Bright Fall Container

Try this updated twist that mixes mustard greens, marigolds, and sedums for stunning color that lasts for months.
Story by Rebecca Bull Reed

Whether you deem the ninth month late summer or early fall, one thing's for sure—September light is magical! Take advantage of the sun's lower angle, allowing it to pass through mesmerizing leaves and bounce off dazzling blooms. Our picks: 'Red Giant' mustard, 'Bonanza Harmony' French marigolds, and 'Angelina' sedums. When backlit, the ribs and veins of 'Red Giant' glow white to chartreuse, contrasting with its deep maroon, puckered foliage. We love the 'Bonanza Harmony' marigold for its intense shades of red punctuated by yellow centers. Tie it all together by planting the edge of the container with 'Angelina' sedums. Fill the pot with a high-quality, premoistened potting soil that contains fertilizer. Water your container in the morning, when the soil is slightly dry to the touch. Encourage new growth by snipping away yellowing leaves at the base of the mustard, and coax new buds by pinching off spent marigold blooms.

Try a New Fall Favorite
Use marigolds as you would mums for great autumn color. They're ideal in pots or in the ground.

African Marigolds (Tagetes erecta) grow tall and are known for their huge, round blooms in orange, yellow, or cream. Try the Discovery or Antigua series.

French Marigolds (T. patula) grow up to 12 inches tall and come in more color combos. Try the Bonanza and Bounty series.

Hybrid Marigolds created by crossing French and African marigolds (T. patula x erecta) yield large, long-blooming color and need no deadheading. Try the Sunburst and Zenith series.

See more Fall Container Gardening Ideas