Annuals · Container Gardening · Garden Design · Garden DIY

Fall Front Porch Decorating


I don’t relish the end of summer, but I do enjoy giving the front of my home its fall makeover.


As you can see, plants in my summer containers were textbook examples of overachievers, nearly blocking entry to the front door.


She could barely get a glimpse of guests from behind the flowers and foliage of impatiens.

The first step was to remove all plants unable to brave fall’s cooler temperatures. Sweet potato vines, impatiens, and coleus turn to mush when temperatures dip close to 40 degrees, so off to the compost bins they went. Perennials, including hostas and coral bells, were relocated to permanent quarters in the garden.


With the slate wiped clean, the fun began…


Swiss chard and a Rex begonia, granted a stay from the compost bin, became the thrillers in a seasonal scheme featuring ornamental cabbage, a purple-flowering mum, Helichrysum ‘Icicles’, and Alternanthera ‘Purple Knight’.

Gourd-filled Obelisk for Fall Decoration

A gourd-filled obelisk was created for the other side of the door. (I’ll share tips and tricks for making this fall focal point. Just subscribe to my newsletter and I’ll send you detailed instructions – absolutely free.) A nearby hanging basket was also filled with gourds.

Wooden beverage crate planted for fall

The wooden beverage crate I planted a few weeks ago was moved into position.


A pumpkin took the place of a plant in a pot that once held Browallia speciosa.


All containers were done.

Decorating with Pumpkins

What would a fall display be without pumpkins? There are so many extraordinary pumpkins and gourds available today. Besides orange jack-o-lantern types, there are green ones, white ones, gray ones, pink ones, and red ones. There are members of the Cucurbita family with warts, some smooth-skinned, and some deeply ribbed. There are pumpkins in every size from miniature to majestic.


I didn’t have the heart to dismantle my vertical fern garden so I nestled a few pumpkins among fanciful fronds.

Window box with Pumpkins

The plan for the window boxes was to remove everything and line them with pumpkins in various shapes, sizes and colors, but Cyperus ‘Baby Tut’ and a Rex begonia were so beautiful, I couldn’t bear to yank them, so I arranged pumpkins around them. Instead of pruning the long trailing stems of vinca, I twined them across the pumpkins to mimic vines meandering over pumpkins in the field.

Front Door Decorating for Fall

How is your fall decorating coming? Share photos of your fall festooning and stories of your autumn gardening activities. Garden with me!











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