While many find peace in the cold, dark winter nights, we find ourselves yearning for lengthening sunlight, bursting flowers that brighten the quiet landscape, and the easy warmth that comes with spring.

Yes, we know it’s too early to wish for relief. Yes, we know we should learn to appreciate the changing seasons, the slow cadence of Mother Earth, the circle of life that drives our very existence. And we do. But for those days when the chill sits in your spine a beat too long, here’s our own curated collection of poetry and art to remind you of the more forgiving months. We’ve also included gardening tips and tricks, for those of you that have reluctantly pulled your verdant plants indoors for the season (and those of you with such green thumbs that your plants will thrive year-round). We won’t claim to be experts… So please, share your own advice in the comments below!

The Artist's Garden at Giverny, 1900 by Claude Monet

Claude Monet

Speak of the North
Charlotte Brontë

Speak of the North! A lonely moor
Silent and dark and trackless swells,
The waves of some wild streamlet pour
Hurriedly through its ferny dells.

Profoundly still the twilight air,
Lifeless the landscape; so we deem,
Till like a phantom gliding near
A stag bends down the drink the stream.

And far away a mountain zone,
A cold, white waste of snow-drifts lies,
And one star, large and soft and lone,
Silently light the unclouded skies.

If you leave plants outside during the colder months, add mulch and/or compost no more than three inches thick to stabilize root temperatures and infuse additional nutrients. Water before a freeze so they survive it hydrated.
The garden of the asylum at Saint-Remy Painting by Vincent Van Gogh

Vincent Van Gogh

Like Rain it Soundeth
Emily Dickinson

Like Rain it soundeth till it curved
And then I knew ’twas Wind –
It walked as wet as any Wave
But swept as dry as sand –
When it had pushed itself away
To some remotest Plain
A coming of the Hosts was heard
And that indeed was Rain –
It filled the Wells, it pleased the Pools
It warbled in the Road –
It pulled the spigot from the Hills
And let the Floods abroad –
It loosened acres, lifted seas
The sites of Centres stirred
Then like Elijah rode away
Upon a Wheel of Cloud.

Bring houseplants inside after spraying them with insecticide. Arrange them to receive indirect light, away from vents or drafty windows, and water sparingly.
10 Breathtaking Paintings Of Gardens

Jean-Honore Fragonard

To the Daisy
William Wordsworth

Bright Flower! whose home is everywhere,
Bold in maternal Nature’s care,
And all the long year through the heir
Of joy or sorrow;
Methinks that there abides in thee
Some concord with humanity,
Given to no other flower I see
The forest thorough!

Is it that Man is soon deprest?
A thoughtless Thing! who, once unblest,
Does little on his memory rest,
Or on his reason,
And Thou wouldn’st teach him how to find
A shelter under every wind,
A hope for times that are unkind
And every season?

Thou wander’st the wide world about,
Uncheck’d by pride or scrupulous doubt,
With friend to greet thee, or without,
Yet pleased and willing;
Meek, yielding to the occasion’s call,
And all things suffering from all,
Thy function apostolical
In peace fulfilling.

When the ground isn’t frozen or snowy, water your outdoor plants. They won’t need as much water as they do during the warm months since most plants will stay dormant.
Radical Color and Wild Beasts: Matisse, Derain, and the Friendship that Defined Fauvism - Artsy

Henri Matisse

L'Oiseau Bleu
Mary Coleridge

The lake lay blue below the hill.
O’er it, as I looked, there flew
Across the waters, cold and still,
A bird whose wings were palest blue.

The sky above was blue at last,
The sky beneath me blue in blue.
A moment, ere the bird had passed,
It caught his image as he flew.

Hard freezes can damage budding blossoms. Use old sheets or frost covers (not plastic!) to save outdoor plants with buds and open flowers.
The most beautiful gardens in art | Christie's

Edouard Manet

Sonnet 73
William Shakespeare

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruined choirs where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou seest the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by back night doth take away,
Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou seest the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the deathbed whereon it must expire,
Consumed with that which it was nourished by.
This thou perceiv’st, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

Have additional winter gardening suggestions? We’d love to read your advice in the comments section below!