7 Front Door Plants to Give Your Home Fall Curb Appeal

updated Sep 15, 2020
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A good-looking front door is everything. And one of the easiest ways to punch up your curb appeal is by adding in some fresh new greenery to your plant containers when the seasons change. What flowers fare best in the cooler weather and are also eye-catching enough to be front-door worthy? Here are seven fall plants for your front door.

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“These fall bloomers are the perfect addition to your fall arrangements,” says Halley Beagle, Nursery Manager at Garden*Hood in Atlanta. 

She recommends pulling from the fall/harvest color palette and choosing perennial varieties since they’ll be larger and have more interesting foliage than your typical “Chrysanthe-muffin” you get at a local nursery or grocery.

Chrysanthemums love a good sunny spot and therefore require a pretty regular watering routine (every other day or whenever the soil is dry). 

Beware: Chrysanthemums are toxic to dogs and cats.

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Beagle says Heucheras (also known as Coral Bells) are perfect for adding a pop of color to your fall arrangements. They are also more shade-tolerant, so they would do nicely under a covered porch.

“When mixed with a nice Autumn Fern, it makes for a lovely evergreen arrangement that you can add annual flowers to every season,” says Beagle. “They come in the full spectrum of colors from chartreuse to onyx, and boast delicate flower stalks in the late spring and often again in the fall.”

According to the ASPCA, Heucheras are pet-friendly.

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Ornamental grasses 

Beagle says grasses are a great way to break up the texture in your containers since they come in such a variety of colors (bronze, blue, green) and forms (stiff and upright or whimsical and arching).

“I personally love adding Carex flagellifera ‘Toffee Twist’ to my containers to broaden the palette and add a soft sweeping element to the arrangement,” she says.

Different varieties of grass have different toxicity levels; check the ASPCA website for your variety.

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Pansies and violas 

Beagle says she loves pansies and violas for several reasons: they will not only look beautiful in fall, but they’ll also last throughout the winter and re-bloom in the spring. And they come in such a broad spectrum of colors, you’ll be able to style your arrangement to match (or purposefully contrast) your front door.

Pansies and violas like full to part sun and regular watering.

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“Another cool season annual, these dramatic upright flowers are a great way to add some height to your planters,” says Beagle. 

She says that like pansies and violas, snapdragons will also last through the winter and re-bloom in the spring when the temperatures start to warm up.

Snapdragons are non-toxic to animals. They are happy in a good sunny spot as well as a shadier one. They prefer to have their soil kept moist (but not too moist).

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Ornamental kale and cabbage

A staple fall plant: ornamental kale and cabbage.

“There are many varieties that run in the white to green to purple range, but it’s the rigid-yet-fringy texture that really stands out,” says Beagle. “They also come in a range of shapes and sizes, so getting creative with these is very easy.”

Your ornamental kale and cabbage will appreciate full sun and moist soil.

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I wouldn’t have thought to plant herbs in a fall flower container, but Beagle says they’re some of her favorite additions.

“I love incorporating herbs into arrangements,” she says. “The earthy textures and smells really bring an arrangement to life.”

She recommends planting rosemary for height or thyme to lovingly spill over the edge. Different types of herbs have different light and watering needs, although most will do well in full to partial sun with regular watering.

Some things to consider when it comes to front door plants:

When picking out your front door fall plants, Beagle says your most important considerations should be how much light your front door area gets, as well as your access to water.

“You should also consider how much ‘touch-up’ work the planters will require,” she adds. “While annual flowers are going to offer the brightest pops of color, they will require deadheading to encourage them to keep blooming and to keep the arrangement looking nice and fresh.”

Other things to keep in mind: Will your plants be protected from strong, damaging winds? Do you have sturdy planters for your fall flower arrangements? Beagle suggests investing in strong, thick outdoor ceramic planters.  

She also warns to steer away from fertilizing during this time of year, and instead, encourages refreshing at least the top 6 inches of your potting soil.

“There is a finite amount of nutrients in the soil, and most annuals are going to need a lot of nutrients to keep going,” she says. “It’s always best practice to freshen up the soil every time you change out your planters.”

So get creative, get your hands dirty, and make your front door pop with some new fall plants.