Spring and summer are most associated with blooming flowers and gardening, but just because the weather is colder and the days are shorter doesn’t mean you have to forgo flowers entirely. This is especially true in Atlanta’s milder winter weather. When located in the USDA’s hardiness zone 7, you can easily grow a wide variety of plants that’ll stay safe year-round, including during the winter. Our Atlanta florists at Carithers Flowers especially love brightening the darkest season of the year with the following winter-ready plants.
Winter White Poinsettia
Poinsettia plants are a popular winter favorite thanks to their brightly colored leaves, which are often mistaken for the plant’s flowers. A poinsettia’s flowers are actually indistinct small, yellow blooms and the colorful leaves we all love are called bracts. Poinsettia leaves transform from green to brilliant colors after the plant’s exposed to about 12 to 14 hours of darkness each day.
The most popular poinsettia bract colors are, of course, red and white for celebrating winter and seasonal holidays, but they’re also available in varieties of yellow, orange, pink, and purple! We especially love white poinsettias, as they’ll last throughout winter and look as pretty as freshly fallen snow.
To care for your poinsettia plant, provide full sun and keep its soil moist without letting it stand in water.
The kalanchoe is a cousin of the jade plant. Since they’re succulents, they thrive in the less humid conditions found inside homes during winter. Kalanchoe bloom in response to the amount of sunlight they receive each day, which means they can be made to bloom by creating synthetic daylight conditions, at any time of the year, including winter. After six weeks of 12 to 14 hours of darkness, clusters of vibrantly colored flowers burst from kalanchoe plants in a variety of hues including pink, yellow, orange, red, and white.
A succulent, kalanchoe are originally desert plants. To care for your kalanchoe, keep it above 50-degrees F, in a south-facing window. Plant it with well-draining soil and be careful not to water it too often.
Flowering Azalea Garden
Azaleas bloom in a whole rainbow of colors that will brighten up the winter. Their lush, delicate flowers can be coaxed out during the winter months, which makes them a favorite for florists. They do well indoors in planter gardens, but can also be safely added to an outdoor garden in hardiness zones between 6 and 9.
Azaleas prefer partial shade and won’t tolerate too much water. When replanting bulbs from a florist, it’s best to put your azaleas in the ground in late spring or early fall. If you transplant an azalea to the outdoors, be sure to place it a location with acidic soil to ensure beautiful blooms in either the spring or fall, depending on the variety of the azalea plant.
4. Christmas Cactus
These beautiful cacti gained their name because they bloom around Christmas time. Other varieties also bloom at Thanksgiving and Easter. We love Christmas cacti for their stunning appearance which features deep green, segmented leaves and tubular blooms in a variety of pinks, reds, oranges, and whites.
Although the Christmas cactus is a cactus, it requires slightly different care from other plants of this genus. The Christmas cactus is actually native to more humid regions of Brazil and grows on trees, like bromeliads or orchids. While they need well-draining soil, a Christmas cactus doesn’t tolerate drought as well as cacti of the desert. So, you’ll need to water them more often than regular cacti and even succulents. Provide bright, indirect sunlight and soak your plant’s soil when the top inch becomes dry.
Atlanta Flowering Orchid Gardens
There are an estimated 30,000 different species of orchids blooming around the world, and many of these bloom in winter. Their sheer variety and delicate beauty make orchids one of our favorite winter plants. They’re available in a variety of colors and various shapes and sizes. Unlike some plants, which respond to daylight, orchids are sensitive to temperature. They bloom in response to temperature changes. Often a day to night shift between 10 or even 20 degrees will coax an orchid into bloom.
In the wild, orchids tend to grow in humid locations with good drainage, often sprouting from the bark on the side of trees in the rainforest. As a result, they like filtered sunlight and frequent watering through well-draining, porous potting mixture.
Green Plants Love Winter, Too!
In addition to plants that bloom in the winter, there are also plenty of green plants that look simply lovely and vibrant during the winter months. Some of our favorites include a variety of evergreens and pothos plants. When growing an indoor garden, you can accommodate just about any type of plant throughout the year by creating an environment in which it will thrive!
For more information about our favorite winter plants or how to brighten your home during the winter with bright winter blooms, we welcome you to contact our florists at Carithers Flowers for personalized assistance and recommendations.