Trailing Plants to Grow in Winter

This winter, keep some color in your garden — or on your windowsill, if you live where the winters are harsh — with pretty trailing plants.

September 04, 2019

Photo By: Proven Winners

Photo By: Monrovia

Photo By: Monrovia

Photo By: W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

Photo By: W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

Photo By: Proven Winners

Photo By: Proven Winners

Photo By: Proven Winners

Photo By: Proven Winners

Photo By: Monrovia

Photo By: W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

Photo By: W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

Photo By: Proven Winners

Anytime Viola 'Sugarplum'

Also known as a pansiola, Anytime Viola 'Sugarplum' is a charmer. The trailing plants offer winter color in USDA hardiness Zones 5 to 10 and keep blooming in warm weather, after most violas stop. Let them tumble over the tops of containers, or mass them in the landscape for deep burgundy-purple color with hints of white, gold and lavender.

Pink Flowering Maple

Hardy in USDA Zones 9 to 11, Abutilon x hybridum 'Rosea', also called pink flowering maple, is a shrub with graceful, drooping stems. Its pink blooms open in spring and summer, while the foliage stays evergreen in mild winter climates. It's lovely in hanging baskets or other containers.

Pink Jasmine (Jasmium polyanthus)

Let this evergreen vine tumble over an arbor or espalier it on a wall or trellis. Jasminum polyanthus Pink Jasmine grows to 20 feet, with fragrant, pinkish-white spring blooms. Hardy in USDA Zones 8 to 10, this trailing plant also grows as a ground cover or in containers.

Trailing Geranium 'Calliope Lavender Rose'

Count on this geranium, 'Calliope Lavender Rose', for mounding/trailing color all summer long. A cross between a zonal and an Ivy geranium, it does well in low-light — even just four hours of sun a day. Move it indoors, to a cool, bright location, when the temperatures drop. When spring returns, move it back into your garden.

Dichondra 'Silver Falls'

Dichondra 'Silver Falls' accents the bright 'Blue A Fuse' petunias and 'Breathless White' euphorbia in this hanging basket. Dichondra is a great "spiller', or trailing plant, for window boxes and other containers, too. It's a herbaceous perennial for zones 10 to 12, but can be overwintered as a houseplant if you're careful not to overwater.

Viola Anytime Dove

Hanging baskets and other containers are perfect for Viola Anytime Dove. The semi-trailing plants also add a splash of white to the landscape for gardeners in USDA Zones 5 and warmer, often blooming into the winter.

Begonia and Ivy Windowbox

While this begonia, (Surefire Rose Begonia benariensis) can't tolerate a frost or freeze, its trailing companion, Hedera helix 'Patricia', overwinters in zones 5 to 9. You can also enjoy the ivy indoors as a houseplant.

Vinca

Plant Vinca major, sometimes called periwinkle, or Vinca minor, for an evergreen ground cover in shady or wooded areas. Both will bloom, starting in the spring, and both can spread aggressively under the right conditions. Some states list one or both as invasive, so check to see if there are planting restrictions in your area. Shown here: Vinca reticulata, an annual trailing plant for containers or landscapes that is hardy in zones 7 to 10.

Anytime Pansiola 'Iris'

Violet blue flowers with white and yellow accents make Anytime Pansiola 'Iris' a bright choice for winter gardens. These Viola x wittrockiana plants often bloom into the winter in hardiness zones 5 to 10. They have a mounding/trailing growth habit.

'Bronze Carpet' Stonecrop

Plant Sedum spurium ‘Bronze Carpet’ in a rock garden, border or container in full to partial sun. This drought-tolerant, trailing succulent is semi-evergreen where the winters are mild; the plants are hardy in USDA Zones 3 to 9. Small pink flowers sometimes appear.

Thyme 'Creeping'

A short-lived perennial herb, 'Creeping' thyme is relatively easy to overwinter indoors. To grow it as a houseplant, give it a sunny window. Outdoors, in hardiness zones 5 to 9, it fills in between stepping stones as an aromatic groundcover.

Prostrate Rosemary

Plant trailing or prostrate rosemary in a window box or other planter to keep this popular herb close to your kitchen, or grow it as a ground cover. A perennial in zones 7 to 10, it sometimes overwinters in zone 6 gardens. If you prefer, pot it up to enjoy as a houseplant, and water only enough to keep it from drying out. Rosemary needs a cool room in your home, preferably in a sunny, south-facing window.

Duckfoot Ivy

Hedera helix takes it common name, duckfoot ivy, from the shape of its charming leaves. Hardy in zones 5 to 9, it's a nice spiller, or trailing plant, for containers, and spreads easily in sunny or shady landscapes. If your winter is very cold, dig some of this ivy to overwinter indoors; it's adaptable as a houseplant.

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