Fall Color 2017 from Growing The Home Garden

I'm a big fan of foliage! There is no better time of the year than autumn for those who love foliage, and naturally fall is one of my favorite times of the year. I thought I would share with you some photos I have taken over the last month of the foliage from my garden. Tennessee often has amazing fall color and this year was no exception. I hope you enjoy seeing some of the fall color from my garden! Fall Color 2017 While its surroundings are lacking in appeal blueberry bushes always have some beautiful fall foliage. They are worth planting for ornamental value in addition to the edible berries. Fothergilla is an amazing plant for fall color! This Japanese Maple is 'Germaine's Gyration'. I missed the peak color by a day! There are few trees that can rival the fall color of a maple! This self sown maple…

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Husker’s Red Penstemon in the Garden

One of the neatest perennials in our garden is 'Husker's Red' penstemon (Penstemon digitalis).  'Husker's Red' has reddish foliage that adds color to the garden during the growing season but it also blooms prolifically for several weeks in the spring.  Ours are just now starting to fade so I thought I would take a picture to share with you.  The bees love the bell like flowers that cover the plant! 'Husker's Red' was named a Perennial Plant Association Plant of the Year back in 1996 for good reason. It's easy to care for and very attractive in the garden.  Our penstemon is in several locations easily accessible to deer and rabbits and haven't had any issues with the hungry animals. This penstemon grows between 2-3 feet tall and has a nice mounding habit.  It doesn't spread very much but you can help that along very easily with the propagation technique…

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5 Fun Foliage Plants! (Friday Fives)

Let's be real, foliage is more important than flowers!  Foliage is there 3 out of the four seasons and unless you have some fantastic re-blooming plant that blooms incessantly from spouting to leaf drop you aren't going to have something interesting all the time - unless you plant with foliage.  Color, leaf texture, leaf shape, and leaf size all make foliage plants focal points in the garden that draw the eye even when there isn't a flower to be seen!  Below is a list of 5 plants that I plant for foliage reasons.  Some have other attributes as well and some are quite common but are well worth planting in your garden. 5 Fun Foliage Plants! 'Powis Castle' Artemisia Alphabetically for this list we'll start off with artemisia!  Its common name would put it at the end of the alphabet: wormwood.  Not a very pleasant name to me so we'll…

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Japanese Maple on Fire!

Of all the fall colors I've seen this year the Japanese maples seem to have topped all other trees.  This Japanese maple at my mom's house was figuratively on fire with red foliage lighting up the scenery.  I didn't have my camera with me when it was at its peak but even past peak it's beauty can still be seen. When bare this Japanese maple (possibly a 'Bloodgood') has a cool vase shaped form.   I've always enjoyed seeing pictures of falling leaves making a carpet of foliage on the garden grounds. This maple is the mother plant of the Japanese maple I planted for dad.  Together with another Japanese maple I planted earlier in the summer (which is also from the same tree) it should one day provide a spectacular fall show. Japanese maples may take some time to grow but the wait is worth it! 

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Pineapple Sage – Still Not Blooming!

This spring I bought this pineapple sage at a garden show fully expecting it to thrive and burst into colorful red blooms. Well I can say one thing, it is thriving!  For some reason the blooms are just now beginning to form despite it growing to a size of about three and a half feet round.  It has nearly overtaken the 'Little Giant' arborvitae planted next door. The blooms that are forming should begin to put on their show within the next week but I could have sworn that my pineapple sage from last year bloomed much earlier! In other blooming news my Gossypium herbaceum 'Nigrum' is in bloom, that would be cotton.  I mentioned this cotton on the Facebook page last night.  It's gorgeous blooms would be much better displayed if planted enmass in a better location. I'll blame the local gardener for that. He's always sticking stuff in…

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It’s Not Time To Pick Cotton Yet!

Before reading a certain garden blogger's post I had never heard of a cotton plant with dark foliage (Gossypium herbaceum 'Nigra'). Then this spring Nancy Ondra of Hayefield emailed me and asked if I would like to try some seeds. Me being the seed collecting addict I am I said of course! She also sent along some seeds for an ornamental corn called 'Tiger Cub' and a rice called 'Red Dragon'.  All of these plants were fantastic, interesting, and not yet in my garden. So far of the three types of seeds she sent the cotton has done the best. The rice requires more water than my garden can offer - in an ideal garden it really needs a naturally damp location. I do have a surviving rice plant but it isn't as happy as I'd like it to be. The corn has pretty well too and is growing cobs…

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My Overwintering Coleus

'Henna' Coleus When the outside temperatures began to drop in the fall I knew there were a few tender plants that I wanted to preserve for next year like my coleus. I brought 2 varieties of coleus indoors in the hopes of planting them again in the Spring of 2011 and both are doing good! I put the pot near a sunny southern window and one of them is thriving while the other is just getting by - but that's good enough to get it through the winter. The thriving coleus is 'Henna' which has some really nice foliage. The underside of the leaves is a deep red color while the top side of each leaf right now is a shade of green When it receives more sunlight during the growing season the top side of each leaf gains a more reddish coloration. 'Alabama Sunset' Coleus The other coleus I'm…

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Seeing Red

The foliage is still there on some if the trees and shrubs in our garden and is fading fast. Most of what remains now has a reddish hue in the leaves but in some cases what remains isn't just the leaves. The 'Shasta' viburnum is showing red in the last few of it's remaining leaves. In my garden it's the first viburnum to drop leaves, the Burkwood and arrowwood viburnums still haven't begun their color changes yet while the snowball viburnum is completely naked. Another shot of the 'Shasta'. Here the 'Constellation' dogwood's mottled foliage shows some red hues also. The brown tips are evidence of the dryness we had this summer. I'm still waiting to see that "perfect" gardening season! This dogwood leaf is on a tree along the back fence line from a Cornus florida dogwood. It blooms white when it blooms. Before too long I need to…

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2009 Fall Color Project Wrap-up

As the official date of the beginning of winter is almost upon us it's time to say farewell to fall! What better way to say good bye to the fall of 2009 than by taking a look back at all the wonderful posts that our fellow bloggers have written about fall foliage. The weather was an issue for many who participated in the project with its effects either improving the colors or completely confusing the colors! Whatever the case, the Fall Color Project participants did a fantastic job of showing off the fall foliage around them. Let's take one more look back to see what Autumn 2009 was all about. (Please note that all the text below is from the original summaries of the individual fall color posts. I'm happy to add anyone who may have missed the 2009 Fall Color Project at any point in the future. Just take…

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Persian Shield Propagation (Strobinlanthus dyerianus)

Before the first frost of the fall I took a few cuttings of my Persian Shield (Strobinlanthus dyerianus) to hopefully overwinter it as a houseplant. This was the first year for Persian Shield in my garden and I've only seen it at one nursery around so I wanted to be sure I had some for next year in the garden. Saving a little cash while getting more plants is a pretty nice side effect! It's a very cool plant with it's almost metallic sheen that reflects a mixture of purple and silvery hues in the light. It likes the shade but did very well in a part sun area in my garden. I took as many stem tip cuttings as I could to increase my odds of getting a rooted cutting but really this was so easy I probably didn't need to take any more than 5-6. I ended up…

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