A type of holly, this variety loses its leaves in autumn, but breathtaking red berries remain throughout midwinter. The attention-getting display brings a huge splash of color across any landscape, especially in northern regions where the season’s color choices range from white to brown to more white.
2. Flowering Quince
One of the first to bloom in that wedge of time between late winter and early spring, this shrub provides pigment when most other plants are still dormant. In southern zones, you’ll see flowers as early as January, and those in the north will spot them in late February to early March.
Bonus: The colder the winter, the more abundant the flowers will be on the shrub.
3. Japanese Camellia
Affectionately known as “the rose of winter,” this camellia variety grows wild in many parts of Asia and boasts a wide range of colorful shades from the palest pinks to the deepest reds. They’re also revered for their exceptionally long blooming season. Some hybrids that include Japanese camellia can bloom from November to April, even in northern climates.
As with any gardening efforts, it’s best to swing by a local nursery and chat with the experts there about what works well in your specific geographic area, since soil conditions affect plant hardiness. Pick up some care tips, especially about potential pruning in the spring, and you’ll have a gasp-worthy garden, no matter how ferocious Old Man Winter might get.