colours conservation garden design garden photography gardening ornamental trees and shrubs shrubs winter gardens

Colourful Stems


In the first few months of each new year the garden treats us to a colourful show of bright and varied coloured stems of shrubs. The most colourful are the dogwoods and willows of which we grow several specially chosen for their coloured stems. They glow in any bright days at this time of year.

This selection of stems cut from our garden include dogwood, Kerria, willow, bamboo and Winter Jasmine.


The first pair of photos shows Cornus, the first is “Midwinter Fire” which we grow alongside our summerhouse just where it gets backlit by the winter sun, the second is “Cardinal” of which we have several specimens around the garden as they look good in any light.

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Below is neither a dogwood or willow but an extremely red stemmed Acer called “Sango Kaku”, which we have planted alongside Cornus “Midwinter Fire”. We look forward to seeing them grow together.


The Cardinals in our front garden grow in front of our White-stemmed Birch, Betula utilis “Silver Queen”.



We keep adding shrubs with coloured stems and yesterday I took these cuttings below off gardening friend Pete’s fiery willow.


Sometimes the coloured stems are made even more special with the addition of flowers. The willow below with its black stems glow with the emergence of its white flowers at this time of year.


I shall finish with the photo of a bunch of stems cut from our bamboos.


By greenbenchramblings

A retired primary school head teacher, I now spend much of my time gardening in our quarter acre plot in rural Shropshire south of Shrewsbury. I share my garden with Jude my wife a newly retired teacher , eight assorted chickens and a plethora of wildlife. Jude does all the heavy work as I have a damaged spine and right leg. We also garden on an allotment nearby. We are interested in all things related to gardens, green issues and wildlife.

8 replies on “Colourful Stems”

Great post–I’m a bamboo lover, and envious that you have black bamboo. Unfortunately, it’s an invasive and must be contained. Someday I’ll try the clumping variety. A friend has it and I beg for it, making all sorts of small sculptures and labyrinths with it. And, of course, it makes terrific stakes for the garden.

I love the acer “Sango-kaku” for it’s red stems too. They really extend it’s season of interest.

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