Temperatures around the country will start coming down, and deep summer greens will give way to brilliant red, orange and yellow. In your garden, however, you can keep the bright blooms of summer going – even to the first frost in some cases – with these versatile and hearty perennials.

Don’t worry if you’ve yet to put any of these in the ground yet. While you’d ideally want to plant in the spring to give the roots time to take hold, it’s probably safe to plant for the next couple of weeks depending on where you live. In the Upper Midwest, for example, the next couple of weeks would be a good deadline, but folks further south probably have another whole month or so of good planting weather.

We suggest you scatter these plants throughout your garden to provide color that draws attention in more than just one location.

6182996688_728bb01419_m1. Chrysanthemum – so many varieties in a rainbow of colors make the mum a favorite in fall gardens. Flowers do appear in the spring so be sure you pinch them off in order for a fall show to appear.




2. Sedum – These fun flowers provide bright green foliage from spring through late Sedum
summer when the heads of plants burst into color. Plants are sturdy and can stand up to a host of weather conditions.




Turtlehead3. Turtlehead – Small blossoms in the shape of, you guessed it, turtles, cluster in pinks and white nearly all season. You can expect turtleheads to bloom up until the first frost.



Toad Lily


4. Toad lily – This is a great addition to the plants in your shade or dappled garden spot. When everything else has bloomed and is starting to wilt, the toad lily opens up and provides a welcome shot of color and interest.


Fall crocus


5. Fall crocus – Cousin to the splashier crocus that blooms in spring, the fall crocus is too often dismissed or not even considered, but it’s cool blue blossoms can provide a nice contrast to the warmer shades typically associated with fall.





6. Aster – Another plant that blooms in spring but will bloom bigger and brighter in fall if you pinch off those first blossoms.






7. Helenium – With red, orange and yellow blossoms that resemble cone flowers, helenium is a member of the sunflower family and cousin to the daisy.





Russian sage8. Russian sage – Silver-ish foliage topped by tiny blue/lavender buds and a wonderful scent plus the ability to flourish in just about any garden location make the Russian sage an easy choice. Branches will begin blooming in early to mid-summer and flowers will stick around well into the fall.




Goldenrod9. Goldenrod – Bright yellow flowers top wispy, dark green foliage to create a welcome spot of color during that in-between phase of summer blooms pulling back and fall flowers not quite there yet.




Leadplant10. Leadplant – This is another shade plant that puts on a show. Lush green leaves make way for bright blue blossoms before the foliage turns a brilliant red.