No one wants to say goodbye to summer flowers and brilliant color, but alas, fall is here. Fall foliage is great, and I love the brilliant burst of yellow, gold and red as much as anyone, but color is my middle name -- the brighter the better. But with all the pumpkins and scarecrows crowding their way onto my doorstep, what's a gal to do?
Fight every squash vine and straw bale she can with the power of pinch.
You bet. Pinch, as in pinch back those faded and dying blooms on your summer favorites, like Guinea Impatiens, geraniums, begonias and petunias. It will encourage the growth of new blooms and prolong their beauty.
Get as close to the stem as possible and pinch the old, making way for the new. If you do, these beauties will survive until the first killing frost. They're sensitive that way, some more than other.
Another idea to consider as fall rolls around is one of my favorite concepts: edible landscaping. Ornamental kale, cabbages (both classic green and gorgeous red) will provide your landscape with wonderful color and texture well after the frosty weather arrives. Makes for a gorgeous border around sidewalks and front patios.
Of course, there are a number of other possibilities for fall flowers. Adding those hardy mums is one of the most common choices, but check out the black-eyed susans, sedum, aster daisy and chelone, to name a few.
They all work well as fall arrives. And while you're perusing your local garden store, head back to clearance shelves. Nursing dismissed annuals back to health will not only enhance your fall landscape with a last whip of color, but it will do so without breaking the budget. Just keep in mind, their visit will be brief, but stunning.
Fall doesn't have to be all about leaves and pumpkins. It can be that last breath of summer color you need before holing away for the long gray winter ahead.
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