Shrubs With Fall Interest For Williamsburg, Virginia

oakleaf hydrangea

Good design does not stop at the property line. A well-designed landscape integrates with surrounding landscapes and with the greater the region. One key to achieving this integration is to allow the landscape to vary with the seasons. Too often we see landscapes that are overly dependent on evergreens. Evergreens can keep the landscape static throughout the year and, at worst, make it stick out like a sore thumb.

red chokeberry

Red chokeberry (Aronia arbutifolia) – Beautiful red foliage and berries. Berries persist into early winter and are attractive to birds.

virginia sweetspire

Virginia sweetspire (Itea virginica ‘Henry’s Garnet’) – A spreading shrub that can be used as a ground cover. Fall color is various shades of red.

oakleaf hydrangea

Oakleaf hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) – Showy white flowers from summer will persist and slowly turn pink and then bronze. Leaves turn multiple shades of dark red to orange to yellow. Exfoliating bark takes over and carries the show all winter.

Winged euonymus (Euonymus alantus ‘Compacta’) – Also referred to as Burning-bush euonymus. Excellent red fall color. However, is considered invasive because of its tendency to sprout prolifically from seeds. We’ve moved away from specifying this plant for that reason.

Other plants you might enjoy include the following (please see our Plant Library for pictures):

  • Coralbells
    • Purple
    • Tiramisu
  • Oak leaf hydrangea
  • Winterberry holly
    • Sparkleberry
    • Winter red
  • Henry’s Garnet Virginia Sweetspire, Virginia Sweet
  • Dwarf Virginia Sweetspire
  • Blue lyme grass
  • Spicebush (can be hard to locate)
  • Coral honeysuckle
    • Alabama crimson
  • Pink muhly grass
  • Salvia luecantha (may not overwinter but can be used as an annual)
  • Persimmon (fruits in the fall)
  • Goldenrods (“Fireworks”)
  • Virginia creeper –(red fall color and blue berries)
  • Asters
  • Grasses (fountain grass and switchgrass)
  • Jeruselum artichoke
  • Beauty berry (purple fruit)
  • Yaupon holly (red fruit)
  • Maryland golden aster
  • Fothergilla (bright fall leaf color)
  • Spanish flag (annual vine with bright flowers, probably would have to be grown from seed)
  • Witchhazel (fall blooms)
  • Indian currant (purple berries, available from the Colonial Williamsburg nursery)
  • Sasanqua camellia (late fall blooms)
  • Nellie stevens and burford hollies
  • Fortunes Osmanthus and Holly tea olive (fragrant blooms)
  • Poet’s laurel (beautiful orange fruit, but can be expensive and hard to locate)

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