We love fall. It’s our second transition season of the year, and it opens up our wardrobe options. The warmth and sunshine associated with late spring and summer are great, but the cool temps and campfires that define autumn are a cozy cool down from long, hot nights. As our moods shift from bright to deep, so do the colors of fall. If you’re less than impressed with what you’ve got going in your fall garden right now, it’s easy to bring some life back into your bleak landscape.
Generating some fall landscaping ideas now will enhance the season for your visiting family and friends as the holiday season kicks into gear. It will also give you a leg up when it comes to developing a great color palette for next year.
If you’re worn out from your summer parties and days at the lake, it can feel like landscaping is a task best left for next year. If your lawn and garden are unimportant to you, maybe you can wait. If you like to soak in all the beauty nature has to offer year-round, slap on your gloves and dig into these fall landscaping tips that will brighten your yard in every season of the year.
Whether we do it in garden beds, containers, or an outdoor plant stand, adding seasonal color in the fall is a great way to ease the emotional transition to winter. Deep, warm fall colors can mentally prepare us for a season of nesting and hibernation. While many people default to the standard autumn purples and oranges, tap into your own personal style. We could tell you what looks good in the fall until the cows come home, but the results will feel underwhelming if it isn’t a fit for what you want to see. Be honest with yourself. What do you like, and what colors make the biggest visual impact in your landscape?
If you don’t feel like getting down and dirty this late in the season, consider adding outdoor hanging plants to sprinkle in that seasonal color. You can easily remove your summer plants from their pots and replace them with fall plants that do much better in the short days and cooler nights to carry your display into winter.
All that seasonal color will provide you with a nice blanket of fall colors, but adding accents can create focal points and add visual interest to your landscape. Fall favorites like pumpkins, straw bales, and cornstalks deliver rich colors and textures that you can’t get with colorful plants and flowers alone.
Pumpkins provide seasonal flair throughout the fall. They work just as well in October as they do in November. Don’t limit yourself to the orange variety, though. Try mixing things up with ghost pumpkins and gourds to add variety to your color and textural palettes. Using a range of colors will add visual interest. As long as they don’t rot, they can also provide food for local wildlife later in the year.
Large outdoor plant pots can add height, as well as smooth, dense accents for your garden. Fill them with mums, marigolds, or any number of fall flowering annuals to bring rich colors up off the ground. If you really want to add some height, cornstalks give you nice vertical lines that keep the eyes moving and tie your whole landscape together.
Straw bales are another excellent option for fall. You can use them as seating when you have company over and can use them to prop your pumpkins up in the meantime. Hang onto them through the winter, and you can use them for growing vegetables next season. Many summer garden plants like tomatoes and pepper plants do very well in straw bales.
Just because temps are cooler and the sun is less plentiful doesn’t mean you have to abandon your vegetable garden. A fall vegetable garden can fill space with the same wonderful colors as some of our favorite fall flowers and fill the stock pot with the earthy flavors of the season. If you want something with a colorful leaf, plant kale, and cabbage. They go great with all kinds of fall recipes.
I’ve heard people say that it isn’t worth it to work on their landscape in the fall because the season is so short. It’s a semi-valid point but somewhat shortsighted. Part of your fall landscaping routine should involve preparing your property for the next season. Do this well, and you’ll set your fall garden landscape up for easy beautification in the future.
Many of us inherently think of spring as the time for planting gardens and preparing our landscape for the upcoming season, but much of the groundwork is laid in autumn. Don’t overlook this valuable opportunity to add new plants to the yard.
Fall is a great time to plant perennial flowers that will enhance your landscape next fall. Many plants change colors as the season progresses, and planting them now will ensure that you have some solid, established fall garden plants next season. For example, many varieties of hydrangea change to beautiful fall shades when the days get shorter and the temps drop. Planting them now will ensure you see their fall flowers in all their beautiful colors a year from now.
Adding seasonal color and perennials in autumn is a great excuse to keep up with your gardening duties as the cold air starts to blow in. Many of us quit weeding our gardens in the late summer when the flowers fade and the edibles stop producing, but keeping on top of weeds through the fall will ensure they don’t go to seed, keeping your garden manageable next year. Do yourself a favor and weed your gardens as late into the season as you can.
As long as your grass is still growing, it’s a good idea to stay on top of mowing. When the grass stops growing and goes dormant in late fall, which usually occurs when the daytime temps dip below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, cut it down to around 1.5 inches high. Cutting your lawn short before the winter prevents it from matting and discourages mold growth.
Fall is also the perfect time to overseed your lawn. Sprinkle some grass seed across your lawn in fall, and they’ll have enough time to root and establish before winter, giving you a head start on a beautiful lawn next spring.
If your fall landscaping ideas could be given a boost with a new patio or fire pit, now is the time to install it. Fall is the perfect time to tackle outdoor projects since the weather is cool and dry. This means you are far less likely to deal with weather delays than you would with a spring or summer install, and your dormant lawn is better equipped to deal with the stress placed upon it by heavy machinery and laborers working on your new outdoor space.
While the ideal working conditions are a big advantage to fall installs, the fact that you can use the space first thing after the snow melts means you’ve got a great canvas to work with for the entirety of next season.
For the same reasons that make autumn an ideal time to work on your hardscape projects, fall is a great time to work on any larger fall garden ideas and landscaping projects you’ve been putting off. You’ve got excellent working conditions, but you’ve also got cool nights and warm soil, which means your new bushes, shrubs, and trees can root and grow without added stressors that come along with more extreme seasons.
If you want to get your hardscaping projects in before winter, now is the time to reach out for an estimate. Autumn is generally the start of the slow season for the industry, so you can probably get your fall landscaping ideas finished before the snow flies. You’ve just got to take the first step. Whether you need help with planning or production or both, we’re here to help.
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