8 Fall Perennials To Plant Before the First Frost

Spring gets all the attention for bringing new blooms and fresh leaves into the world after a long, cold winter. But fall is a great time to get new plants into the ground. Perennials in particular will benefit from time spent in cool soil before the warmth of spring and summer, says Rebecca Sears, chief gardener at garden company Ferry-Morse.

“While many think the gardening season is over come fall, there is more work to be done that can increase your harvest and better prepare your garden for next year,” says Sears. “To ensure successful blooms next season, it’s wise to plant perennial flowers now so they can establish their roots before frost.”

Planting perennials that come back year after year makes your garden healthier over time.

“One of the greatest benefits of growing perennials is that they live for several years, saving you time at the start of each gardening season,” says Sears. “Since the life cycle of perennials is several years, they’re more resilient, develop stronger root systems, better the soil they inhabit, and promote healthy conditions for the plants around them.”

When planting this late in the year, you can plant seeds, bulbs, roots, or full plants. “Planting perennials in the fall as baby plants, such as the FerryMorse Fall Plantlings, allows you to enjoy them during the fall season and give them time to establish their root system before the winter months,” says Sears. The key is to plant before the first frost and ensure that what you’re planting can survive in your region by checking the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map. “Be sure to consult the map to find out what zone you are in and review the zone information on the seed packet, label, or website if buying online,” says Sears.

8 fall perennials

Violet Ranunculus bulbs, fall perennials

Violet Ranunculus bulbs — $40 to $120

Ranunculus loves an area with full sun and the bulbs perform great when planted during the fall growing season in zones 8 through 12. If you live in another zone, you can begin to grow your bulbs inside and plant them in the spring. These bulbs will ship in October.

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