The warm days and cool nights of early fall make it the perfect season to plant shrubs, giving them time to settle in and spread their roots before going dormant in winter.
Moderate autumn temperatures make it easier on a hard-working gardener, too.
This is the time to plant knockout roses, known for disease resistance and constant color. Be sure to choose a location with morning light. They will reward with blooms from early spring through the next fall.
Read on for six more of our favorite shrubs to plant this fall. Once you’ve chosen your favorite, pick up tips for how to plant them.
6 Favorite Shrubs for Fall
1. Camellia sasanqua
Some camellias bloom in spring, but sasanqua bloom in fall. Even without the blooms, sasanqua are a good bet because of their evergreen foliage and graceful growing habit.
Once established, they are drought-tolerant. Hardy in zones 7 to 10.
A show-off in fall, fothergilla is hardy in zones 5 to 8 and blooms in mid-spring. Mix in a partially shaded border with hostas, ferns, viburnum and foam flower.
3. Oakleaf hydrangea
Oakloaf hydrangea wins in summer when its white panicles emerge. They dry to a pinkish brown color in fall. Hardy in zones 5 to 9, oakleaf hydrangea appreciates rich, well-drained soil in full or partial sun.
Rhododendron flowers with clusters, or trusses, of blooms in late spring and early summer thrive in zones 5 to 8. Like azaleas, they require acidic soil and filtered sunlight with afternoon shade. When planting, make sure the top of the roots are at soil level.
5. Smoke bush
Noted for its feathery blooms in summer that, from a distance, resemble smoke. Smoke bush is hardy through most of the country, in zones 4 to 11.
Spirea is an early bloomer in spring, with tiny white blooms on arching branches. Give spirea a good start and it will be drought tolerant once established.