I took a trip to our local nursery this morning, and fall was certainly in the air. The sun was shining, the breeze was cool, and the nursery was stocked with flowering kale, mums, and asters, as well as plenty of straw bales and corn stalks.
It made me want to get my porch pots and patio containers in shape for fall. The annuals and veggies I've planted in them are getting that tired, end-of-the-season look, and I am ready for fall.
I love mums (though I know many gardeners are averse to them) and flowering kale, and these are my stand-by container plants for fall. But there are many other options as well. According to About.com Container Gardening Guide Kerry Michaels, "fall is a wonderful season to try hardy perennials in your container gardens." She recommends heuchera, sedum, grasses, and lamb's ear, among others. She has a terrific article on her site full of tips for fall and winter container gardening -- definitely worth a look if you're hoping for a little inspiration.
I'm a pretty practical gardener most of the time, but something about fall just cries out for porch pots spilling with gorgeous fall colors. It's the last hurrah of a long gardening season, and it's definitely worth going out on a strong note!