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5 Shrubs to Plant in the Fall for Spring Color

3 min read | Oct 5, 2023 | Plants 

Fall is a great time to plant shrubs in North Carolina, as it offers several advantages for successful plant establishment and growth. Newly planted trees and shrubs will put energy into promoting root growth. which will ensure they are well established and ready to explode with new growth during the spring!

Here in NC, we have plenty of time to add shrubs to our landscape.   We are sharing our top 5 shrubs to plant in the fall for an explosion of color in the spring.


You’ll do a double take when you see this quince that looks like a camellia. Double Take Scarlet puts on a spectacular early spring display of large red, double flowers. The Double Take quinces are more than just pretty spring flowers: thornless and deer-resistant, they do not produce fruit, and once established, are drought-tolerant survivalists. Developed by Dr. Tom Ranney and his team at the Mountain Horticultural Crops Research & Extension Center in beautiful North Carolina, the Double Take quinces are sure to brighten spring landscapes across the United States.  This quince also comes in Orange, Pink, and Peach.


Bright yellow early spring flowers. Improved flower display compared to older varieties. Compact. Deer resistant. Good for cut displays. Heat Tolerant.   Show Off Variety can reach 6’, but Show Off Starlet and Show Off Sugar Baby are much smaller.  If you want the large old fashioned variety, we carry Lynwood Gold.


We have strong growing varieties with outstanding form, flowers and foliage. Most loropetalum have cool purple foliage with a cranberry undercurrent. It combines beautifully with the hot pink blooms. You can get showy little dwarf plants that fit easily into residential landscapes or larger varieties that grow up to 6’ tall.

Camellia japonica

Common Japanese Camellia (Camellia japonica) is a broadleaved, evergreen shrub, which may grow to a height of 25 feet, but more often to 6 to 12 feet. It has a spread of 6 to 10 feet. The dark-green leathery leaves are 4 inches long. The flowers, which range in color from white to pink and red, are 3 to 5 inches in diameter.  We carry many varieties.

Encore Azaleas

These Azaleas are evergreens that bloom three times a year, are available in 31 cultivars in an array of colors (everything from red to white to lavender), and are now widely considered among the best to grow. They also have strong root systems, are winter-hardy and pest tolerant, and establish quickly. 

Shrubs planted in the fall typically have well-established root systems by the time spring arrives. This can lead to a burst of new growth and foliage in the spring, as the shrubs are ready to take full advantage of the warming weather and longer daylight hours. Proper site selection, soil preparation, and post-planting care, including mulching and watering as needed, are also crucial for the success of your shrubs when planting in the fall or any other season.