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Friday, October 24, 2014 Just for Fun!

Grow Spooky Halloween Plants

In the spirit of having fun with the autumn garden, why not try a few Halloween-themed plants this year? We've picked some of our favorites for a festive feel!

All the plants below look good and grow well in containers on your porch, deck, or patio -- right alongside pumpkins and other décor. Or, you can bring some of these inside, to add to your own haunted house! Try a few of these for a fun, floral twist to this Halloween:

Orange & Black Plants:
Obsidian coral bells (Heuchera ‘Obsidian’): There are a lot of cool coral bell varieties out there, but 'Obsidian' is one of the darkest. This wonderful mound-shaped evergreen (or everblack in this case) perennial is a must-have for anyone looking to join the dark side! USDA Hardiness Zones 4-9

Black Mondo Grass (Ophiopogon planiscapus 'Nigrescens'): This dark, shiny evergreen perennial brings the color of midnight to the garden, with a luminescent sheen. Black mondo grass looks as if the moon is always shining on its leaves: perfect for Halloween! USDA Hardiness Zones 4-9

Emily Mckenzie Crocosmia (Crocosmia ‘Emily Mckenzie’): This wonderful perennial sports fabulous grass-like foliage followed by pumpkin-orange flowers in late summer and fall that have hummingbirds going nuts for them! USDA Hardiness Zones 6-9
 
Plants with Wicked Thorns
Marionberry (Rubus): This thorny plant is perfect for Halloween decorating because the stems are covered in spines. Very scary! It also features tasty black berries that make it supremely useful to the home gardener. USDA Hardiness Zones 5-9

Firethorn (Pyracantha): Loaded with bright orange berries loved by birds, firethorn also sports thick 2-inch-long thorns. This scary plant is ideal for using as an attractive privacy screen. Grown up a fence, it creates a virtually impenetrable barrier. It might even be better than a guard dog! USDA Hardiness Zones 6-9

 Plants with Spooky Names
Diablo Ninebark (Physocarpus ‘Monlo’): The devil himself wouldn’t be able to hate this wonderful plant! It has beautiful velvety black foliage with bright white spring flowers, peeling winter bark! If you don’t have this shrub, you're missing out on one of the greatest plants in the world! And if you don't have room for a 12- by 12-foot shrub, try its dwarf sibling Little Devil. USDA Hardiness Zones 2-8

Black Lace Elderberry (Sambucus nigra ‘Eva’): Lace foliage colored midnight black is this cool plant’s specialty. It grows to about 8-10 feet tall and wide, and makes for a spectacular specimen, not just because of its foliage but because of its gorgeous pink springtime flower clusters as well as its pure black berries. USDA Hardiness Zones 4-7

Ghost Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum 'Ukigumo’): For a ghastly specimen tree, why not try Ukigumo Japanese Maple? “Ukigumo” in Japanese, translates to “Floating Cloud,” though many gardeners refer to it as ghost maple because of its white leaves that droop down, looking like a million tiny ghosts hanging from the tree! USDA Hardiness Zones 6-8
 
Ghost Fern (Athyrium 'Ghost’): A stunner for the shade garden, Ghost fern shows off gray-green leaves heavily marked with silver and flushed with burgundy-purple. The plant shows especially well at dusk when the silvery sheen seems to make the plant glow. USDA Hardiness Zones 4-8

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