Winter is a beautiful time because the structure of trees and shrubs is exposed for us to see the
subtle colors and textures in twigs and branches. Evergreens show different shades of green. Birds search for berries, remaining fruit on trees, and seeds from the clutch of seed heads left behind after summer’s blooms.
A walk around North Tonawanda’s botanical garden gives us opportunity to notice what gardeners call “winter interest.” Plants with winter interest bring texture and color to the snowy and bare-branched landscape. Some plants have showy berries. Trees have interesting colors and patterns in their bark. Some plants bloom in the winter, offering tiny surprises to those who take time to notice.
Our botanical garden has many species of trees with different bark textures. Compare the giant willow near Sweeney Street with small trees and evergreens.
Evergreen trees and shrubs put on their own show. Varying shades of green are more apparent in winter, and berries can be blue, green, or red.
Crabapple trees, some with yellow fruit and some with red, offer color contrast to snow and cloudy skies. They provide nutrition to foraging wildlife. The sweet gum tree shows its prickly seed balls against the winter sky. Winter beauty is everywhere.