Wakehurst Place, Sussex
At this time of year it's often easy to think of the garden as being rather bare of colour, with interest focussed on the shape and form of evergreen shrubs and any texture provided by bare branches and twisted bark. However, all is not lost. With some careful planning your garden can be colourful too and can become a welcome haven in the short January days.
To see some winter colour for yourself take a visit to Wakehurst Place in Sussex, where some wonderful winter planting combinations can be found, as well as deliciously scented shrubs that are well placed to remind you of the ability of a garden to touch all of your senses.
Daphne bholua 'Jacqueline Postill' AGM
Two planting combinations in particular caught my eye when I visited today: firstly Daphne bholua 'Jacqueline Postill' AGM - a highly scented evergreen shrub which is covered in star-like ice-pink flowers - shown off against the contrasting deep purple foliage of an adjacent Pittosporum, and secondly, in a contemporary planting style, Cornus alba 'Kesselringii' underplanted with a carpet of Erica x darleyensis 'White Perfection' AGM, the dark red bark of the deciduous dogwood contrasted beautifully against the soft white mounds of the low-growing evergreen shrub beneath. By repeated planting of each of the shrubs, the two borders were able to provide simple, yet very effective splashes of colour, texture and, in the case of Daphne bhoula, scent on an overcast and chilly afternoon.
Cornus alba 'Kesselringii'
Erica x darleyensis 'White Perfection' AGM
Wakehurst Place, Tuesday, 8th January 2013