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Tis the season. Every time I go to my favorite local nursery, Campbell Road in Cary, shoppers are stuffing these shrubs in their cars.

alba

Good choice. Beauty Berry takes shade, has a nice airy form, looks great in my woods and shrub borders. It can be cut back to the ground in spring or left to go wild.

americana

And then there is the big selling point–fall berries. Even after all our recent rain, my beauty berries still have stunning, neon-colored fruit. And they will for weeks to come. This long season of interest another big plus.

Beauty Berries seed for me–which means I have more than a dozen in my garden and always a few to give away to friends.

heavyberry

Most of my plants originally came from another favorite nursery–Camellia Forest in Chapel Hill. They’re having a Fall Open House this month. I think I’ll go buy some more beauty berry.

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When the season changes, so does the pallet in my Wake County NC garden. Cooler temeperature mean deeper colors.
Red which looks too hot in summertime suddenly seems to glow. spider-lily
And of all the reds, spider lily may be my favorite. I’m lucky if it blooms 2 weeks out of 52. Still, I wouldn’t be without this old southern flower that makes the path suddenly exoitic and full of color after the long hot summer.
wide_spiderlilies

All it asks from me is an initial investement. Plant the bulbs in an area where they won’t be disturbed and every year you’ll be delightfully surprised. The dark green leaves belong to Lenten Roses, BTW.

Salvias look their best in fall. This is “Lighthouse” my little sister’s favorite which she grows from seed and shares every year.
lighthouse-salvia

Popping up and not quite blending is the oxblood lily. It’s another of those plant it and forget it blubs that do well in the South. Just don’t forget where you planted them. Like spider lilies, they hate to be disturbed.
cypress_vine

Cypress vine grows readily from seed and is great to cover a mail box. I save the seeds from this plant every year and start them indoors under lights. (BTW, our mail man says he loves it, too even though he can no longer read our address)
beauty_berry

Finally, the beauty berries are a delight this time of year. This one is a Asian variety–but I’ve never met a beauty berry I didn’t like. They’re tough, will grow in my deicious woods, and make a great cut-back shrub for a mixed border in part sun or part shade. Do put it on your “grow that” list. And do share–what early fall colors are you enjoying in the garden?

A long-time gardener and a passionate beginner share the dirt on their NC gardens-

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