Fall landscaping can sometimes be tricky, however, it is definitely necessary. Here are some options to warm up your landscape even as temperatures cool.
Without a doubt, maples are the kings of the autumn landscape. Sugar and Red maples are two popular (and large-growing) choices, whereas many Japanese varieties are a better choice for the smaller yard. Other smaller trees that offer good fall color are Japanese Stewartia and Dogwoods. Dogwoods produce red fruit in the fall, as well.
While Burning Bushes are popular for adding fall color, don’t overlook other options that offer flowers and fruit in addition to great foliage. Many viburnums have both, for instance, as do blueberries and serviceberries. Viburnums have large, showy flowers, whereas blueberry and serviceberry fruit is edible for humans as well as birds. Oak Leaf Hydrangeas don’t produce fruit, but their flowers are spectacular enough to warrant your consideration. Their nodding, pyramid-shaped blossoms darken to pink as their foliage turns to deep purple or bright red.
Fall flowers mean more than mums! Sedum’s foliage and flower buds are interesting throughout the summer season, finally blooming in pinks and rusts come autumn. Another autumn favorite is the Japanese Anemone, which produces beautiful flowers (also great for cutting) on long, elegant stems. For really big fall flower impact, try the Sweet Autumn Clematis. This perennial vine explodes with a profusion of tiny (and VERY fragrant) white flowers in fall, followed by attractive, whorled seed heads. And don’t forget, bulbs aren’t just for spring! Try the autumn crocus (Colchicum), a diminutive yet lovely little surprise in the fall landscape.
When selecting annuals in spring, don’t forget to think about your fall color palette. Many sunflowers (blooming in late summer/early fall) come in rich shades of brown, gold, and red, and Chocolate Cosmos look as delicious as they sound.