This time of year, numerous of us have a inclination to keep cooped up within and not discover mother nature. The temperatures are chilly, the skies are gloomy, and the back garden is taking a relaxation.

Having said that, if you can bring oneself to enterprise into the garden, Mother Mother nature has a ton to give. You may possibly be amazed at the magnificence you occur across. Take a appear at a public yard or even a friend’s for inspiration for your personal.

A lot of crops give wintertime curiosity. Winterberry holly (Ilex verticillata) shows off clusters of cheerful pink berries, pink-twig dogwood (Cornus sericea, C. sanguinea and C. alba) reveals bright crimson stems, and Florida Sunshine anise (Illicum parvaflorum) displays lively chartreuse foliage. These vegetation develop into the heart of consideration in the winter season backyard garden.

One particular particular illustration I have developed fond of is Cotoneaster lacteus (syn. Cotoneaster parneyi), generally identified as parney cotoneaster. The genus Cotoneaster incorporates at minimum 70 species, but regretably their use is restricted in significantly of the United States thanks to many elements.

As horticulture pro Dr. Michael Dirr notes, most species are prone to excessive warmth, significant moist soils, lace bug, mites and fireblight, which lead to their rather quick life in the landscape. With that getting reported, C. lacteus is definitely the exception to the rule — it is nearly pest-free.

Parney cotoneaster was introduced to the U.S. in 1930 from western China. Escalating to concerning 6 feet tall and 8 feet extensive in 10 many years, its habit is to some degree upright and spreading, with swish arching branches. This evergreen produces 2- to 3-inch clusters of compact white bouquets in mid May perhaps to early June. The flowers give way to beautiful shiny pink berries that keep on being on the plant as a result of winter season, creating this cotoneaster a showstopper. The dim inexperienced, deer-resistant foliage presents the great backdrop and distinction to the berries. This cotoneaster grows properly in total sunshine to element shade and, whilst it is quite drought-tolerant, it performs ideal in moist, very well-drained soils.

A specimen at the College of Tennessee Gardens in Jackson thrives superbly with nearly no treatment along the parking good deal control near the gazebo. C. lacteus functions properly in groupings or as a mass planting and is a amazing addition to any combined shrub border the place added wintertime curiosity is preferred.

For a plant that is resistant to drought, ailments and insects as properly as incredibly lower upkeep, tolerant of a wide range of rising circumstances and intriguing in winter, parney cotoneaster is shockingly underused.

Visitors can see parney cotoneaster at its peak, when quite a few plants are taking a rest, at the UT Gardens in Jackson and Knoxville. Take into consideration including this cotoneaster and other wintertime beauties to your individual yard landscape.

Richard Gibson is assistant horticulturist with the UT Gardens in Jackson, one particular of 3 collections specified as the formal botanical backyard garden for the state of Tennessee (others are in Knoxville and Crossville). The gardens are open throughout all seasons and absolutely free to the community. For more information, go to

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