En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?


Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
rate this answer
1 rating

Friday - April 06, 2012

From: Valley Mills, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation, Wildflowers
Title: Flowers for Fall in Bosque County from Valley Mills TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford


What Wildflowers could we plant in Bosque County area to bloom in the Fall?


It's getting a little late to be planting wildflowers even for Fall bloom, but we will try to find some for you to try. Ordinarily, we recommend that wildflower seeds be planted at the same time that the flowers in the wild drop their seeds. Perennials will not bloom until the second season, anyway, so you are talking annuals. Annuals grow and bud quickly, when the weather is cooperating, bloom and set seeds. Once those seeds are dropped, the plant has finished with its Prime Directive, which is to reproduce, and ordinarily the plant then dies. Hopefully, the next year, the seeds left in the ground from the previous season will come up in greater numbers, and go through the same procedure.

From our online list Wildflowers of Central Texas  we will look at the sidebar on the righthand side of the page and select on bloom times of September, October and November. You can follow each plant link to our webpage on that plant. Sometimes, there are directions on how and when to plant seeds. We will check them to see if we can find out if any can be planted by the end of April and you can hope to have flowers by Fall.

If you are planning a Fall wedding, a garden at the background, your best chance is to purchase bedding plants and get them in the ground now. If your thought was just to begin a Fall garden, then you can plant seeds of any of these in November or thereabouts and the annuals will bloom in the Fall of 2013, while the perennials will bloom in 2014. Some perennials can be propagated by cuttings of existing plants in November and would probably begin to bloom the next year.

The plants that bloom in the Fall have usually been blooming since March to May, which means this is NOT their seeding time. There were exactly 2 annuals that fit the bill: Rudbeckia hirta (Black-eyed susan), which blooms from June to October and Eustoma exaltatum (Catchfly prairie gentian), blooming from May to October. This means that those plants are very likely up, after putting out their seeds probably in November.

Perennials for a Fall garden:

Asclepias asperula (Spider milkweed) - blooms March to October 

Calylophus berlandieri (Berlandier's sundrops blooms March to September

Commelina erecta (Whitemouth dayflower) - March to October

Glandularia bipinnatifida (Purple prairie verbena) - May to October

Lobelia cardinalis (Cardinal flower) - May to October

Melampodium leucanthum (Blackfoot daisy) - March to November

Ratibida columnifera (Mexican hat) - May to October

Salvia farinacea (Mealy blue sage) - April to October


From the Image Gallery

Black-eyed susan
Rudbeckia hirta

Catchfly prairie gentian
Eustoma exaltatum

Antelope horns
Asclepias asperula

Berlandier's sundrops
Calylophus berlandieri

Whitemouth dayflower
Commelina erecta

Purple prairie verbena
Glandularia bipinnatifida

Cardinal flower
Lobelia cardinalis

Blackfoot daisy
Melampodium leucanthum

Mexican hat
Ratibida columnifera

More Wildflowers Questions

Wildflower gardening for Henderson Co. TX
August 10, 2009 - We purchased some of the Lady Bird's Legacy Wild Flower Mix and the Hummers and Singers to plant on Ranch in East Texas, Henderson County, that has Sandy Loam Soil. We would like to plant the seeds i...
view the full question and answer

Wildflowers for West Texas Permian Basin area
March 19, 2007 - What wild flowers grow out here in West Texas (Permian Basin Area)? I know a lot of the wild flowers from other parts of the state will not grow out here in the dry heat and poor soil. Thanks for you...
view the full question and answer

Should I transplant my bluebonnets from the planter they came into soil in Austin?
April 10, 2009 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Since moving to Austin two years ago I have fallen in love with bluebonnets. Last year I purchased seedlings from the Wildflower Center but a taste-first-evaluate-later inquis...
view the full question and answer

Texas native wildflowers viable in Michigan
May 14, 2005 - Can you tell me what wildflowers native to Texas would also thrive in Michigan?? I'd like to surprise a "transplant".
view the full question and answer

Flowering plant for gravesite in Weatherford TX
June 23, 2013 - I want to plant flowering plant of some kind at parent's grave site in Weatherford, TX. The family cemetery is on a limestone hill with no irrigation or ability to water other than nature. Would on...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center