Landscaping can be one of the best marketing assets a commercial property has at its disposal. Colorful fall displays can help attract potential tenants, residents, and clients. What comes to mind when you think “fall color?” Maybe it’s Pansies or Mums. Both are go-to choices to add color. Unfortunately, both are short-lived and can be costly to plant year after year.
If you’ve been looking for ways to save money in your landscape budget, we have a little tip for you… USE ALTERNATIVES TO ANNUAL FALL COLOR!!
Alternatives to Annuals for Fall Color
Plant perennials once and they come back year after year. They are low-maintenance plants, and as they grow and mature, they just get better and better.
- Perennials can add one, two, or three seasons of interest to high-visibility planting areas.
- Combining perennials with annuals or mixing different varieties of perennials together can create dramatic displays.
- Beneficial insects find shelter in perennials. Beneficials prey on other bugs and pests that destroy plants in the landscape.
Grasses are perennials as well. So, they get planted once and they come back year after year. Grasses tend to be insect and disease tolerant and don’t appear on the buffet menu for the local deer population.
- Grasses add height and movement to the landscape.
- The variety of sizes, shapes, and colors mean there is an ideal choice for every location.
- Grasses can be used in planters as well to create visual interest.
Shrubs are an ideal alternatives to annual plantings. Offering at least two seasons of interest, shrubs make excellent accent plants, mass plantings, or backdrops.
- Shrubs can add flowers, stunning fall foliage, or unique bark to the landscape
- Many shrubs attract butterflies or provide fall and winter food for birds and other wildlife
- Fewer shrubs than annuals per square foot = $$$ in the bank
Evergreens are just that – green all year long. They come in all shapes and sizes, making them extremely versatile and adaptable to all types of landscape conditions.
- Evergreens offer year-round color – and not always in green. There are yellow, variegated, and green evergreens and some even change things up in fall with warm fall colors.
- Multi-functional plants – evergreens can act as barriers, screens, and backdrops for ornamental landscape plantings.
Why Fall Annual Alternatives Make Cent$
We’re not knocking fall annuals. We love them and use them often in landscape designs and displays. BUT…mixing some of these alternatives WITH fall annuals can have visual, environmental, and financial benefits.
Fall annual alternatives also offer more versatility for hard-to-plant areas while reducing annual maintenance costs. Replacing even a small percentage of annual plantings can save money over the years to come.
Everywhere you turn, costs are on the climb. As business managers and owners, working within a budget is more than just part of the job – it’s the difference between making a profit and breaking even. It can be expensive to stay competitive in the market. That is why it is important to find ways to stretch your landscape dollar.