Heaths are among the most impressive winter-flowering plants in Northwest gardens. Many heaths bloom from January through March, but a few bloom from November through April or even May. One of the finest is pictured here flanking the walk in Jennifer Aflatooni's front yard in Port Orchard, Washington: pink-flowered Erica darleyensis 'Darley Dale'. Its white-flowered cousin E. d. 'Silberschmelze' (sometimes sold as E. d. 'Alba' or 'Mediterranean White') is another good choice.
These tough, reliable plants thrive in Sunset climate zones 2-7. Each plant will grow about 1 foot tall with a 2-foot spread in five years. Set out plants this month in well-drained soil on a site that gets full sun.