The Garden in Autumn

Fall, autumn… the final season before winter sets in once again.  It can be rather depressing as the garden is finishing up its summer splendor and plants are returning to the earth to sleep away the winter months.  But is it a time to be down or can it be one last kick at the can before the snow flies.

Autumn is a wonderful time with all its blazing glory of colour, many plants put out one last big splash before taking a much needed rest and some plants like Arum even begin their growing cycle now, sprouting from the ground with their tropical-like foliage and holding through the cold wet months adding that much needed foliar element to the winter white.

skimmia flower budsA host of plants do their flowering at this time of the year and some like Skimmia japonica even produce flower bud clusters reminiscent of tiny red berries that will hold through winter ready to bust open with their wonderfully fragrant flowers at the first sign of spring’s warmth.

Cones come into their own now too showing us another way plants express themselves in interesting and attractive ways.  What would those Thanksgiving and Christmas displays be without pine cones.

This is prime time for many plants to produce fruit, such abundant and colourful displays add both a fantastic addition to our fallscapes and offer much needed food for birds and other wildlife, keeping them fed through the lean months. 

Autumn is a time when we can reap the bounty of our veggie gardens, pumpkins are ripe for harvest and transformation into pies, potatoes, onions, garlic, carrots, squash all fresh, delicious and grown in your own back yard (or pot!) can be enjoyed now.  Autumn is a time for celebration, a toast to the great spring and summer that it follows.Heuchera foliage collage

Grasses with their seed heads swaying in the breeze gently usher us into winter letting us know it is time for planting our spring flowering bulbs and winter veggies.

Heuchera and its relatives Heucherella and Tiarella, all evergreen perennials, have a wardrobe change before the winter season giving us more intense and vibrant leaf colour and markings.

But least we forget the fall colours that many plants display for our amazement.  Even some conifers give us a splash of gold and amber before retiring.

The kings of fall colour are of course the maples with their staggering array of yellows, ambers, orange, red and burgundy they are simply stunning in their glory making the fall season a wonderland of colour.

Interesting Plants With Attractive Fall & Winter Interests

Flowers For Late Summer

Flowers From Late Summer Into Fall

  • Buddleia
  • Calluna
  • Caryopteris (fragrant)
  • Cimicifuga (fragrant)
  • Clethra (fragrant)
  • Hibiscus
  • Roscoe
  • Zingiber

Flowers for Winter

Flowers - Fall to Winter

  • Hamamelis - Witchhazel
  • Camellia sasanqua
  • Daphne x transatlantica 'Eternal Fragrance'

Cotoneaster Berries Plants With Attractive Fruit
  • Aronia
  • Callicarpa
  • Cotoneaster
  • Daphne tangutica
  • Nandina
  • Panax
  • Pyracantha
  • Skimmia
  • Vaccinium
  • Viburnum

Conifers With Fall Colour Conifers With Fall Colour
  • Larix - Larch
  • Metasequoia
  • Pseudolarix
  • Taxodium

Oakleaf Hydrangea Fall Colour Shrubs with Fall Colour
  • Acer palmatum
  • Aronia
  • Berberis
  • Clethra
  • Cornus
  • Cotinus
  • Enkianthus
  • Euonymus
  • Hydrangea quercifolia
  • Rhus
  • Vaccinium
  • Viburnum

Maples The Kings of Autumn Trees with Attractive Fall Colour
  • Acer - Maples
  • Cercidiphyllum - Katsura
  • Cornus - Dogwood
  • Fagus - Beech
  • Ginkgo
  • Gleditsia
  • Nyssa
  • Oxydendron - Sourwood
  • Pyrus - Flowering Pear
  • Quercus - Oak

If you would like more information about which of these plants would work well in your garden, please don't hesitate to call 604.882.1201 or visit Art's Nursery in person. We'd be happy to assist in any way possible

Lyle Courtice Lyle Courtice, A.H.
 Lyle is a certified Horticultural Technician (Niagara College), Landscape Designer, Nurseryman and the proprietor of HarkAway Botanicals.
Since 1980 Lyle has worked in both the retail and wholesale sectors of the horticultural trade; he operates his own wholesale nursery, which focuses on an eclectic mix of rare and choice plant material from Asia, Europe and North America.
Lyle has appeared on The Canadian Gardener and is a contributing author to A Grower’s Choice (Raincoast books 2001).  His horticultural expertise makes him sought after as a consultant, lecturer, photographer, instructor and writer.  An industry veteran, Lyle is esteemed within the horticultural community for his passionate and often humorous enthusiasm for plants.
Author: Lyle Courtice Source: Harkaway Botanicals


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8940 192nd Street,
Surrey, BC, Canada,
V4N 3W8

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