Summertime inevitably fades… but that’s when a fabulous fall landscape steps in! A veritable treasure trove of shrubs shines just as brightly as annual flowers in your porch pots and landscape beds. And they do it all with foliage!
These five Southern Living shrubs will step right into the starring role when your summer sparklers leave the stage:
Obsession Nandina’s fiery new growth fits right in with the brilliant reds of the season. As an evergreen shrub topping out at just 3-4 ft. high and wide, you’ll enjoy this charmer through the season and into the next. Hardy down to Zone 6, Obsession’s bonus perks are its deer resistance and richer color than other nandinas. It’s equally at home in large pots and in the landscape.
With stunning golden yellow foliage that rivals any daisy, Sunshine Ligustrum smiles with color through fall. At 3-6 ft. tall and 3-4 ft. wide, use multiples of this full-sun shrub as a small hedge or as a stunner in a porch pot combination planting. This is not only a sterile variety of Ligustrum: it’s also bloom-free… meaning there are no worries about it running wild in your yard. This evergreen is semi-deciduous at its lowest hardiness, Zone 6.
This shrub’s fabulous foliage matches the mood of the season: warm and brooding. Red Diamond’s dark burgundy foliage retains its color all year. And as a compact variety reaching 6 ft. tall and wide, it can be used in multiple ways—as a specimen plant, in mass plantings, and in borders. Hardy to Zone 7, Red Diamond shines in other seasons, too. It produces deep vivid red blooms in very early spring to welcome the return of warmer weather!
Talk about color – Golden Oakland Holly gives your landscape two of them! Its distinctive oak-shaped leaves are variegated with green and golden cream tones, setting it apart from your typical holly décor. Its upright shape, peaking at up to 20 ft, means little pruning on your part. But if you’d like, you can keep it in a container and prune to your desired size. Use it as a privacy hedge, a lovely accent with year-round interest, or an easy-care container plant. Hardy to Zone 6, Golden Oakland will be a stunner all four seasons.
Whoever says arborvitae are backdrop shrubs has never seen Forever Goldy. Its strong golden-green foliage develops adds a pop of color wherever you choose. Include its tight pyramidal shape anywhere—as a hedge, along a fence line, or as a specimen plant in a mixed border. Ranging from 10-12 ft. tall, you could also use it in large containers and prune accordingly. Hardy down to Zone 5.
With the glorious spectrum of colors these shrubs provide, your landscape will pop with cheery hues all autumn long.