Which Fall Flowers Should I Choose for My Landscape? - Ask BrightView


Ask BrightView: Episode 15

Are you looking to add some color to your landscape this fall and don't know where to start? BrightView Horticulturist Bruce Hellerick explains the benefits of chrysanthemums, pansies, and violas; how to choose the right flower; and how to plant them for maximum color.

(For the full transcript, see below.)

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Video Transcription

Which fall flowers should I choose for my landscape?


In the fall, there are a lot of different options to use. Traditionally, people use mums to decorate, but what are becoming much more popular are the pansies and violas.

Pansies and Violas

Pansies and violas are both considered half-hardy perennials, so they will survive the winter. In the north, we would plant them in September or October and they will then overwinter and come back in the springtime. In the south, you would plant them in the fall and they will bloom all fall, all winter, and even into the springtime so you will have a great show of flowers all year long. The benefit is that you are getting a lot of value for your money in terms of flower production.


Chrysanthemums are a traditional fall flower that everyone loves to plant. To select your mums, you really want to select them for the event that you are doing. If you are doing a big event, such as a party, you want to have mums that are fully opened. If you are planting them in your garden, you should go with ones that are cracking color or somewhat open. In this particular case, this is called cracking color and the one over here is about 25-percent open. Both of these would be great for a garden. The breeders have done a great job of breeding them to produce lots and lots of smaller- to medium-sized flowers versus lots of big flowers. In this case, these are called Belgian mums and they are going to give you lots of flowers. They have also bred them to ship and grow easily. I'm going to show you something - they are really crush-proof, so you can literally push this plant in and it's not going to break, which is great.

When it comes to planting, you don't just want to plop the plant in the ground. The outside row of chrysanthemums should be tipped on a 45-degree angle to show off the flowers. The other plants on the inside of the bed will be flat. This will give you a beautiful cushion effect for your whole flower bed.