Color in November: You Can Grow That!

I doubt we were the only scofflaws during the government shutdown. Yes, we walked on a beach that is considered federal land when our government figuratively closed its doors. They hadn't considered the fringes, the transition space between public and private, state or municipal property. And like the government shut-down that couldn't really be considered an all-out shut-da-door to parks, plants don't suddenly go dormant on October 15 (or whatever your first frost date is).

There are the "fringe" plants--those that shrug off each subsequent frost episode with panache. Sure, their panache falters eventually, but that too happens gradually.

Roses are wonderful fringe plants, and if the buds show color toward the middle of October, there is a good chance they'll open. 

The absolute latest bloom comes in the form of Korean chrysanthemum, or Dendranthema zawadskii ' 'Clara Curtis', a perky pale peach daisy that benefits from pinching or outright cutting back until the 4th of July.
Not really a bloom but a berry-like hip, the First Edition Series of Hypericum by Plants Nouveau, is still putting on a show, albeit somewhat limited at this juncture. Hypericum is a plant used by florists to punch up a bouquet, and I love it for the same purpose. I cut it back to the ground in spring and it grows to about 2 and a half feet tall and wide. Its yellow flowers are short-lived but the hips are more interesting and last at least a week.
As slowly as the flowers fade, colors form gradually on the leaves of a surprising number of plants. I was surprised to see the gorgeous golden-coral of Magnolia 'Butterflies'. 
Magnolia 'Butterflies' boasts fall foliage as colorful of its spring flowers.
Hydrangea 'Pinky Winky'
The Amsonia hubrechtii, a native perennial with delicate foliage, has yet to turn completely gold as it does each year, but I love how the flowers of Hydrangea 'Pinky Winky' transition each day to a deeper pink as its leaves change to yellow.

These are just a portion of the plants that color my world in November. Inject some color into your fall garden. Come on, you can grow that!

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