Don't You Love Late Bloomers?

By Kerry Ann Mendez

Last week a patron inquired about hardy plants that look beautiful mid to late August. Her daughter is getting married next year around that time and the reception will be at their home. She was hoping to get a jumpstart this fall by adding appropriate plants that would be well established and blooming for the big event. Smart lady!

I think it's fair to say that by mid-August, many gardens are looking spent. They don't have the same vibrancy as earlier in the season. Thankfully, there are some dazzling "late bloomers" that hit full stride in late summer. These colorful magnets not only draw the eye of appreciative gardeners, but also attract grateful pollinators. Below are a few of my favorites:

Flowering Shrubs

And don't worry that it is too late to plant! Fall is an ideal time to plant. Even though the air temperature is cooler, the soil remains warm for much longer, allowing roots to anchor in for the winter ahead. There is also typically more rain in fall. Plant sales are a bonus too!

About the Author

KERRY ANN MENDEZ is an award-winning garden educator, author and design consultant based in southern Maine. Her latest book is The Budget-Wise Gardener. You'll now find her at Estabrook's consulting on garden design, answering your gardening questions and much more. Plus, check out her Garden Webinar series for more tips and tricks.

Kerry Ann Mendez