Autumn is not solely about the leaves turning. There are plants to plant for fall garden color to add more splashes of color to autumns palette.
Once we’ve tucked in our fall and winter crops for the season. The maintenance is now a minimal task and so it leaves a little extra time to admire the surroundings.
Knock Out Rose Bush
Pictured here is one of the last brilliant blooming cycles of our Knock Out Rose bush.
We’ve been quite impressed with this special rose. It’s very non-picky though still quite prickly. Knockouts are often called a “landscape rose” because it can be used in many landscape settings that would otherwise be unfriendly toward roses.
Like a regular floribunda, the knock out rose flowers in prolific cycles and clipping the spent blossoms is not really necessary.
The Knockout Rose is a Great Landscape Plant:
- Naturally resistant to disease
- Easy to grow
- Prolific blossoms
- Several long blooming cycles
Toad lilies is another favorite fall garden plant. These delicate and sweetly fragrant lilies come in various colors, grow to 30″ tall and bloom prolifically from mid summer to autumn.
The toad lily blossom’s prominent stamen gives it a kind of passion flower look, and the shape and color of the blossoms are reminiscent of orchids. We love seeing these bright and cheery blooms when not much else is left to bloom.
Red Dogwood Berries
The birds have gone crazy eating the dogwood berries, and the bright red berries add lovely color to the yard landscape. There for awhile, every other branch was aflutter with birds. They seemed to move through in shifts.
First came the brown thrashers, then the goldfinches and cardinals. Then came the robins. The goldfinches, in particular, look rather dashing this time of year, with a mellow yellow sheen of color flitting about.
Gorgeous Goldfinches and One Goldfinch Rescue
Speaking of goldfinches, living in the woods as we do, we have a number of birds each year that crash into our glass windows. We’ve taken measures to try and thwart that but it still happens.
Fortunately, most are just stunned, and with a little TLC (and protection from other opportunistic predators like our cat and dogs), most are nurtured and loved back to health until they’re able to fly away.
The other day, it was a lovely goldfinch, dubbed Fernando. He stayed with us for awhile, thoroughly enjoying and soaking up the soft strokes and neck-scratching. As well.
Fernando finally flew away when he was startled by the flick of LeAura’s braid as she was shaking a mosquito away from her ears. She and the “kids” were outside with the bird getting eaten alive by mosquitos, but when it comes to saving a bird, none of that matters!
If you love birds, you’ll enjoy this really cool tool that allows you to click through to see the bird’s colors for each month of the year.
American Male Goldfinch in Autumn Colors
The Last of the Hummingbirds
And it’s with a mix of gratitude and sadness that we’ve observed the number of hummingbirds decline as they depart for more temperate climes to the south. The last two remaining—a female and a young male—just left for warmer zones. southward. What a joy they were to have humming around all summer!
We’ve enjoyed catching hummers with our trail cams, but this one was captured with an iPhone. While the little bird didn’t add a lot of color, she more than made up for it in cuteness. Hope she comes back to our little garden next year.
One last beauty to share is that of our deciduous winterberry holly (Ilex verticillata).
The birds eat the holly berries after they’ve devoured other sweeter berries. Holly berries are stout and will last longer into winter. For now, our birds are flocking to the red dogwood berries. Once those are gone, they’ll turn more to the tarter holly berries.
The green leaved branches of the holly bush are rather open and shrub like, looking a bit like privet. The real showing is autumn when the red berries on the green background dazzles the beholder.
Holly berries sustain the birds when other food is scarce.
Oh! And if you’re interested in the leaf blower comparison and competition, you can read and watch about that here.
“May your gardens flourish and your harvests be bountiful, and when you look upon your little Eden, may you see that it is good.”
~Coleman Alderson, GardensAll.com
Cordless Leaf Blowers
Living in the woods as we do, if we didn’t have a leaf blower we’d be raking leaves all day every day. If you also have a lot of trees, we did a side-by-side review of two leaf blowers. We’re liking the battery operated leaf blowers best for several reasons, and you can see more about that as well as a video of our leaf-blower “race” here.
G. Coleman Alderson is an entrepreneur, land manager, investor, gardener, and author of the novel, Mountain Whispers: Days Without Sun. Coleman holds an MS from Penn State where his thesis centered on horticulture, park planning, design, and maintenance. He’s a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and a licensed building contractor for 27 years. “But nothing surpasses my 40 years of lessons from the field and garden. And in the garden, as in life, it’s always interesting because those lessons never end!” Coleman Alderson