Fall Gardening tips from Wheelbarrel Nursery

Linda Black

Wheelbarrel Nursery

Tuesday, September 23 2014

Fall on the west coast is the perfect time to plant trees, shrubs and perennials. Our mild winter temperatures and rainy weather allow the trees time to produce small white roots and send them out into their environment without you providing the moisture needed. 

I usually tell customers that trees and shrubs have to be looked after for about three years until they can be left on their own. 

Fall planting reduces the extra care period by almost one year. To encourage this practice, most garden centres and nurseries will put special prices on these items in the fall.

Fall bulbs will also be available now. Look beyond the usual tulips and narcissus to some of the lesser known bulbs, and snowdrops of course for what is perhaps the first sign of hope for spring’s arrival. Also look for Camassia, scilla, alliums and anemone. I love the little anemones. I have both white and blue and use them under trees or in border edges. They come up early, bloom madly, then disappear without mess as the heat comes up and the foliage appears on the trees. I prefer to put tulips in pots so they can be moved around. Love the blooms but dislike the fading foliage. The pots add to the landscape but can be moved out of sight as the blooms fade. 

There are so many things in bloom right now but I will only mention one favourite that shines at this time of year. Common name is Seven Suns Flower with the botanical name being Heptacodium miconiodes. This large shrub leafs out early, is drought tolerant, blooms masses of small white fragrant blooms in late summer and fall and retains its leaves through November and December. What is not to like?

Happy Gardening!