Spruce up your landscaping with colors of Autumn

While Florida may not be a tourist attraction for fall colors like New England is,  we can still satisfy our longing for stunning "fall color" in our landscapes through a strategic use of tropical foliage plants. Spruce up your Florida landscaping with colors of Autumn.You can capture all of Autumn's reds, oranges, yellows and browns by knowing what to plant. With proper planning, you can then carry over and transform your fall display through Christmas and even Valentine's day.

To begin in the fall, consider the always popular crotons or coleus. Typically, Crotons grow up to 4-6 feet high and provide a lasting burst of color to your landscape. Use coleus to add a beautiful kaleidoscope of classic fall hues. These will vary in height from 12-36 inches.

A herbaceous perennial that comes in a stunning array of reds and greens reminiscent of northern climates are Cordylines. Paired with Heliconia oranges and yellows, the combination works perfectly for a fall display.  Incorporate Dracaena marginal for a backdrop of colorful, long leaves. At full maturity, these specimens can reach 10-12 feet tall, but they're easily maintained at 6-8 feet with proper pruning. Dracaena prefers well-drained soils and adapts to light conditions ranging from shade to full sun.

For midlevel color with spiky foliage ranging from orange to brown, you'll want to add bromeliads. Reaching a maximum height of only 2-3 feet, these plants  thrive in our tropical climate. Most varieties of bromeliads grow beautifully within a beautiful shady spot within the landscape. One type of bromeliad is called Guzmania. It provides brilliant splashes of "autumn-rescue" reds, oranges and yellows. Combined with the touches of reds and greens found in the bromeliad called Neoregelia your landscape can quickly be taken from Autumn right over into the holiday season with months of striking color and natural care.

One of the greatest things about all of these tropicals is that they can either be added straight into your garden or placed in containers to decorate patios, porches, and entranceways. To transform from Autumn to Christmas and even Valentine's day, all you need to do is swap out your orange and yellow selections with plants bursting with hues of reds and whites.

So whether you put your plants in the ground or into pots - for gorgeous bursts of fall color, now is the time to do it! Enjoy discovering the beauty of autumn with the colors these tropical foliage and flowers provide. Add a fun, decorative scarecrow, a couple of pumpkins and voilà – instant fall, right here in Florida!

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What Your Neighbors Are Saying About Mansfield Landscaping

We would like to thank you and the crew of Mansfield Landscaping for the fine work done at our home. As with the previous work you have done for us, we were extremely pleased. It is unfortunate that it is so difficult to find people these days who take pride and ownership in their work and can be relied upon to do a job well. The Mansfield Landscaping crew was professional, dependable and timely. The hard work you and your crew gave to the project is commendable. The trees, plants and design you suggested have added beauty to our home.

If you ever need recommendations, feel free to use us as a reference.

Steve and Brandee Sullivan (Orlando)

Steve Mansfield and his crew are the best. Our fantastic landscaping was done in August. I happened to be in the front yard recently when Steve drove by. He stopped and asked how everything was going. His crew will wave when they go by. They do great work and are also very nice friendly people. We are really glad we had Mansfield as our landscaper!

Anonymous (The Villages)

I just had my entire landscape done by Steve Mansfield of Mansfield Landscaping. He did an excellent job, they had a huge job in front on them, because I have styled my scape closer to "up north" look because of the style of my house. Lots of plants, trees and loads of color flowers. This requires constant maintenance, on my part, which I love but not in the heat we had this summer. Consequently, it was overgrown, weedy, and not pretty. Steve and his crew came in, redid each bed, added more rock and/or mulch, and put in a few new colored plants for me. He also trimmed existing trees and shrubs and I'm very picky on what I like, and they did exactly as I requested. This is the 2nd time I've used Steve and I would HIGHLY recommend him.

KathieI (www.talkofthevillages.com)

My husband and I had been driving around for weeks looking at various landscape jobs in the villages and found just one place that we both really loved. We happened to be looking through Nursery web-sites and in looking at the photo gallery we happened to see pictures of the house that we loved under Mansfield's Web site. So we decided to go to the nursery to see what trees they had and how their prices were...(after going to a couple of other local nurseries we were shell shocked at the price of palms!) What we found was a great relief! The tree and plant prices were very reasonable and looked much healthier than many we had seen at other places. Being complete novices to Florida plants we sat down with the owner, Steve, and he gave us a very thorough education on palm trees - so we felt confident in the decisions we were making. We had decided that we did not want to do the "FULL" landscaping job all at once and wanted to start with just the trees so we could then fill-in later as we decided on what we wanted to plant...Steve and his son Ron, then walked us throughout the selection and helped us decide on 9 beautiful 18 ft Palms which they gave us an excellent price on. We set up an installation date for later that week - and Steve called and said they could come a day earlier if that worked for us - which was great as we had company coming in the next day! Ron and a crew came out to do the install, finished the planting in one day, removed some bushes etc that we knew we didn't want and the end result is beautiful - it has changed the whole look of the house....we LOVE it! Even though this is only step one of our landscaping - we are certain that we are going to be using Mansfield for our future expansions!

Jim and Rachel Williamson

Thank you so much for replacing the plants in our yard that did not survive the winter. Everything looks so beautiful, and I am very grateful to you and your employees for doing such a wonderful job.

Mary Ann Flynn (The Villages)

The team from Mansfield just finished our front yard to include a walkway around our new golf cart garage. I must say that Sharon and I are very pleased with the end results. It was a bit difficult to visualize what the end would look like and my initial trepidation about the cost have been set aside. After seeing the amount of labor and materials required I can now fully understand the cost, in fact I think it was well worth every dollar we spent. John has a great eye and knows his way around the total job. We have some friends moving down from Baltimore and we will be recommending Mansfield to them. We are also a part of an open house tour within Mission Hills in mid November and believe me you will be receiving very favorable comments from us.

Kurt and Sharon Adams

Job completed Nov 2013. Outstanding quality plant materials,selection, and excellent workers! Steve and Ron were very helpful in the initially designed, listened to our wants, and came over to our new home to discuss the design. We picked and tagged our palm trees and other plants we liked by walking through his vast nursery. When the work began, he brought over may more plants for us to choose from. Amazing! His work team (we had 5 workers) worked well together, cooperative in moving plants round so we found the perfect mix and placement. Steve came in under budget and on time even though, he had two additional deliveries of pebbles for our beds because he wanted to do the job right! Highly recommended!

George S Gerstein