Most of the trees have lost their leaves and the landscape is taking on an early winter appearance. However, you can still find lots of fall color!
Right now the prettiest leaves are on the Autumn Gold Ginkgo. Not only does this tree have such an unusual leaf shape – it has outstanding fall color. A buttery yellow that is hard to beat! Another unusual fact on the Ginkgo tree is that it will lose its leaves all at once. I have literally walked past the sales racks with Ginkgo trees in the morning and only to come by again in the afternoon and find all their leaves on the ground!
Thinking outside the box a little when putting plants into your landscape – how about the plants that multi-task? Cherry trees and blueberry plants – wonderful for the fruit they produce but also wonderful in their fall color! The blueberries are in my garden here at the nursery and they absolutely stop you in your tracks when walking past. If you don’t want the blueberries for their fruit – try them in a shrub bed and let the birds have the fruit. Our cherry tree here produced enough cherries this year that I was able to make a couple of pies and some sauce – and now it sports beautiful fall color.
The Grace Smokebush tree and the Armstrong Gold Maple are trees for smaller spaces. The Grace Smokebush tree will reach only 8′-10′ in height and approximately 8′ wide. In the summer it has beautiful light pink blooms that give the appearance of a “puff” of smoke. The leaves during the growing season are a deep purple color. Most plants that have purple leaves during the growing season lack a little in fall color – but not the Smokebush! It turns a beautiful red-orange in color.
The Armstrong Gold Maple – mature height of 40′ with only a width of 12′ will satisfy the needs for a maple tree in a narrow area. These trees have wonderful green leaves in the summer and the fall color is stunning. It turns color a little later in the season so if you sequence the plants in your yard – you could have fall color for two months or more!
Late season planting is very successful. The plants have gone dormant so they will simply be “sleeping” in your yard. Mulching the area around the plant that you have dug up is essential with late season planting. Watering needs are quite low – even though you will still need to do a little watering. And always remember to put on your tree trunk protectors on sensitive trees now – even if you didn’t plant them this year. A young maple tree should have it’s trunk wrapped for 5-6 years until the bark thickens up and gets gnarly looking.