Add Fall Color to Your Landscape

David Marshall
Horticulture Extension Faculty
Leon County

Fall is the culmination of the gardening year. Many flowering plants are at their peak. And it’s time to start planting for the new year.

Clockwise from top left: yellowbells, Tecoma stans, (yellow flowers); Pride of Barbados, Caesalpinia pulcherrima (orange flowers); bush allamanda (yellow flowers); Tibouchina (purple flowers); cape honeysuckle, Tecomaria capensis (orange flowers).

Photo Credits: David Marshall

Pride of Barbados, Caesalpinia pulcherrima, with its orange and yellow flowers is at its peak in the fall garden. Other showy plants in the fall garden are cape honeysuckle, Tecomaria capensis, with its bright orange flowers; Tibouchina (purple flowers); yellowbells, Tecoma stans; and bush allamanda.

Heliconia psittacorum Photo Credits: David Marshall

Various varieties of Heliconia psittacorum have flowered all summer and are still going strong in early fall. Though they will not overwinter here, they are a great choice for a summer annual. Most types prefer bright light but need protection from full sun.

Sky vine (Thunbergia grandiflora) Photo Credits: David Marshall

Sky vine, Thunbergia grandiflora, is at its best in the late summer and fall. The vine dies back in the winter but is still perennial in north Florida. You can plant it now.

Pansies and Chrysocephalum Photo Credits: David Marshall

Other cool season annuals to plant in October are pansies and Chrysocephalum, the taller plant with the grayish foliage and the button-like yellow flowers.

Petunias (in the foreground) and Dianthus (in back). Photo Credits: David Marshall

Fall is the time to plant cool season annuals such as petunias and dianthus. Don’t wait until spring.

Nemesia has also proven to be a wonderful cool-season annual for north Florida. It has a very long flowering period. Plant it late September to October.