With careful planning, and a list of fall and winter blooming plants, you can have blooms and berries to enliven your garden all year round. After all, as summer blooms die, you'll want the right plants to provide color through the cooler seasons of the year!
Many summer plants bloom into the early fall, but finding plants that will bloom until winter chill arrives is sometimes difficult. If you have a spot with full sun, asters are a good choice to bring late fall jewel tones into your garden. Covered with pink, blue, purple, or white blooms, asters are also great cut flowers to bring that color inside on gray days. They grow well in USDA zones 4 through 8.
If you love vining plants, the sweet autumn clematis may be a great choice for a fence or deck railing. It will tolerate sun or partial shade, and blooms profusely with scented white blooms. Grow it in USDA zones 4 through 9. Be aware, though, that this is an aggressive vine and can rapidly overwhelm your yard.
If you love lilies, the toad lily will provide perennial fall blooms in shady, moist spots in the garden. The interesting flowers resemble orchids and lend an air of the exotic. These lilies grow in USDA zones 4 through 9.
Russian sage is another flowering plant that will bring scent to your garden in USDA zones 5 through 9. Blue flowers and silver foliage make this a nice contrast to the traditional fall colors. This perennial will spread over the years. Plant in full sun.
Another great cut flower is the Japanese anemone. Plant this one in full sun with plenty of room as it will spread. The large poppy shaped flowers come in pink or white. Plant this flower in USDA zones 4 through 8.
Winter is an even more difficult season for flowering plants but there are some good choices even for cool weather. If you love clematis and have space for another vine, the clematis "snow bells" will bring scent to your garden in January through March. Trail them around doors or windows to bring the scent of spring inside every time you open the door.
Firethorn produces bright red or pale yellow berries from fall through winter. It makes a great addition to Christmas decorating if trained around doors and windows. Plant it with winter jasmine, another fall and winter blooming vine with bright yellow flowers November through to spring.
For a large display, plant honeysuckle. This perennial favorite in old-style gardens produces fragrant blooms from December through March.
The Christmas rose blooms just in time for Christmas and continues into March. Plant these taller plants among a carpet of snowdrops. The snowdrops, available in many colors will push up through the soil in January.
Witch hazel, with its bright yellow flowers on bare stems, blooms December through February. This plant is perennial and will spread so give it plenty of room. It will also bring fragrance to your yard.