With the excitement of getting going on your spring garden take a minute to think about fall.
Some of the plants started from seed in April have their big payoff in October.
Purple millet is started from seed now so it can thrive in the heat of the summer, producing those glorious six-feet tall burgundy plants and seed heads that persist until a hard freeze.
Last year I posted here that I have lots of Purple Millet seeds from two years ago and anyone who wanted some could email me at email@example.com. Three people requested some seed. One from Alabama, one from Arkansas and one from Texas.
The requester from Texas is sending me seeds of Texas Star Hibiscus in exchange. I'm jazzed to say the least.
The photo is of a Texas Star Hibiscus that I took at a fabulous restaurant near Tulsa, called Living Kitchen.
So, when you are out shopping for spring, think about fall, too. Castor beans, Nepeta, Asters, Zinnias, Purple Millet, Asclepias, Autumn Joy Sedum, Toad Lily, Chrysanthemum, Goldenrod, Helenium sneeze weed and Joe Pye Weed are easy to grow plants that are planted now and will make your garden look wonderful in fall.
Lots of vegetables are hard workers into the fall, too. Plant a variety of chard such as rainbow chard or Red Russian Kale for fall beauty. Eggplant, gourds, okra, peppers, tomatoes and others are harvested until the first frost.
The Red Russian Kale I planted last year persisted in the front bulb bed all winter. We ate some of it from time to time and it is still as beautiful as ever.
I find the Rainbow Chard seeds picky to germinate. Overplant the seeds - plant more than you think you will need. Those lime green and red stems in the fall garden never fail to get attention from visitors.