Fall is starting to ease its way into Northeast Ohio and our home. And while I’m not quite ready to put out the pumpkins, there are a few things I’m doing around here to transition our home from summer to fall. One of them being our planters on our front porch. Today, I’m sharing my tips for creating beautiful fall planters for your front porch.
Fall planters for your front porch
Tips for creating beautiful fall planters for your front porch
Search for inspiration
If you already have something in mind you can skip this step but each year I try to do something just a little bit different. I don’t know if it’s the designer in me or what.
As summer comes to an end, I head to Pinterest for inspiration. Also, I pick up some of my favorite home design and gardening magazines to get some ideas.
I also like to visit my local garden center to get inspired. I almost always use mums but the other plants and flowers I mix in are different from year to year. Seeing what plants and flowers they have available, and what looks good next to what helps get the ideas spinning in my head.
Work with what you have
When deciding on a look for our planters on the front porch I like to take into account what we already have that can work into the design.
For summer, I purchased some black mamba and bordeaux petunias. The ones I put into planters are doing pretty good and I thought the colors would be perfect for fall.
I also purchased a ready-made planter with begonias and alyssum for the front porch. The begonias didn’t do so well but the alyssum is hanging in there. I love the way it grows down the planter and creates a pretty base. I thought it would be perfect mixed in with something that had more height.
Using some of the plants we already have on hand is a way to save some money while also getting a slightly different look for the new season.
Pick a color pallet
Decide on the color pallet you want to use for your fall front porch planters. Do you want something that looks traditionally fall? Or, do you prefer the darker moodier colors of the season? Maybe you want a sophisticated tone on tone look instead.
When decorating our front porch for fall I like to have a color pallet in mind before heading to the garden center. If I’m reusing flowers from the summer this will usually influence the colors and the look I go with for fall.
The alyssum I have is white and will work with anything. The black mamba and bordeaux petunias though gave me the idea to stick with berry, burgundy, and purple as my color pallet for fall.
I tend to prefer these darker, moodier colors when creating our fall planters for our front porch because of the color of the brick on our house. It has more of an orangish reddish tint to it which I don’t love and don’t want to highlight with the traditional orange and rust colors of fall.
Determine planters needed
Assess the planters you have on hand and determine if you need to purchase any new ones. This summer, I accidentally broke one of my smaller planters and had yet to replace it.
I’ve also been looking for a bigger planter for our front porch but was uncertain of what I wanted. With it being so late in the season, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to find anything locally in stock that I loved.
It was slim picking but I did manage to find a few that I liked. I decided to go with these brushed slate resin planters and an urn one that is also resin.
I always bring my planters into the garage during the cold winter months but these I could use at Christmas and fill them with greenery for the holidays if I wanted. TI wouldn’t have to worry about them cracking or breaking like I would with my ceramic and porcelain ones. They were also pretty inexpensive which was a plus!
Mix and match your Planters
Over the last few years, I’ve really come to love a grouping of planters on our front porch. I think it makes for an interesting and impactful display. It also gives me the opportunity to play around with a bunch of different flowers and plants.
We have a little nook to the right of our front door and can comfortably fit a decent size grouping. I love to vary the heights and styles of our pots to create a layered design. Drawing the viewer in and keeping their eye moving throughout the display.
Vary your Fall plants
I also like to vary my plants. Both in type and in height to create a look that is unique and different.
This year I chose to pot the mums on their own and do a few other mixed pots. Since the petunias are low and trailing, the cabbage and kale were the perfect plants to mix in for a complete look. They sorta anchor the arrangement and give it a grounding point.
When I was at Lowes looking for additional pots, I couldn’t help but grab a few additional fall plants to add to my display. I grabbed an atomic violet celosia that I planted on its own and added to the front porch display. The color mixes in beautifully with the mums and the petunias.
I also grabbed some perennials. I was planning to add them to our front bed but decided to pot for now. The fan burgundy lobelia and the fall in love sweetly anemone I potted together in the smaller brushed slate planter. They’re beautiful mixed together and I’ll see how they do living in the same pot. I have plans to redo our front bed and will probably incorporate them when I do later this season.
After picking a color pallet, I decided to veer from it slightly. My husband made me do it! Mike fell in love with the celosia in the ice cream variety colorway and I decided to mix it in for fun in a pot on its own.
My alyssum is a little wilted right now but I’m hoping all it needs is a bit of water and some sun and it comes back to life. I added a little lemon goldenrod with it for height and will see how they grow together. It says its blooming season is spring and summer so I’m hoping it stays mostly green for fall. If it doesn’t though no big deal. I have it potted next to the ice cream celosia so the colors will “talk” to each other and coordinate nicely!
Add texture and interest
One of the things I love to add to my fall planters is texture and interest. I do this through the use of ornamental cabbages, kales, and leafy greens as well as with pumpkins and gourds.
I grabbed a small cabbage and 2 small kale plants from our local growers but you can find them at the big box home stores as well. The purples in the cabbage and kale work really well with the petunias. Making for a really interesting mix!
When pumpkins and gourds show up at our local garden centers I’ll scoop some of those up as well to mix in. I didn’t see any yet and it’s a bit too early for us here in Ohio.
A few dark green, lumpy gourds and some dark green and blue pumpkins mixed in will really make it feel like fall!
Have fun and try something new
My last tip for creating beautiful fall planters for your front porch is just to have fun with it and try something new! You can start small with one or two pots and mix a few plants to see what you like and what works well together.
I don’t really worry too much about whether something is an annual or a perennial but I do try to pay attention to the amount of light something will need. If you try mixing a shade loving plant with a sun-loving one, most likely one won’t be too happy. I’ve tried to force one or the other before and it doesn’t always work out so well.
You can always ask for help too! I’ve found the employees at our local store and our big box stores to be so helpful and full of tips and ideas when I have questions. They can help guide you if you’re unsure of what to mix with what and point you in the right direction.
I hope these tips help you and get you inspired to create something beautiful on your own this year!
What plants do you love to use for fall on your front porch?