According to forecasts, this December will be ideal for winter gardening.  Zone 9 gardeners can anticipate temperatures in the low 60’s to mid 70’s with a couple of days with high in the upper 50’s.  The weather is perfect for gardening – not too hot, not too cold.  Winter annuals and perennials bask and thrive under blue skies and lots of sunshine.  Take advantage of our subtropical growing conditions to plant frost-proof flowers such as alyssum, lobelias, pansies, petunias, stock, and sweet peas.

Lobelia

Pansies

Colder days mean enjoying heartier soups and stews featuring vegetables that can be grown during winter. The easy-to-grow Brassica family of broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower can be planted now for early winter and spring harvesting. Herbs continue benefit from Florida’s sunshine through the winter months and can be added to patio containers or kitchen beds.  Don’t be hesitant to include them along as edible fillers with your flowers.

Cabbage.

Parsley

Our zone temperatures rarely get cold enough to see snow blanketing the ground, but you can have a white Christmas with beautiful white flowers.  Elegant white poinsettias, fairytale pansies, long-lasting petunias, and fragrant white alyssum can inspire give the illusion of snow in your landscape without the workload of shoveling sidewalks.  Burpee’s Shock Wave Coconut petunias are the classic winter annual with a fitting tropical name for Florida garden beds.

Shock Wave Petunias - Coconut.

Alyssum.