Fall & Winter Flowers

The dawning of autumn and the coming of winter is the time of year when the colorful flowers of warmer seasons are sorely missed. Extend your landscape's blooming season by incorporating fall and winter flowers into your landscape design.

European Water Plantain

A perennial forb of the Alismataceae or water-plantain family, European water plantain (Alisma plantago-aquatica L.) is an imported flowering plant species from Europe and Asia (Eurasia) that grows in Alaska and Washington State. Its white flowers bloom in the fall after its active growth period from spring through fall. The plant itself grows in an erect form to 3 feet in height in full sun and moist soil--typically wet locations--and it can tolerate temperatures as low as negative 33 degrees F. European water plantain is also known as Eurasian water plantain.

Purplestem Aster

A perennial forb of the Asteraceae (aster or daisy) family, purplestem aster (Symphyotrichum puniceum) is native to most of Canada and the eastern half of North America, including the French territories south of Newfoundland--St. Pierre and Miquelon. Purplestem aster actively grows from spring through fall, reaching heights up to 8 feet tall. Its blue flowers bloom in the fall, from August through October, which is also when it produces its seeds. This flower grows in full sun and moist soil, and can survive temperatures as low as negative 35 degrees F. It is also known as bristly aster and swamp aster, and by the botanical name, Aster puniceus L.

Disk Waterhyssop

Native to most of the United States--excluding several states in its eastern and western regions--as well as Alberta, Canada, disk waterhyssop (Bacopa rotundifolia) is a low-growing, flowering perennial forb that actively grows from spring through fall. A member of the Scrophulariaceae, or snapdragon family, its white flowers bloom in the fall, followed by its seed production. Disk waterhyssop can tolerate temperatures as low as negative 33 degrees F, but does well in full sun and moist soil. According to the USDA, disc waterhyssop has an endangered status in Indiana.

Bigelow's Tansyaster

Bigelow's tansyaster (Machaeranthera bigelovii) is a biennial or perennial forb of the Asteraceae (aster or daisy) family. It is native to Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico and Oklahoma. Bigelow's tansyaster is a rapidly growing, flowering plant that actively grows in the spring-through-summer seasons, reaching up to 4 feet in height. Its vibrant purple flowers bloom through the fall, when its seeds form. Bigelow's tansyaster thrives in full sun, moist to semi-dry soils and a minimum temperature of 32 degrees F. A large grouping of this flowering plant creates a colorful fall display. It is also known as tansy aster and is synonymous with Machaeranthera mucronata and Dieteria bigelovii.

Keywords: fall flowers, winter flowers, fall landscaping

About this Author

Naima Manal’s articles on health, diet, nutrition, alternative medicine, education, parenting, crafts, travel, home and garden and home improvement have appeared on eHow, Garden Guides, Trails, ConnectED, Helium and others. Manal received her B.S. degree in biology/pre-medical studies from Molloy College in 1994 and has been a freelance writer, teacher and homeschooling mom since 1993.