Winter Landscapes

  • 01 of 27

    Ornamental Grass Picture

    Ornamental grass is most striking in the winter landscape.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Ornamental grass is most striking in the winter landscape. David Beaulieu

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes for Landscaping Inspiration

    Not only are pictures of winter landscapes beautiful to behold in their own right, but they can also furnish inspiration as you're planning your landscaping. It's especially easy for those landscaping in the country to take their cue from Mother Nature, who finds a way to dazzle our senses even during the bleakest of months in the North. But city folk, too, can gain some ideas from these pictures of winter landscapes: for instance,...MORE it doesn't take much room to grow ornamental grass, which shines most brightly when surrounded by snow. Browse the clickable photos below for some ideas.

    Ornamental grasses are wonderful additions to a yard any time of year....

    But ornamental grasses shine most brightly in the winter landscape, after the foliage of many other plants has cruelly deserted us.

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  • 02 of 27

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes: Andromeda

    Picture of pieris shrub in the winter snow.
    Pieris Shrub in With Snow Picture of pieris shrub in the winter snow. David Beaulieu

    This Pieris shrub (or "Andromeda") would provide nice winter color, all by itself....

    But I especially like it with a backdrop of snow. If you wish to learn more about this plant, consult my fuller treatment of Andromeda.

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  • 03 of 27

    Spruce Trees Dusted With Snow

    Picture of spruce windbreak dusted with winter snow.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of spruce windbreak dusted with winter snow. David Beaulieu

    These blue spruce trees form an effective windbreak....

    But they add visual interest to the winter landscape, too, especially when snow clings to their branches.

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  • 04 of 27

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes: Pond Scene

    Picture of a waterwheel in winter.
    Winter Scene With Waterwheel Picture of a waterwheel in winter. David Beaulieu

    This winter scene has much to recommend it, boasting an attractive pond, fence and planting of trees and shrubs....

    But the clincher is the waterwheel!

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  • 05 of 27

    Weeping Elm Provides Structure

    Picture of a weeping elm tree in winter.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of a weeping elm tree in winter. David Beaulieu

    This weeping elm may be at its most beautiful in the winter landscape....

    After it has lost its leaves, the weeping elm gives us a better look at its exquisite branching pattern. In the winter landscape, especially, such "structural elements" are greatly appreciated.

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  • 06 of 27

    Beech Trees in a Snow-Covered Forest

    Picture of beech trees in the winter woods.
    Long-Lasting Leaves Make Fagus Grandifolia a Valued Tree in Winter Picture of beech trees in the winter woods. David Beaulieu

    American beech trees (Fagus grandifolia) hold onto their foliage longer than do most deciduous trees....

    This feature is especially welcome in winter, as the winter landscape scene in this image attests to.

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  • 07 of 27

    "Bend Like a Reed in the Wind"

    Picture of common reeds in winter pond.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of common reeds in winter pond. David Beaulieu

    You've probably heard the dictum, "bend like a reed in the wind"....

    The common reeds (Phragmites) in this winter landscape have taken it literally! But Phragmites is invasive; as a substitute, consider feather reed grass (Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Stricta').

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  • 08 of 27

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes

    Picture of mailbox planting in winter.
    Eye-Catching Mailbox Planting Picture of mailbox planting in winter. David Beaulieu

    This mailbox planting has a little bit of everything....

    Most notably, evergreen shrubs with different forms, colors and textures. This is what you must rely on if you want winter interest around a mailbox in the North.

    During the summer, of course, you have more options at your disposal. Looking for ideas for flowers to use in this area of your landscaping? See what I have to say in my article on mailbox plantings.

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  • 09 of 27

    Winter Landscape Scene With Ornamental Grasses

    Ornamental grasses inject much-needed visual interest into the winter landscape.
    Foreground for a Beautiful Panorama Ornamental grasses inject much-needed visual interest into the winter landscape. David Beaulieu

    This panorama offers a beautiful winter landscape scene for as far as the eye can see....

    But without the foliage of the ornamental grasses, the foreground would be lacking something.

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  • 10 of 27

    Wishing Well in Winter

    Picture of a wishing well in the winter landscape.
    Whimsical Winter Hardscape Picture of a wishing well in the winter landscape. David Beaulieu

    Hardscape features, such as wishing wells, are important to a landscape design throughout the year....

    But they are particularly helpful to the winter landscape, when vegetation is sparse.

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  • 11 of 27

    Eastern Red Cedar in Winter Sand Dunes

    Picture of a lonely eastern red cedar (juniper) tree in the sand dunes during winter.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of a lonely eastern red cedar (juniper) tree in the sand dunes during winter. David Beaulieu

    A lonely sentinel in the winter sand dunes, this little tree goes by the somewhat misleading common name of "eastern red cedar"....

    But this tree is actually not a cedar at all, but a juniper. This fact makes it a relative of Chinese juniper shrubs, for example. The botanical name for eastern red cedar is Juniperus virginiana. Our Forestry Expert, Steve Nix refers to it as "a small to medium tree that rarely exceeds 50 feet in height." It is a drought-tolerant tree and can be grown in plan...MOREting zones 2-9, making it very cold-hardy. Being an evergreen, it has inherent screening capabilities in the landscape. Its blue "berries" (which are actually classified as cones) are a nice bonus, not only because they are attractive, but also because the wild birds eat them.

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  • 12 of 27

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes: Dried Ornamental Grass

    Picture of ornamental grass in winter.
    Great Idea for a Natural Privacy Fence Picture of ornamental grass in winter. David Beaulieu

    This planting of ornamental grass effectively functions as a natural privacy "fence"....

    More importantly, it greatly enhances this country home's winter landscape.

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  • 13 of 27

    Photo of Cattails in Ice

    Picture of cattails in ice.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of cattails in ice. David Beaulieu

    If you have a swamp on your land, you may feel cursed for most of the year....

    But the visual interest offered the winter landscape by swamp-dwellers such as cattails may just be consolation enough!

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  • 14 of 27

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes

    Picture of winter firewood stack.
    Stack of Winter Firewood Picture of winter firewood stack. David Beaulieu

    What elements in a yard catch our eye can, at times, be surprising....

    In a properly planned yard, something as simple as a stack of firewood can be highly decorative.

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  • 15 of 27

    The Majesty of Oaks

    Picture of majestic oak tree on farm in winter.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of majestic oak tree on farm in winter. David Beaulieu

    There's no need to get closer to the big tree shown in this photo to name it. Even at a distance, their branching pattern immediately gives oak trees away....

    What caps off this winter landscape scene, enjoyed from atop a snowy hillock, is the majestic oak tree, towering above its woody underlings.

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  • 16 of 27

    Is Phragmites Australis Edible?

    Picture of common reeds in winter.
    Invasive Reed Pretty in Windswept Winter Landscape Scene Picture of common reeds near a winter pond and winding road. David Beaulieu

    This windswept winter landscape is too rough for anything but scrub and common reeds (Phragmites australis), those invasive plants discussed in an earlier photo....

    Phragmites australis plants are omnipresent in marshy coastal areas of the northeastern United States. As much as they add to the winter scenery in a landscape, their invasiveness makes them "bad." But other than visual appeal, do they have anything good to offer, such as being edible?

    The fact is, people in other parts of the world...MORE have found numerous uses for Phragmites australis. As for their being edible, let me state immediately that:

    1. I, myself have never knowingly ingested any part of the plant
    2. Nor am I an expert in wild foods or in toxicology; always consult an expert before ingesting anything with which you are not intimately familiar

    Having said that, the Plants for a Future website does discuss the use of different parts of Phragmites australis as a food source. They list the edible portions of the plant as being:

    1. leaves
    2. root
    3. seed
    4. stem

    The site alludes to the use of Phragmites australis as a food source in Russia and in Japan.

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  • 17 of 27

    Rounded Pergola

    Picture of rounded pergola in winter, functioning as a rose trellis.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of rounded pergola in winter. David Beaulieu

    This rounded pergola serves as a rose trellis in the summer landscape....

    But in the winter landscape, this striking structure can be appreciated in its own right.

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  • 18 of 27

    Picture of Stone Wall in Winter

    Picture of stone wall with winter snow.
    Snow Scene in a Forested Landscape Picture of stone wall with winter snow. David Beaulieu

    Stone walls are attractive at any time of year....

    But a stone wall hidden in the shade of the forest cover in summer comes into its own in the winter landscape, after the leaves have fallen. By the way, you can even build a stone wall in winter -- if you're a hardy soul.

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  • 19 of 27

    Windswept Ornamental Grass

    Picture of ornamental grass blowing in the winter wind.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of ornamental grass blowing in the winter wind. David Beaulieu

    In choosing plants for your yard, take into account the "windswept" factor....

    That is, one should appreciate the interaction the wind has with some plants. In the picture above, it's visual: I admire a winter landscape featuring windswept grasses. Use tall grasses such as maiden grass to achieve this look. In other cases, the wind may "play" a plant as if it were a musical instrument (think of the wind whistling through oak leaves). On other plants, the wind has little impact.

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  • 20 of 27

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes

    Picture showing juniper groundcover covered in snow.
    When Groundcovers Become "Covered" Picture showing banking of juniper groundcover covered in snow. David Beaulieu

    "Groundcovers" do what their name suggests: they cover up a patch of ground. They can thus be used to suppress weeds and, on hills, prevent soil erosion....

    In the picture above, the slope in front of the house is planted with a juniper groundcover. But the groundcover itself is covered with a layer of winter snow, providing this winter landscape design with some interesting texture.

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  • 21 of 27

    Sand Dunes in Winter

    Picture of sand dunes in winter.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of sand dunes in winter. David Beaulieu

    Unlike many folks, I enjoy the beach year-round, not just in summer....

    And one reason for this is visual: Northern beaches undergo seasonal changes, and I don't want to miss any of them! Sand dunes always promise some interesting winter landscape scenes. What the sand dunes lack during the cold-weather months in the way of lush foliage they more than make up for with an artistic mix of colors and textures.

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  • 22 of 27

    Picture of Yew Hedge

    Picture of yew hedge covered in winter snow.
    Yews at Yule Time: Traditional Holiday Favorite Picture of yew hedge covered in winter snow. David Beaulieu

    This dense yew hedge holds the winter snow well....

    It looks like a big cake that's been frosted for celebrations at Yule time!

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  • 23 of 27

    Cornfield in Winter

    Picture of a cornfield in winter.
    Pictures of Winter Landscapes Picture of a cornfield in winter. David Beaulieu

    Folks in farming country may take winter landscape scenes such as this for granted....

    But a cornfield in winter has a certain beauty to it, long after the stalks have become lifeless.

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  • 24 of 27

    Pictures of Winter Landscapes

    Picture of farm in valley during winter.
    Farm Nestled in a Valley, in Winter Picture of farm in valley during winter. David Beaulieu

    I like the way this farm, viewed from a snow-covered hillside, is nestled in the valley....

    A wooded area serves as a backdrop, along with a rolling pasture that's nicely bounded by a stone wall and a tree-lined country road. The trees' branching patterns can be most easily appreciated in winter, when their leaves have fallen.

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  • 25 of 27

    Picture of Ice on Branches

    Picture of ice on branches after ice storm.
    Winter Scenery Photo After an Ice Storm Picture of ice on branches after a winter ice storm. David Beaulieu

    I know, ice storms can wreak havoc on human communities, causing us to lose electrical power or to lose control of our vehicles....

    But winter landscapes are perhaps at their most gorgeous just after ice storms. In this photo, the ice coats otherwise bare tree branches and the bare bittersweet vine branches growing along a chain-link fence, creating wonderful winter scenery. The lawn's icy glitter, alone is worthy of a fairy scene.

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  • 26 of 27

    Picture of Leaf Coated in Ice

    Ice pictures dazzle us. This ice picture shows an oak leaf encased in it.
    Oak Leaf "Shellacked" by Old Man Winter Picture: oak leaf encased in ice after a winter storm. David Beaulieu

    The prior picture showed a landscape covered in ice....

    The picture above illustrates how attractive a single component of a landscape can be, following an ice storm, if you take the time to appreciate "small things." No shellac finish can encase an oak tree leaf more beautifully than can ice (albeit for a limited time).

    Had enough of winter landscapes? Perhaps you're ready to turn the page and "think spring?" If so, have a look at my article on spring flowers and find out about some...MORE of the landscape's earliest bloomers in the North. Or if you can't get enough of winter landscapes, continue on to the next picture, which shows a scene worthy of a calendar.

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  • 27 of 27

    Red Barn

    Red barn.
    New England Winter Landscape Red barn. David Beaulieu

    Red barns are New England classics....

    They never look better than in a snow-covered landscape. I photographed this quaint scene in February, in the midst of a winter season during which Old Man Winter dumped on us here in Western Massachusetts with alarming frequency. It's a splendid sight, yes, but I wouldn't want to have to shovel here to clear the driveway!