Garden Q&A: How to spice up your garden with fall perennials
By Ellen Nibali
For The Baltimore Sun|
Oct 04, 2018 at 9:00 AM
What are some fall perennials to spice up my garden? I love mums, but what else is out there?
Toad lily, for starters. Its speckles vary from bloom to bloom, so plant where you can enjoy its detail up close. More fall bloomers include: turtlehead, asters (a range of bloom times so check), goldenrod, plumbago, obedient plant and Joe-pye weed. Don’t forget fall berries can provide surprising color such as hearts a’bursting and American beautyberry — both of which are native.
My pumpkins aren’t ready for picking. They’re just turning orange. And my sweet potatoes are still in the ground. With all the rain, I’m worried about rotting.
Lift the pumpkins onto a board or crate to keep them off the ground and out of puddles. Dig sweet potatoes before the first frost, disturbing wet soil as little as possible. For future reference: Sweet potatoes don’t stop growing. Check their size when plants reach their “days to harvest” maturity date. Harvest when they reach a desirable size. Humongous ones can crack and attract animals.
University of Maryland Extension’s Home and Garden Information Center offers free gardening and pest information at extension.umd.edu/hgic. Click “Ask Maryland’s Gardening Experts” to send questions and photos.