Fall Container and Planting Ideas: 10 Bewitching Halloween plant palettes

Fall Container and Planting Ideas: 10 Bewitching Halloween plant palettes

Photography by Doreen Wyja
fall container beside pumpkins and fern in front of a whitewashed door

Photography by Doreen Wyja

If you're ready to take your fall decor up a notch, then come with us. We're having some fun with moody plant combos that are perfect for fall containers as well as beds and borders. Join us as we have some fun with beautiful plants. In order to re-imagine the different ways we can celebrate the magic and mystery of longer nights and cooler temperatures.

We've conjured up unexpected ideas for everyone in Zones 4-11. So, you're sure to find something that sparks creativity this season. No matter whether you're celebrating the falling leaves, cooler temperatures, rainy season, Halloween, Samhain, or Dia de Los Muertos.

Not sure what your growing zone is? Find out here. 

Remember to share your fun fall containers with us on social media. Tag us @MonroviaPlants, and have your post shared by using #MyMonrovia. 

6 Fall Plant Combo Ideas for Zones 4-9

Forbidden Forest

As Seen Above, Partial Sun/Shade

Ruby Tuesday

Exceptionally ruffled leaves emerge ruby red, aging to a deep merlot frosted with silver. Prolific amounts of petite white flowers are held above the foliage in early spring. Striking as an accent or massed and provides great color contrast in mixed containers. Partial shade to full sun. Up to 9" tall, 14" wide.  Zones 4-9.

Golden Japanese
Forest Grass

A graceful, colorful groundcover for shaded borders and container gardens. Slender stems holding bright yellow leaves with thin green stripes create a tiny bamboo-like effect. Foliage becomes pink-tinged as the weather cools in autumn. Partial shade or sun. Up to 18" tall and wide.  Zones 4-9.

Western Sword

One of the most robust and reliable. This hardy native male fern offers superb texture with glossy, leathery, toothed, dark green foliage. Vigorous evergreen clumps are formed by many long fronds; up to four feet long in cool, shady sites. Full shade to partial sun. Forms clumps 3-6' tall and wide. Zone 5-9.

Dark and Stormy Night

Partial Sun/Shade

Regal Red Japanese
Painted Fern

Striking violet-red fronds are contrasted by bright silver edges, giving this magnificent fern an overall tapestry effect. The fronds are an outstanding addition to cut flower arrangements, providing lasting color and soft texture. Great for use in containers and as a houseplant. Full to partial shade. Up to 24" tall and wide. Zones 4-9.

Sirens' Song™ Dark
Night Heuchera

A mesmerizing new coral bells with deep purple-red, sun-tolerant foliage. Magnificent sprays of reddish pink blooms will lure hummingbirds to the garden in late spring. The ruffled purple-red leaves add stunning depth to gardens and mixed containers. Partial shade or sun. Up to 18" tall, and 15" wide. Zones 4-9.

Black Mondo

Stunning contrast for the front of the border with exceptional, dense, purple-black, grass-like foliage. Produces dark lavender flowers in summer that are followed by purple berries in fall, creating additional interest in the landscape. Use en masse as edging, or tuck into mixed containers. Partial to full sun. Up to 6" tall and wide. Zones 5-10.

Dark Magic

Full Sun

Smoke Bush

A dwarf form of the beloved "Royal Purple' cultivar, perfectly proportioned for smaller gardens. Forms a small, rounded, deciduous shrub with all of the color and interest of its larger cousin. Frothy plumes of pink flowers bloom in summer. Oval leaves turn shades of bright orange, coral, and red in the fall.  Partial to full sun. Up to 4' tall and wide. Zones 4-8.

Krebs Desert Bloom
Hens And Chicks

This handsome, mounding succulent adds exotic texture and color wherever it is featured. Foliage coloration can fluctuate with green and deep purple-red tones seasonally. Clumping rosettes make an excellent waterwise groundcover when planted en masse. Well-suited to containers and rock gardens. Full sun. Up to 8" tall, 12" wide. Zones 4-9.

Dark Magic

Big, deep pink flower clusters bloom on short, upright stems of glossy, purple-black foliage from late summer into fall. A wonderfully unique addition to sunny garden beds, adding late-season color. Waterwise, easy-care, and loved by pollinators. Full sun. Up to 20" tall, 15" wide. Zones 4-9.

Witches' Brew

Full Sun

Big Bluestem

A dramatic vertical accent that changes color throughout the growing season. Foliage emerges green, then develops red-bronze hues towards the tips in summer. The color continues to darken to deep purple until almost black in fall. Purple plumes appear in late summer. Full sun. Up to 2' wide with plumes that reach 4-8' tall. Zones 3-9.

Evolution™ Chocolate
Fountain Sedum

Bred for strong basal branching with compact stems that do not fall open. This delectable sedum produces a dense mound with multiple crowns of attractive, dark chocolate-colored, succulent foliage. This is salted with pretty rose-pink blooms in the summer. Adds depth to borders, rock gardens, and container plantings. Partial to full sun. Up to 15" tall and wide. Zones 4-9.

Old Man's Bones

A classic waterwise groundcover with rounded, bronze-tinged, green foliage. Clusters of yellow, star-shaped summer blooms attract butterflies. Perfect for rock gardens, containers, or tucked into stone pathways and walls. Evergreen in mild winter regions. Full sun. Up to 4" tall, 12" wide. Zones 3-9.

Pumpkins and Caramel Apples

Partial to Full Sun

Magic Carpet

A neat, compact, mounded shrub with vibrant red new leaves. Clusters of small pink flowers contrast with bright gold mature foliage that turns rich russet red in fall. This extraordinary combination of colors will brighten and enhance any landscape. Full sun. Up to 24" tall and wide. Zones 4-9.


New leaves emerge bright gold and mature to peachy orange. The soft but showy color adds warmth and contrast to mixed containers and borders. Thrives in the high heat and humidity of the South. Sun tolerant in cool northern gardens. Partial to full sun. Up to 14" tall, 18" wide. Zones 4-9.

Fire Chief™
Globe Arborvitae

A nearly perfectly globe-shaped shrub with fine, bright gold spring foliage and fantastic deep red fall color. This sport of the popular Rheingold has a deeper color and is less prone to splitting. A slow-growing, low-maintenance evergreen. Full sun. Up to 2' tall and wide. Zones 5-8

Trick or Treat

Partial to full shade

Autumn Fern

This handsome coppery red selection is brighter red and significantly more dramatic than others in the species. Leaves mature to deeply cut, dark green. Easy to grow and adaptable to drier soils in cool, shaded locations. Partial to full shade. Up to 24" tall, 18" wide. Zones 4-9

Chocolate Shogun

Exquisite and dramatic, the very dark purple-brown, serrated foliage and pale pinkish white plumes command attention in the landscape. More sun tolerant than other species of astilbe, but does best in a shade setting. Partial to full shade. Up to 40" tall, 24" wide. Zones 4-8.

Northern Exposure™
Amber Heuchera

Brilliant, amber-colored, rounded leaves with fluted edges form a tidy, dense mound. Superb, long-lasting foliage, rust resistance, and longevity due to hardy parentage. Outstanding color for borders and mixed containers. Full shade to part sun. Up to 13" tall, 20" wide. Zones 4-9.

4 Halloween and Fall Plant Combo Ideas for Zones 7-11

Flickering Candlelight

Full sun

Orange New
Zealand Sedge

Finely textured, bronze-green leaves age to electric orange in the cool season. The elegant, arching, mounding form is a beautiful evergreen garden accent. It's ideal for containers, massing in borders, or spilling over rocks. Deer and rabbit resistant.
Partial shade to full sun. Up to 24" tall and wide. Zones 6-10.


A colorful, versatile evergreen shrub with orange-red new growth that holds its color through summer. A great alternative to boxwoods for lean, rocky soils, with a tidy, mounding habit that shears well into a hedge. Also attractive in natural form. Not intended for edible berry production. Full sun. Up to 4' tall and wide. Zones 7-10.

Fountain Grass

An attractive grass highlighted by fluffy, buff-colored plumes that arch above the lush, green fountain of foliage. In the fall, the foliage turns a lovely golden russet color. Creates a terrific contrast when used among shrubs or as a backdrop in a perennial bed. Full sun. Up to 3' tall, 2' wide. Zones 4-11.

Dia de Los Muertos

Full sun


A compact, tightly branched evergreen shrub with glossy foliage that turns bright red in fall. Spring brings fragrant white flowers. Foliage is fragrant when crushed or sheared. A colorful, drought-tolerant option. Full sun. Up to 4' tall and wide. Zones 8-10.

Fountain Grass

A popular drought-tolerant grass that forms a tidy, dense clump of purplish maroon blades topped with rose-red plumes. Unlike the species, this cultivar does not reseed. An herbaceous perennial grass in mild winter regions; provides quick annual color in any climate. Full sun. Up to 4' tall, 2' wide. Zones 8-11.

Rhubarb and
Custard Hebe

Enjoy the evolution of foliage color throughout the year with this small evergreen shrub. New growth emerges purple while mature leaves feature green centers with creamy white edges that blush pink in cooler weather. Winter brings a flush of red. Partial to full sun. Up to 2' tall and wide. Zones 8-11.

The Witching Hour

Partial to full sun

orange indigo pearl new zealand flax foliage

Indigo Pearl™
New Zealand Flax

Outstanding foliage with dark plum centers and creamy pink outer edges. The sturdy, stiff leaves stay upright for less flopping. Use to add dramatic interest as an accent, specimen, or container plant. Partial to full sun. Up to 4' tall and wide. Zones 8-11.


Large rosettes of fleshy, variegated leaves on thick, bare stems. The green, yellow and creamy white foliage develops coppery red tips in full sun. Pale yellow flowers appear mid-winter to early spring on mature plants. Partial to full sun. 2' tall and wide. Zones 9-11.


A stunning accent for low-water landscapes or containers. Big rosettes of powdery lavender-pink-tinged leaves nearly glow in the garden. Orange-red flowers can emerge from below lower leaves, or sometimes as a terminal flower stem. Partial to full sun. Forms rosettes that teach 1-2' tall and wide. Zones 9-11.

Haunted House(plants)

Rubber Plant

An exciting, darkly dramatic variety of a classic houseplant. New leaves emerge from the top of the plant in a spike-shape. It's covered with a bright red sheath for an extra splash of color. Can easily be kept to a small size to fit your space. Or, let grow into a tall statement plant to add a tropical accent to a room. Bright indirect light. Up to 6' tall, 2' wide. Zones 10-11 (or grow indoors).


Royal Hawaiian® Black
Coral Elephant Ear

Very striking, large, glossy, jet-black foliage contrasts spectacularly with bright-colored plants. Adds bold color and tropical flair to any garden. Highly effective at the edge of a pond or water garden. A dramatic choice for patio containers. Filtered to full sun. Up to 4' tall and wide. Zones 7-10 (or grow indoors).

Black Prince

A striking succulent that develops dark, nearly black rosettes. Comprised of fleshy, pointed leaves, and accented by salmon-red flowers in autumn and winter. Well-suited to containers, both indoors and out. Partial to full sun. Rosettes reach 4-10" tall and wide. Zones 9-11 (or grow indoors).

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2023-10-09 18:05:00