Fall and Winter Landscaping Ideas to Brighten Your Gardens & Flowerbeds

Fall and Winter Landscaping Ideas

Richmond winter plant care

to Brighten Your Gardens & Flowerbeds

BCLS Landscape Services of Central Virginia

Summer is slowly coming to an end, and fall will be here to dazzle us soon. You want to continue the bounty of summer, but you also know that a frost or two will force your beautiful landscape to go to sleep.

The beginning of September is the perfect time to design your gardens and beds for fall and winter interest.

What Plants are the Best to Plant in the Fall?

In Richmond, VA, you want your landscape to reflect the warm hues of red, orange, and yellow as well as add new plants with rich colors.

Here are five fall landscaping plants to add to your Central Virginia flowerbeds this year:

  1. Add trees and shrubs that show off their beauty in autumn: Maples, sumac shrubs, and ginkgo trees all show off their magnificent color by late fall. Plus, sumac bushes add winter interest with their seed tufts.


  1. Include annuals on your front porch and back patio planters: Asters, chrysanthemums, ornamental kale, pumpkins, ornamental cauliflower, and cabbage will brighten up your front porch and outdoor living areas.


Include pansies and violas in hanging baskets or as border plants in your front flowerbeds. Don’t pull out your impatiens. They have a second life to them up to the first frost.


  1. Don’t forget about late bloomers: Rose of Sharon, stonecrop sedum, Black-eyed Susans, and marigolds start blooming in late August and will continue until there’s a freeze. The cooler temperatures sharpen fall color.


  1. Consider adding these annuals and perennials to your flower beds: Sneezeweed, Joe Pye weed, goldenrod, Russian sage, and turtleheads invite monarchs and other pollinators into your gardens as they prepare for their winter migrations.


  1. Plant bulbs and shrubs for early spring color. If you’re like most people, a blooming snowdrop or crocus will brighten your day. Fall is the time to plant spring flowers, such as crocus, daffodils, hyacinths, peonies, and snowdrops.


You also want to get dogwoods, forsythia, ornamental fruit trees, and redbuds planted before the ground freezes, so your trees revive your landscape in the spring.


Read more: Fall is the best time to include an outdoor fireplace or fire pit.

Landscaping for Winter Interest

After fall color, there’s not much to add when landscaping for winter interest. However, your design focus should rest on unique tree bark and branches as well as evergreens.

If you plant your landscape in early- to mid-fall, you’ll still have color in your winter landscape. Here are some evergreens for your winter landscape:


  • Arborvitae
  • Boxwood
  • Cleyera japonica
  • English laurel
  • Hollies
  • Junipers
  • Mugo pine
  • Mountain laurel
  • Norway spruce
  • Privet
  • Rhododendron
  • Wintercreeper
  • Winter Daphne
  • Yew

Some of these shrubs have berries that will attract winter birds, including bluebirds, chickadees, and others. Choose the variegated variety whenever you can because of the color contrasts brighten up a gray winter day.

Learn more: You can still invite pollinators to your fall flowerbeds and landscape.

Consider trees and shrubs for their bark or seedpods that give a show of color as well as attract winter birds:


  • Bayberry – Bayberry’s unique slate blue berries add contrast against a winter landscape as well as bring birds to your garden.


  • Chokeberry – The red and black berry varieties stand out on a snowy day. Plus, chokeberry’s fruit invites birds to feed in your yard.


  • Firethorn – Dark green leaves and fire-bright orange berries cheer up any winter landscape.


  • Harry Lauder’s walking stick – While all the leaves drop during the fall, Harry Lauder’s walking stick provides interest with the branches’ curves and curls—especially with snow on the limbs.


  • Red twig and Red Osier dogwoods – After all of the leaves are gone, these types of dogwood trees add a punch of color to your VA landscape.

Hire a Landscaping Company near You to Design Fall and Winter Color for Your Richmond Property

A landscape design/build company will take your ideas and desires for fall and winter color and incorporate them into your gardens and flowerbeds. Your Richmond, VA landscape designer, will add these plants to your property before winter sets in.

If you want a four-season landscape this year, call BCLS Landscape Services today at 804-752-0052 or fill out our contact form.

BCLS serves residential and commercial properties throughout Central Virginia.


BHG.com, “Winter Landscaping Tips.”

HGTV.com, “Evergreen Shrubs Bring Non-Stop Color.”

Houzz.com, “20 Favorite Flowers for the Fall Landscape.”

TheSpruce.com, “Creating a Four-Season Landscape for Year-Round Interest.”

Ibid, “Popular Plants for Winter Landscapes.”