Fall Planting Shrubs in Iowa

The defining characteristic of a shrub is several woody primary stems, instead of one single trunk like a tree, according to the Iowa's Association of Naturalists. The state of Iowa has natural woodlands that contain a variety of shrubs. Many of the fall shrubs found in Iowa provide berries for wildlife. Some fall planting shrubs are used for cooking and alternative healing.

Hazelnut Shrub

Hazelnut is fall planting shrub found in the eastern section of Iowa. Since the seed is a small nut, it is easily mistaken for a tree. The hazelnut shrub seed is edible before it is mature. Mature nuts are used for a variety of purposes such as oils and as alternative healing agents. Plants for a Future recommends planting the hazelnut seed shortly after it falls to the ground in autumn.

Elderberry Shrub

Elderberry is another shrub found in Iowa. The Plants for a Future recommends sowing seed in a cold frame in autumn. The leaves and stems of the elderberry shrub are toxic. Use care when handling these parts of the shrub. Wear gardening gloves and protective clothing when transplanting elderberry shrubs in the fall. The cooked fruit is edible and used in a variety of dishes, wines and deserts. However, some people do experience digestive sensitivity to the elderberry fruit. According to Iowa's Association of Naturalists, "An identifying characteristic of elderberry is the white pith that is obvious when larger twigs are broken." The average height of this shrub is 4 to 8 feet.

Prickly Ash Shrub

The identifying characteristic of the prickly ash shrub is the small thorns near the leaves and along the branches. This shrub is found in Iowa. All parts of this shrub are edible and are used for various alternative healing remedies. The more common name for the prickly ash shrub is the toothache tree. According to Iowa's Association of Naturalists, the different parts of the prickly ash shrub act as a mild oral anesthetic when chewed. Even with the mild citrus scent, birds and wildlife will not eat this shrub.

Planting Reminders

Make certain to plant seeds or seedling in the ground prior to the first frost for fall planting shrubs in Iowa. Plants for the Future suggests that seeds from the shrubs in Iowa often take several months to germinate. Cover the ground with a layer of coarse organic mulch to insulate the new shrub as it grows.

Keywords: shrubs in Iowa, fall shrubs, growing shrubs

About this Author

Daniel Smith graduated from technical school in 1993 and has been writing since 2005. His has written numerous articles for the instructional website called eHow in areas including gardening, home improvement, celebrating special events and health-related topics.