Fall brings about changes in the weather that affect you garden and flower beds. Days become shorter, nights become colder and many of your favorite blooms begin to fade or die. Luckily, there are a few hardy flowers that flourish in the crisp, autumn weather. Include these durable plants in your garden and you will enjoy their colorful flowers well into the early months of fall.
Seeing orange and yellow chrysanthemum (Dendranthema) and pumpkins displayed around town is a sure sign that the fall season is in full swing. Chrysanthemums come in a wide variety colors that range from soft creamy whites to bright yellows, dark oranges and deep rich burgundies. Early bloomers start flowering in the first weeks of September, late bloomers don't begin to blossom late October. Chrysanthemums thrive in well-drained soil and full sun conditions. Plants grow to be between 12 and 18 inches tall and have a dark green foliage. Use chrysanthemums in pots, plant them in gardens and use them as border plants.
The violet-purple flowers of the aster (Aster anomalus) will add color to your garden from July until November. Asters are adaptable to a variety of growing conditions and are found blooming in rocky wooded areas and in thickets. The plant prefers dry to medium, well-drained soil and thrives in full sun exposure but tolerates shaded areas and drought conditions well. Asters reach 2 1/2 to 3 feet in height and will spread 2 to 2 1/2 feet. Foliage is dark green in color and flowers are daisy-shaped, 1/2 inch in diameter and have yellow centers that accent their purple color. Plant asters in gardens and enjoy watching butterflies visit; asters are one of their favorite flowers.
The easy to grow autumn crocus blooms (Colichicum) in September and October. This bulb plant thrives when planted in full to partial shade and in average, well-drained soil conditions. Foliage appears in the spring and gradually turns yellow and dies by summer, plants become dormant until September when the flower blooms. Stems of the flower will rise from the ground and are 6 to 10 inches tall and bear a star-shaped blossom that is pink to purple-pink in color. Plant autumn crocus in flowerbeds or along patios and walkways.
Solidago Wichita Mountains
The Goldenrod (Solidago) cultivar Wichita Mountains blooms in September and October. Plants have medium green, narrow leaves, reach heights between 2 and 3 feet and have a spread of 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 feet. The yellow, daisy-like flowers grow in clumps on a rod that is often a foot long. Goldenrod requires full sun and thrives in dry to medium-dry well drained soil. The plant is most often found in meadows and fields but can be used in cottage gardens and as borders. Wrongfully accused of causing hay fever, goldenrod attracts bees and butterflies to your garden.