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A garden full of fall colours

Fall colour
Photo: Flickr (Steven Shigeo Yamada)
Autumn foliage
  • Autumn foliage
  • Acer tataricum ssp. ginnala.

For many of us, September means the end of the summer holidays and back to work time. Soon we’ll have to finish harvesting our fruit and vegetable plots and start preparing our gardens for winter.

But that certainly doesn’t mean that we can’t continue enjoying them, as experienced gardeners well know!  

The fall garden

Garden colours change in the fall and take on warmer hues. Perennials, which have been front and centre since the spring, seem to disappear – but in fact they still deserve our attention. With a bit of research and careful planting, you can make the most of the change in colour of certain perennials’ foliage, to get one last burst of beauty from a corner of the garden or a border.

As you start your major clean-up operation in the fall, you’ll be delighted to find that some perennials you thought had already gone to sleep for the winter actually still have their striking bright green foliage. Here we’re thinking of saxifrage (Saxifraga spp. and cultivars), Waldsteinia ternata, Azorella trifurcatus, globularia (Globularia spp.) and arabis (Arabis ferdinandi-coburgi 'Variegata').

If you want to really appreciate your garden in the fall, you have to start thinking about it earlier on, when planning your garden and choose plants that offer fall interest.

As we’ll explain, aside from those plants that bloom in the fall, there are many other types of plants with showy features.

The right combination of plant species and climate conditions that cause the leaves to change colour are the keys to a spectacular fall display.

We’re lucky enough to live in one of the parts of the world that offers these conditions. So why not take advantage of it?


Based on an article by René Giguère and Robert Mineau in Quatre-Temps magazine, Vol. 23, No.1.

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