Top ten plants for February gardens

Top ten plants for February gardens
Share the story

It may be cold outside but take heart as spring is just around the corner. There are many plants starting to wake up from their winter dormancy and putting on a great show. So, here are ten top plants that look especially attractive in February…

1. Narcissus (daffodil) ‘February Gold’

The cheerful rich yellow flowers of ‘February Gold’ make it one of the most well-known early-flowering daffodils. They look wonderful growing in grass in natural looking drifts. Achieve this natural looking effect by simply throwing handfuls of bulbs on the area where you’d like them to grow and planting where the bulbs land.

  • Flowers in spring
  • Fully hardy
  • Grows up to 30cm tall
  • Moist, but well-drained or well-drained soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Sheltered or exposed

2. Camellia ‘Cornish Snow’

This compact evergreen shrub has small, scented, white flowers with bright yellow stamens contrasting beautifully with its shiny dark green leaves. Another beautiful thing about the flowers is that the back is slightly tinted with pink. It grows well when planted by a wall where it can be protected from the harshest winter weather.

Just be careful not to plant it in an east facing part of the garden as early morning sunlight can damage flower buds after a frost. If growing in pots, ensure they are watered with rainwater because tap water is too alkaline and may turn the leaves a sickly light green/yellow.

  • Flowers in winter
  • Hardy through most of the UK
  • Grows to 2.5m tall
  • Moist but well-drained or well-drained soil
  • Full shade or partial shade
  • Sheltered

3. Crocus x cultorum (crocus) ‘Jeanne D’Arc’

Crocuses are easy to grow and give a very welcome splash of spring colour in the garden. They look striking when planted in lawns, containers, or flower borders. They also provide a much-needed source of early pollen and nectar for bumblebees as they emerge from hibernation.

This cultivar has large white goblet shaped flowers with purple staining and larger corms than normal which means it will grow well if planted amongst thicker grass. Remember to allow the leaves to completely die down before cutting them off.

  • Flowers in spring
  • Hardy
  • Grows to 10cm tall
  • Moist but well-drained or well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered or exposed

4. Iris reticulata ‘Pauline’

Next is another early spring flowering bulb which is perfect for growing in containers or sunny rockeries. ‘Pauline’ produces delightful scented velvety purple flowers, along with upright narrow leaves. A top dressing of grit on the soil around the plants will help stop the flowers being splashed with soil when it rains. Bulbs can be divided between mid-summer and early autumn.

  • Flowers in spring
  • Fully hardy
  • Grows to 15cm tall
  • Moist but well-drained or well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered or exposed

5. Galanthus nivalis f. pleniflorus (snowdrop) ‘Flore Pleno’

These dainty looking white flowered bulbs are extremely tough and hardy, and can grow in most soil types. They spread easily and are perfect for naturalising. They produce pure white flowers with double the number of petals than the traditional common species, Galanthus nivalis.

  • Flowers in winter
  • Hardy in most places through the UK
  • Grows to 10cm tall
  • Moist but well-drained or well-drained soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Sheltered or exposed

6. Daphne mezereum (mezereon)

The highly scented purple-pink flowers are the perfect tonic for curing the winter blues. It can be grown in full sun as long as the soil remains moist so that its roots never dry out. Cut a branch when in full flower to bring into the house where it should fill a warm room with its delightful scent.

  • Flowers in spring
  • Fully hardy
  • Grows up to 1.5m tall
  • Moist but well-drained or well-drained soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Sheltered

7. Erysimum (perennial wallflower) ‘Winter Joy

The flowers on this perennial wallflower are guaranteed to brighten the dullest winter day with the slight fragrance and purple glow. Trimming the plant lightly after it finishes flowering will help keep it looking neat.

  • Flowers in spring
  • Hardy through most of the UK
  • Grows up to 50cm tall
  • Well-drained soil
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered or exposed

8. Acer davidii (snake bark maple) ‘Viper’

The stunning silver, grey, and white markings on the bark of this multi-stemmed slow growing tree look like snakeskin. The deep red tipped branches look particularly striking during the winter months, especially when covered with a light frosting. The leaves put on a wonderful autumn display as they change colour to a bright red. It’s easy to grow and looks great all year round, as well as tolerating most soil types.

  • Interesting foliage and flowers in summer
  • Hardy
  • Grows up to 6m tall
  • Moist but well-drained or well-drained soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Exposed

9. Clematis urophylla (clematis) ‘Winter Beauty’

This evergreen winter flowering variety has pretty wax-like nodding creamy, bell-shaped flowers. Its medium growth makes it ideal for a smaller or medium sized gardens and looks wonderful growing over an arch or pergola. It will grow particularly well in a warm, sheltered spot.

  • Flowers in winter
  • Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK
  • Grows up to 3m tall
  • Moist but well-drained soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Sheltered

10. Hamamelis x intermedia (witch hazel) ‘Strawberries and Cream’

This small tree produces very pretty, yellow-tipped flowers, which turn a pink-red at the base. It grows particularly well in slightly acidic soil as long as the soil is free draining. It will benefit from a mulch of well-rotted manure or peat-free compost placed around its base in early spring.

  • Flowers in winter
  • Hardy
  • Grows to 2.5m tall
  • Well-drained, acidic sandy or light soil
  • Full sun or partial shade
  • Sheltered

Though it’s the shortest month of the year, there are still plenty of days to fill with bright blooms and fantastic foliage for interest in the garden. These top ten plants for February will be sure to help you take the step closer to spring.

Find out more about adding texture to your garden:

Or check out my Pinterest board for more ideas:


Share the story

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

Exit mobile version