Fall Planting Guide With Images (15)



Daylilies (below left) can be planted almost any time soil can be worked but August and September are particularly good times as plants are partially dormant. Prepare the soil carefully as plants remain in a position for many years. Spread roots out and plant so that crown is just at, or slightly below, the soil surface. Mulch the first winter.

Daylilies and Naturalizing BulbsPin

Naturalizing Bulbs

Naturalizing bulbs (above right) in open woods or in lawns produces a charming, informal effect. To achieve a natural formation, scatter a dozen or more bulbs in one area; plant where they fall. Avoid planting in dense shade. Use one kind to a grouping. Select narcissus, tulip species, crocus, scilla, and muscari.

Dwarf Fruit Trees

Dwarf fruit trees (below left) which are grafted or budded (most of them are) should be planted with the graft union 3″ to 4″ inches above the soil. This prevents roots forming from the portion above the graft which would nullify the effect of the dwarfing understock. Late fall is a good time to start your orchard.

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Pansy Plants

Pansy plants (above right) set out in the fall produce the finest flowers next spring. If you failed to sow seed in August you can purchase plants from pansy specialists now. Cost is less than baskets of flowering plants in spring. Groups of one color are very effective. Mulch plants over winter.


Shrubs (below left) remain in original locations many years so prepare soil well prior to planting. Dig hole larger and deeper than spread of roots. Incorporate organic matter and fertilizer with soil. Plant at depth previously grown (mark on stems usually evident); firm soil about roots; water.

shrubs and strawberriesPin


Strawberries (above right) must be planted at the proper depth to ensure success. Crown of the plant (where roots join stems) should be at the soil surface, not above or below. Firm soil, water thoroughly. After the ground freezes mulch plants with straw. Allow twenty-five plants for each person.

Oriental Poppies

Oriental poppies (below left) are best planted in August and September when they are dormant. When received they may have few or no leaves. Set so that crown of the plant (area between leaves and root) is 2” inches below the soil surface. Leaves will appear above ground before winter. Winter protect with straw under leaves.

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Young Evergreens

Young evergreens (above right) (an inexpensive way to obtain plants) can be grown in the home nursery until large enough to place in permanent locations. If soil is light and friable, they can be set with little effort. Rock trowel back and forth in the soil to form a hole, insert plant, push back soil, firm, and water well. Protect the first winter.


Lilies (below left) are planted from September to December with exception of the Madonna lily which is planted in August. Soil should be well-drained, in sun or part shade. A depth of 8” inches is a good average for most varieties, with the exception of Madonna which is planted with but 1-1/2″ – 2″ inches of soil over the top of the bulb. Mulch.

planting Lilies and irisPin


Iris (above right) are planted with rhizome at, or slightly above, the soil surface. To simplify planting form a cone of soil in the center of the hole. Place the rhizome on this and spread lateral roots. Fill back soil, firm, and water. Label with a permanent marker. To prevent heaving in a cold climate, mulch with straw or oak leaves.

Tulips and Narcissus

Tulips and narcissus (below left) are most effective when planted in groups of six or more bulbs. Prepare soil to a depth of 10″ inches and plant bulbs 6″-10″ inches deep. Deep planting helps to avoid injury to bulbs next summer when setting out annual plants after bulbs have finished flowering. Label varieties.

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Grass Seed

Grass seed (above right) grows well during the cool fall days and meets little competition from germinating weed seeds. When making a new lawn, obtain and follow recommendations for soil preparation and fertilizing. Use only the best seed as cheap mixtures are false economy. After seeding, water regularly.


Trees (below left) are planted for permanence so they merit special attention. Be generous with the hole you dig, making twice diameter of root ball. Add organic matter and fertilizer to soil. Set at depth previously planted, fill in soil, firm and water copiously. Brace to prevent wind damage.



Lily-of-the-valley (above right) can be tucked into many places, and tolerates sun or shade. Plants, called “pips/’ are set with 2 inches of soil over tops. Stems will be longer, flowers larger if a manure mulch is placed over plants in winter or use organic fertilizer. Plants make a good ground cover.

planting rosesPin


Roses (above) grow best in a sunny location. Prepare soil according to recommendations. Set the plant so graft or bud union (swollen part of stem) is about 2″ inches below the soil surface. Spread roots, add soil, firm, water well. In cold regions, mound soil over canes in fall after hard frosts.