Podcast: Let's Argue About Plants

Episode 151: Underappreciated Plants for Winter Interest

During the winter months many plants reveal subtle patterns, fine details, and a new range of colors that help us to see familiar beds and borders with fresh eyes. This is an excellent time to get outside, evaluate your garden’s bones, and make some plans for spring planting. In this episode, Danielle, Carol, and their guest explore some of the plants that fly a bit under the radar in winter but certainly deserve more attention. Do you have any of these underappreciated wonders in your landscape? If not, you may want to start digging holes as soon as the ground thaws to ensure that some of these unsung heroes get some well-deserved garden real estate. Will any of these winter beauties make it onto your wish list this year?

Guest: Jay Sifford is the owner and principal designer at Jay Sifford Garden Design in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Danielle’s Plants

Spotted wintergreenSpotted wintergreen (Chimaphila maculata, Zones 4–8)


Peppermint Patty bergenia‘Peppermint Patty’ bergenia (Bergenia ‘Peppermint Patty’, Zones 4–8)


MoosewoodMoosewood (Acer pensylvanicum, Zones 3–7)


ReJoyce drooping laure
Photo: Plants Nouveau

‘ReJoyce’ drooping laurel (Leucothoe axillaris ‘ReJoyce’, Zones 6–9)


Carol’s Plants

Golden Duke Eastern hemlock
Photo: courtesy of Cherry Ong

Golden Duke eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis ‘Monjers’, Zones 4–8)


American hornbeam in winter
American hornbeam, winter foliage

American hornbeam (Carpinus caroliniana, Zones 3b–9)


Little Heath pieris‘Little Heath’ pieris (Pieris japonica ‘Little Heath’, Zones 5–9)


St Marys Broom blue spruce‘St. Mary’s Broom’ blue spruce (Picea pungens ‘St. Mary’s Broom’, Zones 2–7)


Expert’s Plants

American witch hazel
Photo: millettephotomedia.com

American witch hazel (Hamamelis virginiana, Zones 3–8)


Shades of Pink laurustinus
Photo: Jay Sifford

‘Shades of Pink’ laurustinus (Viburnum tinus ‘Shades of Pink’, Zones 7b–10)


blue conifer with fountain grass in winter
‘Blue Cloak’ concolor fir with ‘Karley Rose’ fountain grass. Photo: Jay Sifford

Blue conifers with assorted ornamental grasses


Louie white pine
Photo: Jay Sifford

‘Louie’ white pine (Pinus strobus ‘Louie’, Zones 4–9)


Discover even more great plants with winter interest:

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