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Past Articles Library | Fall Flowering Perennials Plants


Fall Flowers And
Fall Flowering Perennials Plants

16 of the best perennials for fall flowers and color!

Although many perennials have long flowering times and will put on a show for you longer than others, none of them flower all season long.

Of course this is plus, because as we all know you can then choose several different perennials that will only flower in spring, summer, or fall - giving you color throughout the year.

When plants flower however, and for how long, can depend upon your individual climate, so the perennial plants we have listed in this article are going to take the guess work out of the equation for you.

Today we are sharing with you 16 tried and true plants that will continue to flower from late summer into fall, or they will flower in the autumn months only.

Either way, your garden will have showy flowers in the declining months of the year after your summer flowers have long given out, giving your garden a graceful way to enter into winter!


Achillea (Yarrow)

Climate Zones: 3 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 1 to 5 feet (.3 to 1.5 m)
Water: Moderate
Flowers In: Summer into early autumn
Flower Colors: Yellow, pink, red, white
Culture: Yarrow grow best in reasonably good, well-drained soil. Once established they are drought tolerant, but they look better with moderate watering. Cut out the spent stems after flowering. Divide crowded clumps in the spring.





Agastache (Hyssop)

Climate Zones: 8 to 10
Sun: Full to light shade
Height: Varieties from 2 to 5 feet (.6 to 1.5 m)
Water: Regular to moderate
Flowers In: Summer and autumn
Flower Colors: Red, purple, pink, blue, white
Culture: Plant agastaches in well-drained soil. Plants usually tolerate some drought, but they grow and flower best with regular water. Full sun gives the most prolific show of flowers, but you'll get good performance in light shade as well. Propagate by seed, division in spring, or stem cuttings.



Aster (Michaelmas or Easter Daisy)

Climate Zones: 4 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 1 to 6 feet (.3 to 2 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Summer and autumn
Flower Colors: Blue, purple, red, pink, white
Culture: Asters are easy to care for and undemanding plants, needing only a sunny location (except for white wood aster, A. divaricatus, which prefers shade) and reasonably good, well-drained soil. Most of the taller asters can fall over by flowering time and need to be staked early in the season, or cut back the stems by about one third in early summer to make them more compact. Plants cut back will flower a bit later. Dig and divide the roots only when vigor diminishes and the center of the clump becomes bare and woody. Divide in the spring, replanting only the strong divisions from the clump's perimeter. Asters can also be propagated by stem cutting taken in summer.





Chrysanthemum (Painted Daisy)

Climate Zones: 4 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 2 to 3 feet (.6 to 1 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Spring, summer, autumn
Flower Colors: Pink, red, purple, yellow, gold, bronze, white
Culture: Plant mums in good, well-drained soil. All but the lowest growing mums should be pinched back several times during the growing season to keep plants compact. After flowering has finished, cut back stems to about 8 inches (20 cm); in cold climates, use the cut stems as mulch over the plants. When growth starts the next year, cut the remainder of the stems to the ground. Clumps will need dividing every other year or so. Divide in early spring.

Note: Chrysanthemums can be transplanted while in flower, which makes them useful for instant landscapes in early autumn. Water thoroughly the day before (or at least several hours before) digging plants, retaining as much of the root system as possible. Water thoroughly after placing the plants to settle them in. As with any transplanting, it is best move mums in early morning or late evening when temperatures are cool. Monitor plants carefully for several days for wilting, and shade briefly during the hotter periods of the day, if necessary.





Coreopsis (Tickseed)

Climate Zones: 4 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 6 inches to 3 feet (15 cm to 1 m)
Water: Moderate to little
Flowers In: Spring, summer, autumn
Flower Colors: Yellow
Culture: Coreopsis are trouble-free plants, thriving even in relatively poor soil as long as it is well-drained. Once established, they grow well with relatively little water. Remove spent flowers to prolong flowering. Most varieties spread rapidly and many need frequent division, as often as every 2 to 3 years, to stay in control. They can also be propagated from seed.




Helenium (Sneezeweed)

Climate Zones: 3 to 9
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 2 to 5 feet (.6 to 1.5 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Summer and autumn
Flower Colors: Yellow, gold, red
Culture: Plant helenium in average soil. Don't fertilize them much; they flower better with little feeding. Best performance comes where summers are hot, but plants do need regular water to look their best. Taller varieties require staking. Clumps become crowded quickly, and should be divided every 2 or 3 years in the spring.





Hemerocallis (Daylily)

Climate Zones: 3 to 11
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 2.5 to 5 feet (.75 to 1.5 m)
Water: Regular to moderate
Flowers In: Spring, summer and autumn
Flower Colors: Yellow, gold, red, pink, purple, white
Culture: Most daylilies will survive with little attention, but they will grow and flower better if they are given regular water and well-drained soil. They thrive in full sun except where summers are hot and dry; in these areas, choose a spot in filtered sun or partial shade. Removing spent flowers will improve the plant's appearance and help promote more flowers in the reblooming varieties. Divide clumps when they become crowded, usually after 3 to 6 years; reblooming varieties do best if divided every other year. Divide in summer in cool-summer climates and where the growing season is short. Divide in autumn or early spring in hot-summer climates.






Malva (Mallow)

Climate Zones: 4 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 3 to 4 feet (1 to 1.2 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Summer and autumn
Flower Colors: Pink, blue, purple, white
Culture: Give mallows full sun except in the hottest climates, where they prefer light shade. They grow well in average soil as long as it's well drained. Though short lived, these plants are easy to raise from seed; volunteer seedlings often provide replacement plants.




Physostegia virginiana (False Dragonhead)

Climate Zones: 3 to 10
Sun: Full or light shade
Height: Varieties from 3 to 4 feet (1 to 1.2 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Summer and early autumn
Flower Colors: Pink, purple, white
Culture: False dragonhead grows best if given good soil and plenty of moisture; it flowers less freely with poorer soil and less water. The flower stalks may need support to stay upright. Plants spread quickly; to keep them in bounds, divide clumps every 2 years in early spring.





Ratibida (Mexican Hat, Prairie Coneflower)

Climate Zones: 3 to 9
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 2 to 4 feet (.6 to 1.2 m)
Water: Regular to moderate
Flowers In: Summer and early autumn
Flower Colors: Yellow, red, orange
Culture: These adaptable plants grow well in average, well-drained soil and are tolerant of some drought. Propagate by seed sown in the spring.





Rudbeckia (Coneflower)

Climate Zones: 3 to 10
Sun: Full or light shade
Height: Varieties from 4 to 6 feet (1.2 to 2 m)
Water: Regular to moderate
Flowers In: Summer and autumn
Flower Colors: Yellow
Culture: Coneflowers ar easy to grow, requiring only average to good soil and moderate to regular water. To maintain good performance, divide clumps every 2 to 4 years in the spring.



Salvia (Sage)

Climate Zones: 5 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 1 to 5 feet (.3 to 1.5 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Spring, summer, autumn
Flower Colors: Purple, red, pink, blue, yellow, white
Culture: Most salvias are hardy to zone 5, but many can take colder weather if provided with adequate winter mulch. Salvias need good drainage, moderately fertile soil, and in most cases, regular water. All salvias can be propagated by stem cuttings taken during spring or summer. Spreading types can also be divided in the spring.



Sedum spectabile (Stonecrop)

Climate Zones: 4 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 1 to 3 feet (.3 to 1 m)
Water: Moderate
Flowers In: Late summer, autumn
Flower Colors: Pink, red, white
Culture: Sedums need well-drained soil but are not particular about fertility. Floppy stems and a decline in flowering indicate overcrowding. Divide clumps in early spring. Stem cuttings may also be taken in late spring to early summer.





Solidago and Solidaster (Goldenrod)

Climate Zones: 3 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 2 to 5 feet (.6 to 1.5 m)
Water: Moderate
Flowers In: Summer, autumn
Flower Colors: Yellow
Culture: Goldenrod are undemanding plants that grow well in wild gardens, or in borders; in either case, they accept average soil and are fairly drought tolerant. To control spreading and rejuvenate the clumps, divide them every 3 to 4 years in early spring.





Stokesia laevis (Stoke's Aster)

Climate Zones: 6 to 10
Sun: Full
Height: Varieties from 1 to 4 feet (.3 to 1.2 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Summer, autumn
Flower Colors: Blue, white, purple, pink, yellow
Culture: These plants are tolerant of average soils, but they must have good drainage, especially in the winter. In the coldest climates, provide winter protection with a covering of mulch or straw. When declining performance indicates overcrowding, divide clumps in early spring. New plants can also be started by sowing seed in the early spring.



Tricyrtis (Toad Lily)

Climate Zones: 4 to 9
Sun: Light to full shade
Height: Varieties from 2 to 3 feet (.6 to 1 m)
Water: Regular
Flowers In: Autumn
Flower Colors: Purple, pink, blue, white
Culture: Toad lilies are woodland plants and like moist, organically rich soil with good drainage. They rarely need division, but if you want to increase your planting, you can remove rooted pieces from a clump's perimeter in early spring. Plants may self-sow, producing abundant volunteer seedlings.

Note: For more read: How To Grow Tricyrtis - Toad Lily




Conclusion

Believe it or not, we have only scratched the surface of perennials that have fall flowers and color during the cooler months of the year. There are many, many more.

The list above, however, is a very good starting place if you are looking for some plants to spruce up your garden after your summer plants have tired out.

As you have just read, many of these perennial plants do well in just about any climate, and they offer a wide variety of colors, sizes, flower shapes, and foliage types.

They really do offer infinite possibilities and versatility, and that is why for several years in a row, perennial plants have been gardeners' top choice around the world. No surprise there!




Hilary Rinaldi is a member of the National Garden Writers Association, a nationally published writer, and a certified organic grower. She regularly speaks and writes about all gardening related topics, with an emphasis on making gardening a successful and enjoyable process for anyone who wants to learn. Weekend Gardener Monthly Web Magazine concentrates of giving detailed gardening tips and gardening advice to all levels of gardeners.

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