Dress Up Your Landscape With These New Fall Plants

Did you know that fall is one of the best times of the year to introduce new plants to your landscape? 

We paid a visit to some of our friends at Luis’ Nursery where we were reminded of all things Fall. The bright, rich colors and blooms can bring your space to life as we enter into a cooler season. Larry, an expert at Luis’ Nursery on S. Mariposa Ave., said it perfectly during our visit, “Fall is the time you want to get everything in the ground.”

There are several reasons why Fall is the best time to plant.The soil temperatures are still warm, but the air outside is getting cooler. At the same time, weeds are starting to die off, which means that your new plantings will have less competition for survival. Furthermore, there are fewer insects and pests to contend with, and precipitation becomes a little more predictable. When you put all these things together, it’s a recipe for success! Even new gardeners who haven’t yet built their confidence in planting can successfully grow beautiful vegetation in the fall. Here’s a look at some of my favorite new plants to introduce to gardens and landscapes during this lovely season, as well as a few Fall favorites from Luis’ Nursery. Most of these selections can be found locally at Luis’ Nursery in Visalia!

Lavandula 'Meerlo'

Why You’ll Love It

If you want to incorporate a splash of color to your space, you can do so with this variegated lavender. This simple plant will make a huge impact on the curb appeal of your home, and will delight you and your guests with its purple-blue flower spikes. Aromatic lavender is also soothing and calming, making it an ideal choice for your garden terrace or patio. Bonus: You’ll enjoy attracting lots of honeybees, birds and butterflies to your garden. 

Size

Lavandula ‘Meerlo’ plants generally grow to 2′-3′ tall and wide.

Care

These delightful lavender plants are very low maintenance. They have a high drought tolerance and do well in both heat and humidity. Once you establish these plants, they won’t need a whole lot of watering. 

Salvia 'Killer Cranberry'

Image: Doreen Wynja/Monrovia
Why You’ll Love It

If you’re hoping to make a bold statement, this herbaceous perennial is the right choice. It offers vibrant, deep pink blossoms within dense sage shrubbery. It will continue to bloom well into the fall months. Hummingbirds love these plants! 

Size

Salvia typically reaches 3′ in height and width.

Care

Grow in the ground or in a mid-size decorative pot for an extra tough of personality. Salvia thrives in areas with high sunlight and is very drought-tolerant. Make sure the soil is well drained. 

Lagerstroemia 'Plum Magic'

Image: Nature Hills
Image: Nature Hills
Why You’ll Love It

This plant offers a modern, disease-resistant variety of this very popular shrub. It is characterized by bold, exciting plum coloring throughout spring and summer. Its leaves are absolutely lovely even before a bloom, making them decorative and enjoyable year-round.

Size

Plum Magic Crape Myrtles often grow as high as 6′-10′ tall and wide. Be sure to plant them with space. 

Care

These beautiful plants love full sun and require moderate levels of moisture. Surround the plants with mulch for adequate moisture retention. 

Nandina 'Fire Power'

Image: Monrovia
Image: Monrovia
Why You’ll Love It 

When the rest of your garden is dormant, this evergreen shrub will offer intense color. During the fall, it transforms into a brilliant, scarlet beauty that offers fall and holiday colors to your yard.

Size

These shrubs usually grow to about 2′-3′ tall and wide 

Care

Nandina Firepower plants don’t require a whole lot of care and effort. It needs a moderate amount of water to get established (a drip line is great for this), but once it is established, it’s very drought-tolerant.

Lomandra 'Platinum Beauty'

Image: San Marcos Growers
Why You’ll Love It

This is a year-round favorite for hot, dry gardens. It offers the appearance of ornamental grass, but it’s actually a perennial herb, so it doesn’t require cutting back. It has a willowy shape and provides graceful texture and softness to your landscape. 

Size

Lomandras grow to about 3′ tall by 3′ wide

Care

One of the best things about these herbs is that once established, they don’t require much care to maintenance. It can thrive under full sun conditions or even partial shade. Only occasional watering is required.

Sedum 'Autumn Joy'

Image: Monrovia
Why You’ll Love It

A texture-rich, splendidly colored beauty, this upright variety of stonecrop features super fleshy succulent leaves. When the flowers bloom in early fall, they are pink. Soon, however, they change to red before becoming a bronze or rust-red color. This means it continues to delight throughout the year. They make for excellent ground cover, so they not only look fabulous but also serve a functional purpose. 

Size

Sedum plants typically peak at 2′ tall and 3′ wide

Care

These plants are so low maintenance and easy to grow that they’ve been known to naturalize in the wild. It requires full sun, thin soil, and light watering. If watered too much, it will begin to droop.

Hesperaloe parviflora

Image: David Salman/Monrovia
Image: David Salman/Monrovia
Why You’ll Love It

Looking for something tough and hardy? This is it! hesperaloe parviflora is a grasslike plant that is native to Texas and Mexico, but it thrives well here in California. It provides lovely, narrow, linear leaves that are edged with fibrous white strands. Gorgeous red, pink, coral, and yellow flower spikes emerge from the center of the plant. Hummingbirds love it! 

Size

Hesperaloe parviflora can reach 4′-6′ tall and wide

Care

This plant prefers loamy or sandy soil and requires full sunlight in order to thrive. It has very low water needs and thrives well even in drought conditions.

Recommendations by the Team at Luis' Nursery

Pink Muhly

This lush, pink grass is a great Fall addition to any garden. Getting ready to bloom in the next few weeks, this plant will add vibrant plumes of color and texture to your garden
Image by Monrovia

Karl Forester

This grass grows vertical plumes of about 5' tall that add a serene, golden hue to any landscape.
Image by Monrovia

Chinese Pistache

This showy Fall tree is a true staple. With deep orange and red hues that develop in the Fall, this tree provides shade and color to any landscape.
Image by Trong Nguyen