Happy Fall Planting

Fall is an excellent time to add new energy to your garden. Glove up and dig in.

Living Green

If your summer plantings have been scorched away, think about tackling some fall landscaping. Autumn is one of our favorite times to get our hands dirty. Here are some creative ideas.

Plant evergreen trees and shrubs around the edges of your yard. Evergreen trees and shrubs provide privacy all year long and can offer dramatic height against other plantings. If you've moved into a new home and need greenery sooner than later, plant some fast-growing trees like Leyland Cypress, Cryptomeria, or Blue Spruce. Fast-Growing-Trees offers a nice product selection and is a good resource for research.

Virginia Gardens

The state for lovers boasts some of the nation's most spectacular gardens: Monticello (home of Thomas Jefferson), Berkeley Plantation, and George Washington's Mount Vernon. If you're visiting, check out our new homes in Virginia. They're beautiful, too.

Add groundcover to the mix. Not only does groundcover cut down on weeds, it adds color to your landscape design. If you choose groundcover with color, such as Bunchberry (autumn brings bright red fruits) or Bushy Aster (which produces pinkish daisy-like blooms) you'll make your garden so darn pretty.

Choose shrubs that look good all year. Some ideas include Ninebark (the bark peels in the winter which is cool) and Viburnum (which offers pretty foliage and flowers). Both of these shrubs come in many different varieties—check to see what your local garden center offers or order something fancier online.

Consider dramatic ornamental grasses. Big, sweeping grasses create beautiful texture and movement in the colder months. Think about tall grasses like Plume grass (which grows as high as seven feet), medium grasses like Northern sea oats (which grows up to three feet), and shorter grasses like liriope (which only grows to about one foot).

Accessorize with ornaments. We're not talking garden gnomes, but if that's your thing, who are we to judge? However, we prefer solar border lights to add nighttime elegance, wind spinners for an earthy touch, and wind chimes if you want to get your Zen on.

Pop in some annuals. We like placing fall flowers in containers. Inject some pretty in your pots with aster, mums, and flowering kale. If you're looking for some creative inspiration, use the winning combination of thriller (the colorful main flower that offers a little height), filler (a lower-height plant), and spiller (overflowing vines) in your containers. This trick creates nice balance and shape.

Ryan Homes Tip:If you have deer in your area, check with your local nursery to make sure your choices won't be their favorite snack.