Fall is just around the corner!
And with it, the fall colors…..so are you ready to transition your yard’s color scheme to the beautiful earth tones that autumn has to offer… yellows, oranges, browns, reds, and purples..?
Since a lot of the summer bloomers are coming to an end it is now time to enlist the help of these cool-weather flowers.
Nothing speaks Fall like pansies and mums, so that is where we will start….
1.) PANSIES “Viola x wittrockiana”
Pansies are great planted in the ground or in a container. As soon as the hot temperatures are gone you can plant these happy little flowers.
There are many, many colors to choose from. Pansies do look best when planted close together….so buy as many as you can and pack’em in. Don’t forget to keep them watered and be sure to deadhead to keep them blooming.
Plant in full sun in rich fertile soil…..and enjoy til the end of Spring (or when the weather heats up.)
2.) GARDEN MUMS “Chrysanthemum spp.”
With many beautiful colors to choose from the garden-mum is a favorite of many for the Fall!
Even though most mums are hardy and can survive our winters here in zone 7, they are usually treated as an annual. Most everyone buys them in the fall and then discards them once they have finished blooming.
The way to do it with these flowers and save money is once you buy your mums this fall, re-pot them in good soil, enjoy them for the season, then bring them indoors to overwinter, and once Spring comes plant them in the ground, so when fall arrives you already have your mums.
You could also try planting them in the ground as soon as you buy them but do it as early in fall as possible ( no later than mid-September) so that they have time to try and set roots before the freezing temps arrive.
A lot of Garden Mums are hardy in zones 4-9. The more common ones you find in the stores everywhere in fall are called “Florist Mums” and they are typically hardy in zones 7-9. Just make sure what you are buying.
Remember, mums, love full sun and do not like to dry out. Dead-head to keep them blooming and healthy.
3.) Rosemary “Salvia rosmarinus”
One of my favorite evergreens!
Now when I think of Rosemary…I think of an aroma that reminds me of Thanksgiving every time I touch the leaves. I don’t think of showy blooms. This plant is mainly used for its aroma, texture, and culinary uses which is well worth it in my opinion. The fact that it is evergreen is a bonus.
Rosemary makes a great container plant….you can add some pansies to really make the arrangement pop.
Plant in full sun in fertile, well-draining soil and enjoy.
4.) Coral Bells “Heuchera”
Coral Bells..aka..alumroot, makes for an interesting ground cover.
There are many varieties to choose from so you will need to choose based on how much shade or light you have.
I prefer the ones that thrive in shade…..because my shade gardens are usually the ones that need a little extra color and texture…, especially in the winter months. Check out this Post for more perennial ground covers.
Plant these guys around some deep green evergreens for a beautiful look….in a container or in the ground.
5.) Feather Reed Grass “Calamagrostis acutiflora“ (Karl Foerster)
While I love flowers…I have to say there is something about grasses that make a garden seem both wild and calming at the same time.
When it comes to texture this grass will deliver. And the Fall and Winter colors it brings to the table ( a beautiful golden hue)…you will love. Makes for a great container plant…add some mums and maybe some trailing pansies and you have a lovely Fall planter.
Not only for show….this guy also serves as erosion control as its roots go deep….which helps to hold the earth together.
Plant in full sun to part shade. Grows 3′ – 6′ tall, loves fertile, moist, well-drained soil but is also tolerant of drought and poor soils.
You now have a few flowers in mind to hit the store with that you know will add some texture and autumn color. Get these guys in the ground (or a planter) and come home to a very inviting yard.
Happy Fall Planting!