I feel like I’m treading on slippery ground here with today’s article. I mean, come on, everybody knows spring is the normal planting time for perennials, and here I am wanting to give you 5 reasons to plant those perennials this coming fall instead. But before you think about skipping this article, remember we’ve become friends (sorta like DIY buddies) for the past couple of months now. And buddies listen to one another, even when they feel this friend, in particular, is spouting nonsense.
And, I AM NOT. Truly! Just give me some minutes of your time and I would gladly tell you why you shouldn’t wait till spring before planting your perennials. Not to brag, but you definitely would be more than convinced when I’m done. Ready? Here we go…
- Overflowing abundance of time
Okay, fine, I admit it, maybe this header was a bit of an exaggeration. But seriously, let’s think about it. Autumn is a season to relax and enjoy the beautiful bold colors of nature. No one rushes in fall, at least I know I don’t. So, there’s like super-enough time to spend quality time in your garden, loving those plants. I mean, compared to spring, where everyone’s rushing around wanting to complete so much in so little time. By doing most of your prepping and gardening in fall, you free up some time to take a much-needed breather in spring.
Plus, when there is nothing but time, you tend to be more creative and open to excellent design ideas and improvements in your garden. You know, frankly, I feel I should just stop at this point. This reason is enough to change your mindset about fall planting. Hmmm….not yet convinced about perennial planting in fall? Alright. Next!
- Soil and weather conditions are just perfect
How so? Spring comes after winter, and so during the first few weeks, the soil and air are usually cold. As the season moves forward, the temperature increases, sometimes to unbearably hot levels. Basically, spring temperatures are inconsistent. Fall on the other hand is a bit more stable with its predictable weather conditions.
The first few weeks of fall, the soil and air are warm. Since warm soil enhances root development, this is the right time to plant your perennials. When winter comes around, only the foliage is affected, as the ground still remains warm for those first few weeks. This gives the roots even more time to fully develop, and a strong root system equals a healthier and stronger plant.
- The plants get extra time too!
Think of the pressure these plants face. I mean, they either develop right or someone’s not gonna be happy with them. That’s a lot of responsibility in such a short time, especially if they are planted in spring. But once you plant them in the fall, they have enough time to fully develop. The weather and soil conditions of autumn help them in developing a very strong root system, and come blooming time, they would definitely live up to your expectations!
- Now it’s the time to get them cheap
When spring approaches, the price of seeds and seedlings “skyrocket”. Planting in fall helps save some needed cash, as you can get these plants at a much lower price. In addition, some stores and nurseries offer amazing discounts to buyers, especially when they need to clear out those plants that didn’t get sold during summer.
- Make your garden look beautiful
The earlier you start planting in fall, the better. For one, it gives your crops a full month to develop their roots and build a strong anchor for the approaching frost. And secondly, you get to see your garden bloom with colors in fall. By planting early, you can add beautiful splashes of color to your garden, as the warmth slowly makes way for snow.
So, I’m guessing if you were skeptical or even cynical about the perennials-fall-planting business at first, you’re beginning to have a change of heart. If so, I’m glad. Because planting in fall is a win–win for both you and your plants.
Don’t wait for spring, start planting now for a much more bountiful harvest! Remember to water well and mulch the ground once winter hits, and come spring, you would have a grin as wide as that of the Cheshire cat.