If your home in Montgomery, Chester or Berks County looks drab in the fall, then perhaps this is the year to add some fall impact to your landscape.  Fall stirs up thoughts of those rich, warm hues of reds, golds and oranges, balanced by more subtle shades of tans and bronze.  Planting shrubs that add a burst of color will be a welcome transition of colors from season to season.

Add a Burst of Color to Brighten Up Your Fall Landscape

For shrubs to earn our ‘fabulous’ label, we insist on ease of care.  The last thing you want is a fussy shrub that spreads like wildfire and becomes a maintenance nightmare.  Keep in mind what your particular needs are before buying a plant.  Are you looking for an attractive foundation plant to complement your home?  Do you want it as a focal point to enjoy from your patio or deck?  Or perhaps you’d like to add it to your current plantings which give you privacy. 

As you begin your search for the perfect shrub for your yard, keep in mind the foliage,

bloom times, heights, color and its needs (sun and soil requirements).  Whitehouse Landscaping’s design and landscaping experience can create a beautiful, distinctive and sustainable installation.

A Few of our Favorites and All Native

Fothergilla major (large) and Fothergilla gardenia dwarf) 

From mid-October to mid-November, the foliage is a mix of yellows, oranges and reds.  These outstanding colors are magnified when planted in masses.  Best color if situated in full sun rather than bright shade.  It’s a beautiful native shrub with white flowers in early spring. Looks great with ornamental grasses.  A wide variety of insects will visit these flowers for food.    Fothergilla major can reach heights of 10 feet with an equal spread once it reaches maturity.  Fothergilla gardenia is a more compact shrub reaching 2 to 3 feet.


Lots of new varieties are available.  Their foliage color is stunning, even throughout the summer season.  Come fall, the color is even more intense.  ‘Obsession’ grows only about 3 l/2 feet tall and produces rich burgundy and pomegranate colored leaves and has a compact, dense growth habit.   Nadinas are super-tough water-wise plants. If you’re looking for a shrub that has lacy foliage, colorful fall foliage color, interesting flowers, autumn berries and is evergreen, then Nandina domestica is for you.  This shrub has just about every feature a homeowner could ask for!  Loves full or part sun.  The more sun, the better color.  But it will even grow in a shady part of the garden.

Itea virginia ‘Henry’s Garnet’ 

This native shrub produces frothy white flowers in the spring, has lush green foliage carried on slightly weeping branches through summer and the richest, most intense crimson foliage lasting from mid-September to the end of November.  They flower best in full sun, but do well in part shade.  This shrub will definitely be a show stopper in the fall garden border

Oakleaf Hydrangea 

While many people are attracted to their beautiful big blooms, these shade lovers put on a spectacular show of fall foliage color once temperatures cool.  They definitely liven up any color palette. 

Cutleaf Smooth Sumac (Rhus glabra ‘Laciniata’

If you have a large area to plant, this plant performs well and can grow to 15 feet in width and heights and spreads by forming colonies.  It can tolerate dry soils.  Its deeply cut and lobed leaves are bright orange-red in the fall.  The fuzzy red winter berries, resulting from yellowish green flowers in June, hang on into late winter giving winter interest and a source of food for the birds.   There are plenty of sumac varieties and all have great fall color.


These fantastic shrubs produce showy, fragrant flowers in the spring and also offer colorful and delicious fruit for birds in the fall.  Some viburnums are deciduous with awesome fall color; others are semi-evergreen or evergreen and offer distinct winter interest.  ‘Winterthur’, ‘With-rod’, ‘Blackhaw’, ‘Arrowwood’ and ‘American Cranberrybush’ all have stunning colors.  We think virburnums are the most versatile and yard worthy genus you can find!   Read Shrubs We Love – Viburnums.

Ninebark (Physocarpus) 

There’s a cultivar for every landscape!  All have off-white flowers in early summer and fruit taking on a pinkish color in mid-late summer.  ‘Coppertina’ has bronzey-red foliage, ‘Summer Wine’ has burgundy-brown.  The compact ones can be up to 5 feet and the others can range up to 10 feet.  They like sunny to slightly shady areas.


Superb shrub valued for abundant clusters of long-lasting, violet berries covering branches in fall. New growth has bronze tinge. Small, purplish pink flowers appear in summer amongst large green leaves. Prune in late winter to early spring to encourage new growth. Deciduous.

Purple Smoketree Continus coggygria

This deciduous shrub or small tree has magnificent dark red-purple oval leaves, that turn scarlet in autumn.  In July and August, it has gorgeous fluffy plumes of purplish-pink flowers that look like a haze of smoke.  Looks best when plant has been pruned hard in March. 

Let us help you plan and install some fall color in your landscape this year.  The cooler weather and more plentiful moisture will give your shrubs a chance to put out roots and get used to their new home before the stress of next summer’s heat.

Let us help you plan and install some fall color in your home landscapeWhitehouse Landscaping has a comprehensive knowledge of plants so that you get the right plant that grows to the right size for the right place in your landscape.  Our landscaping and maintenance  experience can help bring a plan to life that is attractive to the eye, functional and sustainable.  Call us at 484-300-4290 or fill out a contact form on our website to see how we can help you with your landscape needs.