Fall’s classic bloomer is the garden mum. These colorful beauties paint the autumn landscape in nearly any shade imaginable, from pastel tints to bold hues. Garden mums grow best in full sun with well-drained soil and work well in containers or beds. To enjoy the longest show, choose mums with flower buds that are just beginning to crack open. To overwinter plants as perennials in colder zones, get mums into the ground as early as possible in fall. Mulch well after the ground freezes. Plants grow 1 to 3 feet tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 5-9.
Cool Season Plant Combination
A good planting combination for a fall pot includes ornamental or flowering kale, viola and garden mum.
Fall Garden Design with Mums
Mums are the standard bearer in fall gardens, says landscape designer Jan Johnsen, author of "Heaven is a Garden." Plant them in beds, pots, or mixed with pumpkins, asters, Amaranthus and grasses.
A good planting combination for a fall pot includes pansy, garden mums and ornamental or flowering kale. Other good cool season container plants include ornamental grass and herbs like rosemary (shown) or thyme.
Fall Container Garden
A good planting combination for a fall pot includes ornamental or flowering kale, viola and garden mum. For a thriller with height, tuck in a shrub like Nandina domestica. Buy plants in larger pots with established root systems to ensure best survival.
Fall Pot With Gourds
Set off a fall container garden with an array of colorful pumpkins and gourds. This pot showcases a planting combination that features pansy, ornamental or flowering kale and garden mums. For a thriller plant, purple fountain grass provides good height. A bushy rosemary plant offers a pretty textural contrast and background for the combination. Buy plants in larger pots with established root systems to ensure best survival.
Container Garden With Snow
When early season snow starts to fly, some plants in fall container gardens won’t survive. Ornamental or flowering kale and viola sail through even a dusting of snow. As snow melts, wilted violas bounce right back, while the ornamental kale just keeps looking good. In pots, garden mums and nandina don’t recover from snowfall like this.
Plant Shopping at a Nursery
Josh Swanson is mixing his passions, buying flowers that match the colors of his favorite NFL team, the Minnesota Vikings. He selected yellow mums, and white and purple pansies. Marigolds are the most popular annuals among millennial organic gardeners (24 percent), followed by pansies, geraniums, zinnias and impatiens (13 percent each), according to The Home Depot 2015 Fall Gardening Survey.