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Australia’s Most Popular Winter-Flowering Plants

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Cool-season flowers 

The cold season might see us spending more time indoors, but there’s still plenty to enjoy in the garden, especially with the wide range of winter-flowering plants available.

In fact, some plants really come into their own at this time of year, when many other plants have stepped out of the spotlight.

Adding some of these Australian winter-flowering plants to your garden is a fantastic way to brighten even the chilliest day.

Best winter-flowering plants

Winter-blooming flowers come from all corners of the globe, meaning there are varieties to suit almost all Australian climates.From evergreen perennials and native shrubs to winter bulbs, there’s something for every winter garden. Here are 15 of Australia’s most popular winter-flowering plants.


Hellebores are winter-flowering perennials with striking blooms in colours ranging from dark purple and creamy yellow to chocolate and charcoal.

These gorgeous winter-flowering plants have handsome evergreen foliage, and their long-lasting flowers are perfect for brightening up a garden. 

They’re long-lived and drought tolerant once established (although they prefer moisture), and love semi-shaded spots such as under tree canopies in woodland plantings. 

With Hellebores in your garden, you will find that the vibrant colours of their blooms serve as the perfect antidote to the dreary winter days.


Primulas are compact, easy-to-grow perennials with richly coloured blooms and a sweet fragrance. These winter-blooming flowers are a delight in any garden, and their compact size means they can fit in even the smallest spaces.

Flowering profusely from winter into spring, Primulas are frost tolerant and prefer a lightly shaded position. 

Keep them fairly dry over winter and increase moisture levels in the warmer months.


Cyclamens are tuberous groundcover plants that bloom during autumn and winter. 

These winter-flowering plants have heart-shaped leaves that add an extra layer of interest to their already charming flowers, making them essential for any winter garden.

Preferring part to full shade, they make for a beautiful seasonal carpet under trees, and work well in pots that can be brought indoors during flowering.

They’re frost tolerant, and require little water or maintenance once established. The tubers are dormant over summer.

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Camellias are dense shrubs with glossy, evergreen leaves and exquisite blooms in the colder months. The winter-blooming flowers they produce are perfect for classic, timeless gardens.

They are frost tolerant, hardy plants that are easy to care for. Camellias are long-lived, with some varieties growing to be shrub-like in form.

Provided they have adequate (full to part) shade, they’ll grow in almost all parts of Australia, although they’re less suited to the tropics.

Boronia Lipstick

Boronias are small, upright native shrubs, and the Lipstick cultivar has beautiful, bell-shaped flowers from winter into spring. 

These Australian winter-flowering plants are a unique beauty that make a captivating addition to any garden. Boronia Lipstick is also renowned for its intoxicating fragrance, making it a must-have in your garden that will engage all the senses.

Make sure they have adequate water, particularly during hot, dry spells over summer. Plant in full sun to light shade, either grouped en masse or standalone. If planting in pots, use a potting mix designed for native plants.

Daphne Perfume Princess

The Daphne Perfume Princess variety is an indispensable addition to any winter garden. Their sweet fragrance fills the air, enticing you to stay outdoors despite the chill.

Clusters of delicate flowers adorn the plant, and their deep green leaves provide a lush background. 

These plants are relatively low-maintenance, but they do best in well-drained soils with dappled shade. A grouping of Daphne Perfume Princess or Perfume Princess White plants near a walkway is sure to please visitors.


Hardenbergia is an Australian winter climber that bursts into bloom when most plants are dormant.

Varieties such as ‘Free & Easy‘, ‘Happy Wanderer‘, and ‘Meema‘ are covered in pea-like flowers, which range from vibrant purples to soft lavenders.

The wiry, scrambling vines are perfect for covering a trellis or fence, adding a vertical element to your garden. Hardenbergia is hardy and drought-tolerant once established, and it’s an excellent choice for any winter garden.

Banksia Birthday Candles

Some varieties of Banksia make exceptional winter-flowering plants, such as Banksia Birthday Candles. 

This plant is a spectacle to behold with its vibrant orange cylindrical flowers that burst into flames during the winter. The textured, serrated leaves add to its appeal.

Banksia is a native Australian plant and is very hardy, handling both coastal and inland conditions. Plant them in groups to create a dramatic effect in your garden. 

Grevillea Big Red

Grevillea Big Red is an Australian native that’s perfect for those seeking winter-blooming flowers

This shrub showcases stunning red spider-like flowers that are rich in nectar, attracting honeyeaters during winter. 

Grevillea is excellent for drought-tolerant gardens, requiring minimal watering and care. Plant them in a sunny spot with well-drained soil, and they’ll reward you with vibrant blooms. 

Grevillea foliage is evergreen, providing an attractive backdrop in the garden year-round.

Pieris Little Heath Green 

Pieris Little Heath Green is a compact shrub with cascading clusters of bell-shaped flowers. 

These delicate winter-blooming flowers, coupled with vibrant green foliage, make Pieris an enchanting addition to any garden. 

Pieris thrives in well-drained acidic soil and partial shade. It’s particularly effective when planted in groups, creating a sea of tiny lantern-like blooms. 

The shrub’s new foliage in spring adds an additional layer of visual interest with its fiery red tint.

Albany Daisy

The Albany Daisy is a ground-covering treasure that brings a dash of cheerfulness to any winter garden. 

The delicate, vibrant flowers emerge in abundance and act as a blanket of colour come winter. Plant them in well-drained soil and a sunny location for the best display. 

Protea (Ruby, Cream Mink)

With their dramatic flowers, Protea can make an exceptional addition to any garden of winter-blooming flowers

Protea Australis Ruby and Protea Cream Mink bloom from winter to spring, boasting large, exotic flowers that look as if they are made from velvet. 

They are exceptionally hardy and can withstand dry and windy conditions. Proteas require well-drained soil and prefer a sunny location. 

The blooms make excellent cut flowers and are often used in arrangements for their striking appearance and longevity.

Iris Histroides George

Iris Histrioides George is one of the most beautiful winter-flowering plants, widely considered an exquisite winter gem. 

Their striking purple bulbs are best planted in autumn to produce their delightful blooms in winter. Place them in a location with well-drained soil and full sun. 

The Iris Histrioides George is also frost hardy and requires little maintenance.


Flowering through winter and spring, Correa varieties such as Alba, Dusky Bells and Ember Chimes provide gardens with tubular flowers that dangle like small bells and are a favourite among honeyeaters. 

Their evergreen foliage is dense, making Correa an excellent choice for hedging or as a ground cover. They’re tolerant of wind and salt spray, making them ideal for coastal gardens. 

Plant Correa in well-drained soil, in sun or partial shade, and they’ll thrive with minimal care.

Witch Hazel

Witch Hazel is a winter marvel with its spidery, fragrant blossoms. The yellow to red flowers are a warm welcome during the coldest months.

Witch Hazel is not only valued for its beauty but also for its medicinal properties. It thrives in well-drained, slightly acidic soil in full sun to part shade. 

Prune lightly just after flowering to maintain shape. Plant them near windows or paths to fully enjoy their fragrance.

Winter’s Floral Wonders Await

With these 15 spectacular winter-flowering plants, your garden can be a haven of colour and fragrance even during the chilliest days.

As well as being beautiful in their own right, these Australian winter-flowering plants are wonderful for filling in the gaps in visual interest that many gardeners discover over winter, and many of them will stay looking good (sans flowers) the whole year round. Don’t let the cold keep you indoors – start planting some hellebores, camellias, daphnes, or any of these stunning winter-blooming flowers, and you’ll soon have your garden thriving through winter.

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