Over the years I’ve learned that some plants in my garden can be cut back hard in autumn. Their stems collapse and they add no colour or structure to the winter border. The best thing to do is cut them back and compost their wilting stems and leaves. But some plants are well worth hanging on to…
The best have sturdy stems and seed heads that stay upright no matter what the weather throws at them. They look beautiful on a frosty morning and even better with a dusting of snow…
What’s more they provide winter shelter and food for the wild creatures in your garden. If you’re really lucky you’ll be rewarded one fine spring day when your plants give up the last of their seeds to a flock of hungry goldfinches.
Here are some of my favourite plants for winter seed heads.
Click on an image to open the gallery and see the plants in more detail.
Some people prefer to see a neat and tidy garden all winter and like to give it a thorough tidy in November. But scientists say that decay is an essential part of the garden for all living things.
My approach is more little and often… I just remove any soft foliage as it begins to rot down over winter so it doesn’t ruin dormant plants underneath.
What’s your approach? I’d love to know what you do with your garden at this time of year. Gillian 🙂