Autumn Gardening Planner

Time to spruce up your garden and take care of these fall gardening chores to help make next growing season a bit easier.

Fall Container Plant

Fall Container Plant

Trade out your tired patio tomatoes and peppers for cool season spinach, lettuces, kale and parsley. Mix them with pansies for an edible fall container planting, says Cameron Watkins of C. Watkins Garden Co.

Photo by: Cameron Watkins

Cameron Watkins

Trade out your tired patio tomatoes and peppers for cool season spinach, lettuces, kale and parsley. Mix them with pansies for an edible fall container planting, says Cameron Watkins of C. Watkins Garden Co.

Related To:

Early Fall

  • Prepare beds for spring planting.
  • Plant spring bulbs, except tulips, in beds and lawns.
  • Plant containers and baskets for winter color.
  • Take hardwood cuttings.
  • Sow sweet peas for an early display the following year.
  • Plant wallflowers for spring color.
  • Bring houseplants back indoors, checking for pests and diseases first.
  • Protect slightly tender exotics from frost by wrapping in fleece.
  • Cover slightly tender perennials with a thick mulch of straw or bark chippings.
  • Move tender dahlia tubers and cannas inside.
  • Turf or sow lawns.
  • Apply a fall lawn fertilizer to established lawns.
  • Lay chamomile lawns.
  • Make a woodpile shelter for wildlife.
  • Prune hedges for the last time.

Ideas for Fall Container Gardens

See All Photos

Autumn Upcycle

Orange and yellow marigolds, which thrive in late summer to early fall, find a charming home in this rusty old wheelbarrow. To ensure colorful blooms all season long, swap out marigolds in mid-fall for plants that are more cold-weather friendly, such as mums or pansies.

Photo By: DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Sweet + Simple

Mounds of purple pansies and trailing English ivy add a lovely touch of autumn color to this rustic wood window box.

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Getty Images

Take a Seat

An antique white chair provides a stunning backdrop for a swoon-worthy vignette of cream-colored pumpkins and mums.

Photo By: Stephanie Frey

Make an Entrance

Brighten up your shady front porch with high-gloss black planters filled with tall evergreens, trailing ivy and fuschia calibrachoa.

Photo By: Jennifer Boomer/Getty Images

50 Degrees or Above

This moody floral combo shows off a mix of begonia, sweet potato vine, wishbone flower and coleus — a summer to early fall stunner that thrives in temps above 50 degrees farenheit.

Photo By: Photo courtesy of Proven Winners

Darling Dahlias

Nothing says 'fall' quite like containers filled with eye-catching peach dahlias.

Farmhouse Style, Fast

Give your container garden or front entrance a quick, inexpensive farmhouse-inspired makeover by nestling plain flower containers into upcycled wood crates.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Full Sun, Fall Hues

This warm-hued container is overflowing with Timeless-Fire geranium, ColorBlaze Kingswood Torch coleus and Superbells Dreamsicle calibrachoa — sun-worshipping blooms that will last until first frost.

Photo By: Proven Winners at

Fall Favorites

A pretty evergreen shrub shares center stage with cabbage, kale, pansies, dusty miller and coral bells in this simple yet gorgeous fall urn.

Garden Accessories

As summer is winding down and garden pots are vacated, stack them up and use them as sculptural accessories. They can be strikingly beautiful, even empty. You could tuck a pinecone, mini pumpkin or gourd inside as well. Get more fall porch decorating ideas >>

Window Box Stars

Nothing ups the fall curb appeal quite like window boxes filled with lush, colorful blooms. Fixer Upper's Joanna Gaines filled this client's planter with soft-hued fall favorites like dusty miller, ornamental kale, cabbage, pansies and English ivy.

Mod Thrillers

If you prefer the modern look, go all out with tall, dramatic grasses and trailing fall foliage displayed in sculptural metal containers.

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Until First Frost

Many popular summer blooms can pull double duty in fall containers. This gorgeous hanging bakset, filled with dichondra 'Silver Falls,' 'Blue A Fuse' petunias and 'Breathless White' Euphorbia, will stay full and pretty until first frost.

Photo By: W. Atlee Burpee & Co.

Pumpkin Planters

Gray heirloom pumpkins, hollowed out to make room for a cornucopia of colorful succulents, can last weeks or even over a month in cooler outdoor temps. When your gourd starts to rot, however, simply transfer succulents inside where they'll thrive until spring.

Photo By: Photo by Ben Rollins

First Impressions

You can't go wrong with classic white and green blooms artfully arranged in high-end lattice-work planters. Pro tip: if your shady front porch isn't flower-friendly, pair low-maintenance shade plants like evergreen shrubs and English ivy with a handful of faux blooms that will stay gorgeous all season long.

From: Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines
  1. craftsman style

Photo By: Rachel Whyte

Cottage Charmer

Bursting with sage, million bells and dainty wire vine, this sweet window box lends a welcoming feel to a bucolic exterior.

Photo By: Image courtesy of

DIY Design

Up your fall curb appeal with a DIY house number planter painted a fashion-forward cranberry hue and filled with vibrant autumn blooms. Get the step-by-step instructions >>

Autumn Drama

Add a touch of dramatic flair to your fall containers by arranging low-lying blooms around tall focal point plants like these purple-tinted cordylines.

©2008, Dorling Kindersley Limited


Craft a gorgeous fall topiary that will last all season long, zero maintenance required. Get the step-by-step instructions >>

Photo By: Susan Teare ©Susan Teare

Pumpkin Patch Charmer

Bring the charm of hayfields and pumpkin patches home by filling your front porch containers with gold Marguerite daisy, Superbells Yellow Chiffon calibrachoa, Dolce 'Blackberry Ice' coral bells and creeping wire vine.

Photo By: Proven Winners at

Cold Shoulder

Keep your garden blooming well into late fall with a hanging basket filled with cold-weather stunners such as cyclamens, winter-flowering violas and several types of evergreens.

Photo By: DK - How to Grow Practically Everything © 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Cozy Container

Give your front porch a shot of farmhouse style by filling rustic wicker baskets with sweet seasonal blooms.

Simply Stunning

Sometimes a single bloom can make a huge statement, like the lush white and purple pansies in this colorful window display.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Beautiful Boxwood

Visually stunning and easy to maintain, a clipped boxwood topiary and fluffy lime green sedum make for a perfect pair in any container garden.

Photo By: Image courtesy of Alex Smith Garden Design, Ltd.,

Silver Stunner

Give your garden the silver treatment by filling metallic containers with shiny coral bells, silverbush, cyclamen and primrose plants.

Photo By: DK - Simple Steps to Success: Containers for Patios © 2007 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Late Fall

  • Plant shrubs, roses, trees, hedges, climbers and fruit bushes.
  • Plant tulips.
  • Sow broad beans.
  • Plant onions and garlic.
  • Grow trees from seed.
  • Indoors, plant amaryllis bulbs and prepared hyacinths and narcissi.
  • Trim late-flowering shrubs to reduce winter wind damage.
  • Rake up fallen leaves and compost.

Any Time of Year

  • Make a compost bin; fill, turn and empty when necessary.
  • Make a wooden obelisk.
  • Create a bog garden.
  • Dig out a pond.
  • Make a border and lawn edge.
  • Make a rose arch.
  • Check tree ties, and loosen if necessary.
  • Look out for pests and diseases, and take appropriate action.
  • Cut out dead or diseased wood.
  • Clean all cutting tools after use to prevent spreading plant diseases.
Keep Reading

Next Up

Summer Gardening Planner

Follow this handy checklist and caring for your garden will be easier, quicker and more satisfying.

Winter Gardening Planner

Consult this handy checklist for wintertime care and maintenance of your garden.

Spring Gardening Planner

Do these tasks during spring and caring for your garden will be easier, quicker and more satisfying.

Color Garden for Florida

This garden design plan provides an ever-changing collage of bold, vibrant hues in foliage and flowers throughout the year.

Color Garden for the South

Imagine relaxing in your backyard amid the blooms of fringe tree, variegated abelia, and other colorful perennials and shrubs. Here's a plan that provides color throughout the seasons.

Color Garden for the Southwest

Use this landscape plan to create a beautiful garden room alive with color throughout the seasons.

Color Garden for the Northeast

A collection of perennials, blooming shrubs and vines provide color thorughout the season in this beautiful garden design.

Color Garden for the California Coast

Create a kaleidoscope of color in your garden throughout the seasons with this easy-to-follow landscape plan.

Color Garden for the Pacific Northwest

Use this landscape design plan to create a garden that's full of color and interest throughout the seasons.

Color Garden for the Upper Midwest

A vine-draped arbor and multi-seasonal color spotlight this garden room.

1,000+ Photos

Browse beautiful photos of our favorite outdoor spaces: decks, patios, porches and more.


Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.