rior planning can mean a brightly colored landscape this
fall. Four popular plants are well known for their fall brilliance.
They are the chrysanthemum, candle tree, copper
plant, and Joseph's coat. Each has advantages and distinctions
all its own. All have beauty and eye-pleasing color.
The chrysanthemum, also called a mum, is considered the
queen of fall flowers. The plants, generally from 12 to 24
inches tall, are covered with colorful blooms. They require a
well drained soil with ample water and fertilizer. Tip cuttings
of old plants root very quickly and provide relatively
disease-free plants. Cuttings of 6 to 8 inches, stuck half their
length into sand or a sand and peat mixture will usually root
in 8 to 10 days. Old clumps can also be divided at this time. It
is best to complete transplanting in June or early July. Keep
terminal buds pinched through July to promote side branching.
Garden mums are better for landscape use than florist
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an easy source of fall color
Showy yellow flowers are characteristic of the candle tree.
These fall-blooming plants are best used as backgrounds for
wide flower beds. The plants have attractive foliage over
their height of 4 to 6 feet. Candle trees prefer rich, moist soil,
and should be fertilized each month with a complete fertilizer.
Plants are started from seed in spring.
The copper plant is attractive in summer as well as fall. The
main reason bronze foliage is grown in the fall is because it
combines well with fall flowers. While they can grow much
larger, copper plants normally grow 15 to 30 inches tall in
good soils. New plants are started from cuttings in spring and
Several varieties of Joseph's coat, Alternanthera, are available.
The plant is famous for its colors of red, orange, green,
and yellow. Usually under 15 inches tall, this native of Brazil
is most commonly used as a low-spreading border. Joseph's
coat also flourishes in a moist, well fertilized
soil. Use a complete and balanced
fertilizer. Small plants are available
now, or cuttings may be easily rooted
from larger plants.
Whatever plants you choose, advance
planning is important for an abundance
of color this fall.