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The Benefits of Planting in the Fall

As the days get shorter, nights get longer and air gets cooler, don’t put away your garden tools just yet! Fall is the new spring and is the absolute best time to plant. Here are the top 5 reasons why you don’t want to miss planting in the fall:

  1. First off, there is less stress on your shrub or tree when you plant when the air is cooler, but the soil is still warm from the summer sun (much better than spring, where the ground is still frozen). The plant has a head-start to establish roots for the spring. There’s not as much of a threat of drought with the fall rains and the soil doesn’t dry out as fast. Most pests and weeds that some plants compete with are winding down and become less of a problem.
  2. Secondly, fall is the best time for root development. The plant is getting ready to drop their foliage and focus on root development (probably the most important process for plants that most people overlook). A bigger, stronger root support system underground means bigger, fuller plants above ground in the spring. And planting in the fall gives your plant a head start of just root development and not having to worry about pushing new growth and roots in the spring.
  3. Third, there is less of a need for watering due to the cooler temps. Similarly, the soil doesn’t dry out as fast. Also, the environment gives us more rain, taking the pressure off of you to water! But don’t forget about watering completely: it is still a necessity and should still be monitored closely to ensure the plant gets plenty of water going into the winter months.
  4. Fourth, the fall color on some plants is amazing! As the nutrients start leaving the foliage and head back into the roots, it causes the bright vibrant colors we all know and love in the fall. Not only is the foliage a star; many have berries, flowers and colorful stems that persist into late fall, too! Try some smaller shrubs, such as Hydrangea for flowers, Viburnum, Sweetspire for foliage, Blue Holly and Winterberry for berries, Redtwig and Yellowtwig Dogwood for stem color. Plant in groupings; you won’t be disappointed!
  5. Lastly, if you’re planning on planting a new lawn or reseeding your existing lawn, now’s the best time! There’s less competition from weeds that seem to overtake the spring lawns, and less competition for the water and nutrients. The cooler temps also help to assure the new, tender blades of grass don’t burn up in the sun. Give your lawn a head-start and advantage going into the spring.

Come down to Winterberry Gardens and let us help you choose plants for your fall landscape today!