Gardening: What to plant for autumn-winter season pot shows – Mark Lane’s column

At this time of the 12 months, we want some color, scent, texture and kind to continue to keep our temper and senses uplifted. There may possibly be gray skies outside the house, dim mornings and evenings, but we can carry plants close to the residence, the front door, the patio doors or outdoors a window in pots, containers, window bins and hanging baskets.

By opting for a assortment of plants and underplanting with spring and summertime bulbs you can have long term pot displays for 12 months of the calendar year.

Based on the amount of sunlight the location will get, will dictate the decision of vegetation.

In other phrases, if you have a sunny place then go for sunshine-loving crops.

For a shadier spot believe woodland-form planting and shade-loving vegetation.

This may well seem hard, specifically if new to gardening, but a speedy web search, looking through the plant label in the backyard centre or asking a member of team will drop mild on a plant’s growing needs.

The first detail to try to remember is that rising in pots and containers of all shapes and dimensions suggests that you are developing a expanding setting.

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You can insert ericaceous soil if you want to develop acid-loving crops such as Acer, Azalea, Rhododendron, Hydrangea and Narcissus, or standard peat-no cost compost or home made compost for alkaline and neutral-loving crops, this sort of as Marjoram, Polemonium, Lavandula or Lonicera.

Ensure your pots and containers have drainage holes and evenly include these with ‘crocks’, or broken terracotta pots, even recycle unused, damaged-up polystyrene or damaged plastic pots.

These will cease the soil blocking the holes when you drinking water the crops.

For a window box increase a mix of evergreen ferns like Blechnum spicant (deer fern) and Asplenium scolopendrium (hart’s tongue fern) for composition alongside with cyclamen and viola.

Try out Viola cornuta ‘Antique Shades’ F1 with purple, coppery orange petals with darkish veins, along with Viola cornuta ‘Tiger Eye Red’ with amber petals with a maroon reverse and dark maroon veins.

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Cyclamen coum has rounded, coronary heart-shaped leaves with silver markings and bouquets in magenta, pink or white and bloom from December to March.

Underplant with Narcissus ‘Tête-à-tête’ (dwarf daffodil), Tulipa ‘Greigii Mix’ and Iris reticulata ‘Purple Hill’ for shots of color in the spring.

Outside the front door plant, the evergreen Sarcococca confusa in the centre with a delightful, sweet scent or ‘The Looking Glass’ plant, Coprosma repens ‘Pacific Night’ with shiny, deep burgundy, pretty much black, leaves or the deep, purple-leafed Chinese Witch Hazel, Loropetalum ‘Black Pearl’ with aromatic pink tassle-like flowers. (This will will need some security with horticultural fleece in critical winters.)

Combine in the black ornamental grass Ophiopogon planiscapus ‘Nigrescens’, some edible and ornamental veggies like Mustard ‘Red Frills’, Mustard Spinach (Komatsuna) and Choy Sum together with edible flowers these types of as the preferred Viola ‘Cool Pink’ blend, the multi-layered Pansy ‘Frizzle ‘Sizzle’ mix and Primrose ‘Everlast’.

Each time you go outdoors, arrive house or open up the door to website visitors you’re welcomed with a colourful and scented display screen for months on conclude.

Not anyone has the area for pots and containers, so hanging baskets are a great way to introduce some winter delight.

Go for vibrant colours, attractive foliage and pleasant textures.

Violas and pansies are at the top of the checklist, but heucheras, like Heuchera x ‘Autumn Leaves’, can increase texture and foliage, as can decorative cabbages – some, this sort of as Brassica ‘Osaka Pink’ will steadily improve color.

The winter-flowering heather, Erica carnea, are difficult and hardy, as are Cyclamen coum.

Alternatively, go for a modern twist and plant up a ball of hanging baskets with the completely winter season frost hardy houseleek or Sempervivum.

These are evergreen and come in a range of colors.

Combine in some trailing ivy and you are going to have a basket or ball that is the envy of your neighbours.

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