Purple Allium

Fall Planting Is for All Seasons

As Ms. Hepburn said, a garden is truly to believe in tomorrow — a happy tomorrow full of color. 

And there’s no better time than now to begin exercising that belief. Late fall is the perfect time to plant bulbs. 

When the temperature in fall has dropped to about 55 degrees F and the overnight drops to between 40 and 50, this is the ideal time to plant bulbs for spring.

So let’s get to which plants thrive and grow best in our neck of the woods.


Which Bulbs to Plant in Fall

Deer-Proofing Your Garden

Deer-Proofing Your Garden


“We have a considerable deer population on Long Island,” says our own Dave Stockwell. “And we agree recommend choosing bulbs that the deer tend to avoid.”

Such plants might include daffodils, allium (ornamental onion), hyacinth, grape hyacinth and crocus. 

And though not actually bulbs, you can venture into some of the other tuberous perennials like peony and tall bearded iris as well.




Grape Hyacinth: These beauties can make beautiful edging to other spring flowers.

Grape Hyacinth:

“We often use these beauties to make lovely edging to other spring flowers,” says Dave.


Crocus: These beauties are often the first flower you see in spring. And they return year after year.


These delightful plants are often the first flower you see in spring. And they return year after year.


Best Soils for Bulbs

Bulbs grow nicely  in many different soil types, but not in heavy, poorly draining soils. Ideally you should plant in soils that are organically rich, slightly acidic, well-drained sandy loams or loamy sands.


Parrot Tulips

Parrot Tulips

Inexpensive bulbs provide very early color in your garden beginning in early March through late mid-June.

“The ideal time to plant bulbs is late October, early November,” says Dave Stockwell. “Tulips, Daffodils, Allium, Hyacinths, Crocus, Lilies, etc. offer their own unique color, texture, height. Each require their own sun and shade tolerance; and some have fragrance, for example., Hyacinths.”

The way you install bulbs is probably the most important aspect of ensuring they flower in the following spring, say our experts. 

Each type of bulb has its own specified planting depth and spacing (see below). It is extremely important that you follow the proper depths — otherwise, the bulbs will not flower or may not leaf out. 


Crocus bulb:flower

Crocus bulb:flower

In addition, the pointy tip of the bulb must be planted straight up; otherwise the bulb will definitely not perform as intended.


Planting Depths for Spring Bulbs

Alliums: 8 inches

Crocus: 3 inches

Daffodil: 6 inches

Hyacinth: 7 inches

Tulips: 6 inches




Spring Flowers Inspiration:

Spring Flowers Inspiration:



Audrey Hepburn said ‘To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.’ When you plant this little brown bulb in the soil, you plant the hope that you’ll see it break ground and bloom in the spring.






Tulips, Tulips, Tulips:  

Tulips, Tulips, Tulips:

Note from Deck and Patio: These beauties are some of the first heralds that spring has arrived. It’s no wonder that Ms. Hepburn and the producers of “Gardens of the World..” chose them as a focus of an episode — and that they are one of the horticulturist’s suggested bulbs.


By |2022-10-20T11:48:28-05:00October 20th, 2022|fall maintenance, Gardening, outdoor maintenance, Seasonal Landscapes, Updating Landscape|Comments Off on Fall Planting Is for All Seasons

Landscaping Trends: Purple Is ‘the’ Color for 2018

Rihanna Wearing Lavender Eye Shadow

Rihanna Wearing Lavender Eye Shadow

Purple is seen everywhere these days.

Ultra Violet is Pantone’s 2018 color of the year.

And from hair color, eye shadow and  clothing, purple is taking center page in style magazines: People, InStyle and Essence to name but a few.

Not to mention, Rihanna, a true style icon, has been seen wearing lovely lavender shadow to accent her eyes.




Top Gardening Trends

Top Gardening Trends


So. It’s not surprising that one of HGTV’s top garden trends for 2018 is purple plants.

And we’ve got a few ideas today to help you choose bright pops of purple that can be planted throughout the 2018 season — beginning this spring.





Spring Purple.


1. Salvia Sylvestris May Night


Deck and Patio Pondscape

Deck and Patio Pondscape

Blooming in late spring, perennial Salvia Sylvestris May Night (May Night Meadow Sage), seen here in the right foreground, boasts deep purple-blue blooms.

The good news for gardeners in our Long Island, NY, area is how hardy this beauty is for our area of the Northeast because it claims superb cold hardiness, is a vigorous plant, and is tolerant of heavy clay soils.

If the robust color isn’t enough to make you rush to pick up some of these Salvias, consider: these plants attract butterflies and hummingbirds, and are deer and rabbit resistant. They make glorious cut flowers for inside and they bloom more than 4 weeks.




2. Soapwort




Another easy to grow stunner for spring is Soapwort. It’s also called Bouncing Bet which is a clue on how prolific it is.

It prefers full drainage and full sun and if you have a wall or trellis, it’ll make a home there.

It’s also available in low ground cover form that spreads nicely and is ideal around a water feature: stream, pond or waterfalls.

Its family name is Saponaria officinalis and offers good cut flowers.





Summer Purple.

1. Verbana



Available in annual and perennial varieties (a total of 250 varieties in fact), this stunning flora is at its best during the hottest of summer heat.

With so many varieties, it’s a cinch to find a glorious purple specimen for your garden.

Often used in herbal teas, it’s beloved by more than humans. Yup. Butterflies and hummingbirds adore its blooms as well.



2. Purple Allium

Deck and Patio Landscaping Project

Deck and Patio Landscaping Project

Although planted in fall, the Purple Allium Sphaerocephalon seen in the foreground of this Deck and Patio project is a summer blooming delight.

Its robust color thrives beautifully on Long Island and in the Northeast in general.

Deck and Patio landscape designers chose the Purple Allium for its height, as well as the lovely color contrast it made against the green and yellows around it.

The plants first open green, and then mature to a bright crimson-purple. More good news. It’s rabbit, deer and rodent resistant and is loved by pollinators.



Autumn Purple.

1. Aster

Purple Dome Aster

Purple Dome Aster

The Purple Dome Aster (novae-angliae) is a beautiful autumn plant that blooms from late summer in to autumn.

It is a dwarf variety of the more common New England Aster. And as you can see from the photo, it makes a wonderful impact as an accent among fall grasses.

Needless to say it can be cut for beautiful indoor bouquets. Indeed, there’s lots to cut as these plants boast masses of daisy-like deep purple flowers. They also have a sunny yellow center.

These beauties will bloom for over 4 weeks in fall; in spring and early summer they show off gray-green leaves. These disappear under the royal purple daisies in fall.




Autumn/Winter Purple.


1. Callicarpa dicotomía (Purple Beautyberry)

Callicarpa. Photo: Missouri Botanical Garden

Callicarpa. Photo: Missouri Botanical Garden

The Callicarpa dichotoma or purple beautyberry shrub’s colorful purple berries are a treasure in winter. They begin to bud in fall and last throughout winter.

The shrubs grow up to 4 feet tall. The branches boast pinkish to light purple flowers in summer which mature to these delightful berries in autumn.

These plants accept full sun and partial shade, which is good news. It gives you more options for planting and are not very demanding when it comes to growing conditions.

So as your starved eyes search for color in winter, your beautyberries, in bright purple, will satisfy that need. Do any pruning in late winter, just before spring. And as for your winter birdies — they’ll eat some of the purple berries.


And as a last little gift to our readers:

We all know what makes a purple garden grow: a little Purple Rain.

Now it’s Prince, after all, so you’ll have to be a little patient for the video to begin (at about 1.08 mins). But oh, his Purple Rain. Enjoy!



(Note: Our feature photo at the top of the page is the annual Globe Amaranth. Its bright pom-poms last well into the fall.)



By |2018-04-26T14:44:59-05:00April 26th, 2018|Backyard Refurbishments, Gardening, Koi Ponds, Landscaping, Outdoor Living, outdoor maintenance, Plantings/Pondscapes, Seasonal Landscapes, Unique Ideas|Comments Off on Landscaping Trends: Purple Is ‘the’ Color for 2018
Go to Top