Winter Container Care – Learn About Winter Gardening In Pots

Winter and spring pansies and evergreen shrub in container
Image by vau902

By Liz Baessler

Container winter gardens are a fantastic way to brighten up an otherwise bleak space. Especially in the dead of winter, even a little bit of color can do wonders for your state of mind and remind you that spring isn’t too far away. Keep reading for winter container garden ideas.

Winter Container Care

How do you go about container gardening in winter? It’s true, you won’t be able to grow tomatoes on your doorstep in January. But with a little knowledge of the plants you’re working with and a lot of ingenuity, you can have beautiful container winter gardens all around your house.


The first thing to be aware of is the USDA hardiness zone you live in. Plants in containers are a lot more susceptible to cold than plants in the ground, so when container gardening in winter you should, as a rule, stick to plants that are hardy to at least two zones colder than your own.

If you live in zone 7, plant only things that are hardy to zone 5. This isn’t a hard and fast rule, and some plants, trees in particular, can survive better in the cold. It’s all a matter of how much you want to risk it.

When picking a container, avoid terra cotta, which can crack with multiple freezes and thaws.

Winter Gardening in Pots

Winter gardening in pots doesn’t have to involve actively growing plants, either. Evergreen boughs, berries, and pinecones are all excellent additions to container winter gardens. Spray them with an anti-desiccant to keep them looking fresh.

Stick your cuttings into florist foam in an attractive container to achieve the look of an actively growing arrangement, or intersperse living with cut plants to expand on your color and height options. Opt for tall, striking shapes that will slough off and stand out against the snow.

Print This Article
This article was last updated on
Did you find this helpful?
Share it with your friends!

Additional Help & Information

Didn't find the answer to your question? Ask one of our friendly gardening experts.

Do you know anything about gardening? Help answer someone's gardening question.

Read more articles about Container Gardens.

Search for more information

Use the search box below to find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: