It’s much easier to think about winter feasts or sitting around the fireplace holding a mug of hot chocolate with a couple of half-submerged marshmallows.
But I’ve noticed something happening out on the streets in Portland, Oregon and in many other places — city crews are outside planting new flowers, sprucing up the street’s winter curb appeal.
Home sellers can take a hint from this: If colorful pansies and other plants can thrive all winter-long in street dividers and pots around town, why can’t we do the same thing in our own front and back yards?
Here are a few quick, easy ways to boost your home’s winter curb appeal:
First off, this can actually be a good time to shop for plants. Many nurseries and stores are selling their inventory for up to 75% off, because people aren’t doing much gardening right now and stores don’t want to deal with this inventory either. This makes it a good time to replace any plants that sizzled and died in the summer with hardy perennials that will make it through the winter.
This can also be a good time to go pot shopping and see what kind of discounts you can get. There’s a good chance those fenced-in pot and sculpture places have a lot of inventory but not too many takers. Find a few colorful pots of varying heights and load them up with bright pansies and green plants which will perk up your surroundings all winter-long. You can place these along your walkway as well as throughout your garden.
Next, think about adding a blanket of winter mulch to add color and consistency to your garden, as well as to protect your plants from harsh conditions. The best way to buy this mulch is to have it delivered by truck instead of buying it by the bag. By doing so, you can get as much as five times as much mulch for your money.
Take a look around your house for broken items that can be given new life in your garden. Cracked or chipped flower pots can be partially buried, or you can fill them with ground cover plants that will artfully flow over the pot’s broken parts. Even broken garden tools with long handles, such as rakes, hoes and shovels can be used as posts for training vines. These unfortunate items can give your garden character and add varied elevations to your landscaping.
Now here’s a few more easy enhancements: Put an attractive wreath on your front door, keep your front entryway clean and swept, and move a few lamps (inside your house) close to the windows. For added ambiance, use warm hued or pinkish lightbulbs to give your home a welcoming glow.
Make sure your home’s sales material includes photos of your home in all seasons. Take pictures of your attractive winter garden and your home’s windows glowing in the dim evening light. Show these photos alongside shots of your home in the height of spring and summer.
Now you’re ready for that rewarding cup of hot chocolate, knowing if a house hunter drives by this winter — they’ll see an unexpected winter garden worth stopping for.