More Than Just Mums

SUNFLOWERS-mainChrysanthemums dominate the autumn landscape but they certainly don’t define the season for us. Designers of all stripes look for variety, whether they are landscapers with commercial contracts, retailers offering an attractive autumn bench, or homeowners who decorate for the harvest holidays. With that in mind, let’s walk past our vast array of mums and take a look at some of the alternative material we offer to provide fall color and flair.

LEADWORT in 4.5-inch pots


This multi-purpose plant should be part of any designer’s tool kit to add clear blue accents in the fall. It happens to be a very hardy perennial here, so Leadwort works well as a sprawling groundcover. Foliage is semi-evergreen, so plants will provide winter cover until the hard cold arrives.

Because of its blue flower, you will find Leadwort used as an annual in window boxes or larger pots. Its open habit plays well with others in a combo, and the plant is sturdy enough to support taller thrillers that sometimes need a little boost at the base.

SUNFLOWERS in 8-inch


Sunflowers, especially those with bigger flower heads, bridge the late summer and early autumn months. Seed heads that form in later months are harvest-time symbols that add to the seasonal decor. ‘Firecracker’ stands out because it features autumn oranges and reds in the petals.

We’ve opened a fresh lot of Sunflowers this week, so we have new autumn varieties to add to the classics: ‘Solita’, ‘Choco Sun’, ‘Pacino Lemon’ and ‘Miss Sunshine’ join reader favorites like ‘Firecracker’ and ‘Ballad’.

PENNISETUM in 1-gallon and 4.5-inch


Fountain grasses like the warm weather—they bulk up over the summer and then provide a showy display of tassels over a vase-like cascade of leaves. Left in the open sun, leaves turn dark chocolate (‘Princess’), deep burgundy (rubrum) or bright cherry red (‘Fireworks’). They are extremely popular in combos and fall containers, so we offer them in both large and small sizes to suit the scope of your project.

OSTEOSPERMUM in 4.5-inch


Considered an early spring crop, Osteo works in the cool fall weather as well. We have three colors to offer: yellow, purple and orange. Our crop is just opening its flowers now, right in the midst of the full heat. Flowers will get even bigger during the warm days of Indian summer—the long stretch of comfortable weather will extend their blooming season.

CALIBRACHOA in 4.5-inch and 10-inch hanging baskets


Another crop that thrives during Indian summer is Calibrachoa. We offer it in nine different shades, plus we planted some in autumn hanging baskets. Our crop is simply loaded with color right now and the timing is right—it’s a well-known staple of both combinations and monochromatic containers, so we have a wide selection to choose from for harvest baskets and planters.

ZINNIA in 8-inch and 4.5-inch pots


When it comes to autumn color, Zinnia’s nailed it with apple reds, pumpkin oranges and squash-like yellows. Plants also feature large flower disks to display those bold colors. Mix some into harvest and holiday gardens and watch how people react to the show. We offer both single and double varieties of Zinnia.

SNAPDRAGONS in 4.5-inch


Our Snapdragons come in six different colors, including two bicolors of red and orange. These are short Montego dwarf Snapdragons with big blooms. They have colored up well and have sturdy stems to support the flowers.

Many more colors and cultivars are shipping this week—these varieties happened to stand out as we’ve been loading up the carts. More lots are opening up next week as well, so there will be an even wider range of colors and sizes available.