a fall planting to bloom in winter. They thrive in full and well-drained soil that is moist, and are hardy in USDA Zones 3 to 9.

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