11 types of flowers that thrive in the crisp fall air

11 types of flowers that thrive in the crisp fall air

  • Planting these 11 popular flowers will keep your garden blooming even as temperatures begin to drop.
  • Hardy flowers like mums, asters, and pansies will bloom into the fall and need less water to thrive.
  • Annual plants need to be replanted every spring, but perennial plants will return on their own.
  • Visit Insider’s Home & Kitchen Reference library for more stories.

While we typically credit the spring and summer as the best times to plant and grow flowers, the autumn season brings about unique blooms that not only tolerate cooler temperatures but flourish in them and provide a picturesque aesthetic. 

While there are dozens of flowers that are great for the fall, these 11 are the most popular for their temperature tolerance and autumn appearance. The team at the gardening retailer and brand Proven Winners share their picks and tips on how to care for these autumn blooms.

1. Marigold

Orange marigold flowers

When you think of fall flowers, you likely picture marigolds.

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Arguably the quintessential autumn flower, the marigold is a carnation-like bloom that appears frequently in autumn bouquets. This annual is in the sunflower family Asteraceae and can be identified by its orange hue and clusters of petals.

2. Chrysanthemums

Bunches of different colored chrysanthemums.

Planted mums are perennials, but potted mums should be treated as annuals.

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Better known as mums, these flowers come in warm autumn shades of orange, red, pink, and yellow. For your mums to bloom in the fall when they are most popular, it is best to plant them in early spring. Mums can also survive early winter chills in November and December with proper care. 

3. Black-eyed Susan

A field of black eyed susan flowers

The high-contrast black pistil makes the yellow flowers stand out.

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Black-eyed Susans are one of the most popular wildflowers, distinguished by their sunflower or daisy-like appearance and black pistils. These flowers are native to North America and are well known for growing from early summer to mid-fall.

4. Sweet alyssum

Sweet alyssum flowers growing in a garden

Sweet alyssum have a strong floral fragrance.

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Sweet alyssum flowers are members of the mustard family (same as the purple cress and cut-leaved toothwort), therefore known for their strong fragrance as well as small, delicate blooms that come in pink, white, and yellow. Sweet alyssums make the perfect accent to any fall flower bouquet or hanging planter basket.

5. Dianthus

A field of multicolored dianthus flowers

Dianthus not only thrive in the fall, but they smell like fall too.

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The spicy yet sweet-smelling scent of the dianthus flower mimics that of cinnamon or clove, making it a perfect autumn flower. Dianthus flowers are hardy, come in blooms of pinks and purples, and are quite low maintenance. 

6. False sunflower (Heliopsis)

A field of heliopsis flowers

Heliopsis adds a bright pop of yellow to a garden.

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Also known as oxeye sunflowers, false sunflowers are wildflowers native to most of North America. These golden blooms give the appearance of a typical springtime daisy and will do best in warmer climates, but can tolerate cooler autumn temperatures.

7. Stonecrop (aka Sedum)

A closeup of stonecrop flowers in a garden

Stonecrop plants are actually a type of succulent.

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The stonecrop plant is a sedum succulent plant, which makes it hardy in warm weather and tolerant in cooler weather (even into winter) because of its water-storing abilities. The sedum genus includes about 600 species, all different colors, sizes, and shapes. 

8. Verbena

Purple verbena flowers growing in clusters

Verbena flowers grow in tight clusters.

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Verbena flowers are renowned for their extremely long bloom times, drought resistance, and citrusy fragrance. These small blooms usually come in purple, pink, white, and red — perfect for a colorful fall bouquet. 

9. Aster

Purple aster flowers blooming over the top of a wooden fence

Asters are somewhat frost-resistant.

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Aster flowers got their name from the ancient Greek word for star, a reference to their celestial appearance. These flowers usually come in hues of magenta, purple, and indigo. Asters are also well known to temporarily resist frost through early winter. 

10. Pansy

A field of purple, white, and yellow pansy flowers

Pansies come in a wide variety of color combinations.

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With their heart-shaped “faces,” pansies are one of the most popular, whimsical, and colorful flowers. Depending on the region you live in, pansies can be annual or perennial but are hardy in hot and cold weather. These flowers are a great colorful addition to any autumn garden. 

11. Russian sage

A Russian sage plant

Russian sage doesn’t need to be watered frequently.

agatchen/Getty Images


The Russian sage flower is quite similar in appearance and fragrance to lavender, making it a favorite for the spring and fall seasons. This flower’s preference for dry conditions is also perfect for those who often forget to water their plants and flowers. 

Insider’s takeaway

Whether you’re looking to start your flower garden, grow your current one, or just pick out some flowers for a homemade bouquet, these fall flowers can bring some much-needed color and drama to the grayness of autumn. As blooms that will hold up in crisp fall temperatures and generally need less water, these 11 options will flourish from summer to fall, offering a bit of extra life during the cooler months. 

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