Garden Photo of the Day

Unexpected Winter Blooms

Bonus of a mild winter

close up of purple Cool Wave pansies

Joseph here, in northern Indiana, where normally December and January is an indoor-only gardening season, with lots of snow, frigid temperatures, and ground frozen solid.

Not this winter, though. We’ve been having absurdly warm temperatures, and bizarrely when everything would normally be deeply dormant, I still have things flowering!

Here’s what is showing off in my garden… do you have any winter bloomers going strong at home?

close up of yellow and purple pansies in a window box

Most of what I have flowering are pansies (Viola x wittrockiana, cool season annual). I started these from seed in the fall, and didn’t really expect them to survive my winter in my window boxes. Well… they are surviving for sure!

close up of Cool Wave pansies

This is one of the ‘Cool Wave’ series, pansies that make long, trailing stems. They look so good spilling out of my window boxes.

close up of deep purple pansy flower

I also grew a bunch of the variety ‘Flirty Skirts’ which have these wonderfully ruffled blooms.

close up of Flirty Skirts pansies

Some are more ruffled than others, but they’re all beautiful.

close up of bright yellow pansies

This bright yellow is a nice bit of sunshine in our typically cloudy winter weather.

close up of purple Cool Wave pansies

And this Cool Wave variety has been so nice – lots of flowers, with a great pattern.

close up of single snodrop growing out of fallen leaves

I also have snowdrops blooming! This is the species Galanthus elwesii (Zone 4 – 7) which I got because it is a little larger than the typical Galanthus nivalis (Zone 3 – 7). Last year they all bloomed in the spring, but with the warmer weather, I have a handful blooming now, and some that even started back in November.

close up of snowdrops in bloom

I just planted these a couple year ago. I can’t wait for them to multiply into nice clumps.

close up of deep purple primroses

Finally, I have primroses (Primula hybrid, Zone 3 – 8) blooming! These have always started early, but never THIS early. They’re a long way for full bloom, but it is great to see some color this time of year.


Have a garden you’d like to share?

Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!

To submit, send 5-10 photos to [email protected] along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.

Have a mobile phone? Tag your photos on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with #FineGardening!

Do you receive the GPOD by email yet? Sign up here.

View Comments


  1. User avater
    musabasjoosue 01/05/2024

    I'm in CT and it's been unusually warm as well, similar to last year. We're getting some plowable snow overnight on Saturday so maybe the trend will become more seasonable. Color in the garden in January is definitely an upside!

  2. User avater
    simplesue 01/05/2024

    I'm in Pittsburgh and it's around 29 degrees this morning. Those winter blooms are amazing- such a surprise, I always heard Pansies like cool weather. Your Pansy "‘Flirty Skirts’" are really gorgeous!

  3. user-7392754 01/05/2024

    How to have winter blooms!!! They look very happy!

  4. moyra_b 01/05/2024


  5. btucker9675 01/05/2024

    It's always so nice to be greeted by the cheerful faces of pansies!!

  6. daisy8 01/05/2024

    Wow! I love your pansies. Did you direct sow the seeds into your window box? The trailing stems of the “Cool Wave” series look great. I’ll have to try pansies in my window box next fall. I’m in Indiana too (south central) and so many of my bulbs are already up (some alliums are a foot tall right now), but none of my bulbs are blooming like yours. Thanks for the inspiration.

Log in or create an account to post a comment.

Related Articles

The Latest