Good Life: City Planter

Plants with punch that will last all winter long

Recommendations for weather-hardy plantings from Mary Costello and Peter Smith of City Planter in Northern Liberties.


Contorted witch hazel (crazy branching) – Hamamelis virginiana



Ilex sky pencil (fastigiate) – Ilex crenata ‘Sky Pencil’




Ilex verticillata (berries) – Ilex verticillata



Upright junipers – Juniperus scopulorum or Juniperus virginiana



Topiaried junipers or boxwood (defined form) – Buxus sempervirens or Buxus sinica or Buxus harlandii


Chamaecyparis varieties (rich green, black hues) – Chamaecyparis [numerous species]



Any Meserve hollies (rich blue-green color) – Ilex x meserveae (not shown)

Any tree hollies (Nellie Stevens, etc for pyramidal form) – Ilex x ‘Nellie R. Stevens’ (not shown)






Mugo pine (needle evergreen, dense habitat) – Pinus mugo



Crimson barberries (purple leaves) – Berberis thunbergii var. atropurpurea




Euonymus emerald and gold (colorful evergreen leaves, low growing) – Euonymus fortunei ‘Emerald and Gold’



Winter jasmine (semi-evergreen and early yellow flowers) – Jasminum nudiflorum




Juniper procumbens nana (low and cascading green) – Juniperus procumbens nana




Cotoneasters (reddish green leaves) – Cotoneaster [numerous species]




Santolina incana (gray all winter) – Santolina incana or Santolina chamaecyparissus



Hellebores (heavy loved and leathery leaves) – Helleborus [numerous species]




Variegated liriope (strappy foliage in yellows, grays and black) – Liriope muscari




Stachys big ears (gray and fuzzy) – Stachys byzantina




Christmas fern (evergreen fern) – Polystichum acrostichoides



Variegated ivies (lots of varieties) – Hedera helix or Hedera hibernica



Dwarf conifers (tidy, compact, will fit into the smallest containers) (not shown)

Sedum vera Jamison (gray and succulent) – Sedum vera jamison (not shown)

Heuchera amber waves and plum pudding (colorful leaves all winter) – Heuchera ‘Amber Waves’ and Heuchera ‘Plumb Pudding’ (not shown)