I have my favorites among winter flowering plants, and one in particular, the Algerian iris, makes me feel that we are really in the running in the pursuit of this sport. And by "we" I mean those of us in the greater Washington, D.C. area. Many of us tried to grow this plant in the past, and few if any of us saw flowers. The developing buds evidently freeze readily, and although the plants survived from year to year, the flowers did not develop properly. But recent winters have been different, and it's a real pleasure to see it blooming each year now. That's it center right in the image above.
The image above does not give the full roll call of today's garden: I had cut some Helleborus foetidus for this group, but they got lost along the way and I did not notice their absence until the images had been made. Winter honeysuckle has buds today but no open flowers. Helleborus niger, the Christmas rose, is in advanced bud only.
Here's what's in the group above: how many can you pick out? Look for these: Camellia sasanqua, Jasminum nudiflorum, Iris unguicularis, rose hips, Narcissus tazetta, Chimonanthus praeox 'Luteus', Adiantum venustum, Adiantum capillus-veneris, Skimmia "Brookside", Ruscus aculeatus, Smilax smallii, Smilax laurifolia, Arum italicum, Galanthus elwesii, Rosa 'Safrano', Iris foetidissima, Hedera helix 'Manda's Crested', Viola walteri, Cyclamen persicum, garden hellebores and (mostly hidden) a leaf of Fatsia japonica.