Fabulous Fall Front Porches


by Jodi Kinesporch 3 - chair

With cooler temperatures in the air and leaves beginning to change, there is no doubt that Fall is officially here. As Mother Nature unveils her new seasonal palette, it’s natural to want to spread that new Fall feeling throughout our homes. What better place to begin than the front porch? It’s the perfect spot for marrying the bold, rich colors and textures of the great outdoors with a warm, inviting welcome into your personal space!
Let Mother Nature be your inspiration! 
Selecting a Fall color palette is as simple as looking at the trees around you and seasonal decorating is a great time to experiment with color that may otherwise overwhelm or intimidate a more neutral palette. Grab large planters, urns or even pails and pile them high with small pumpkins in a rainbow of warm orange hues, even mix in some golden yellows and deep greens with harvest gourds and winter squash for added texture and unique shapes. Add a nearby stack of larger pumpkins, from the more common bright orange field pumpkin to the more muted, softer (almost-frosted) tones of the Cinderella pumpkin. For some added height, layer in some stacked straw bails or even large bundles of moss-covered twigs or wheat grass nestled in pots or urns. Pots and pails of mums and ornamental fountain grasses also add a wonderful pop of color and texture. Early in the Fall season, pails of rich red apples would even add a wonderful splash of color. Use these jewel tone colors as inspiration in your other Fall décor, including festive wreathes adorned with raffia, burlap or ribbon.
porch3Bring the inside out! 
Your front porch is your guests’ first impression of you, your family, and your personal home, so you want it to be warm, welcoming, and inviting both to those that just pass by for an evening stroll on the sidewalk and friends and family that stop in for a visit. The rich, warm color palette of Fall is a great starting point. Continue that feeling of warmth by bringing some of your more ‘indoor’ accessories out on to the porch. Even if you don’t have a huge space to decorate, add a small accent table or wooden chair for added surface area and height. Top the table with the warm glow of a lamp or flameless candles and accent the chair with an small pillow or even an old quilt. Add a throw rug, layered under a door mat for added texture and softness.
Get the most bang for your decorating dollar!
For a porch-scape that lasts from late September through early December, start with a strictly-Fall-themed backdrop of ‘holiday neutral’ items such as potted plants, bales of straw and pumpkin-filled urns. Then add in ‘holiday-themed’ accents as the season passes. Pails of apples offer a back-to-school, September feeling. Then, as Halloween approaches, you can simply replace the pails of apples for ghosts, goblins and googly-eyed pumpkins. Stretch your Fall porch even farther as you round out the season with cornucopias, Indian corn, and even a little turkey or two as Thanksgiving approaches at the end of November.porch2
Another way to stretch the decorating dollar is by properly selecting any live plants used in your porch-scape, including the ever-popular mum. Selecting the perfect plant for your porch can be tricky, but Peggy Long, Manager at Ford’s Seeds and Plants in Gastonia, shares some fabulous advice, “If you need something with lots of color (such as for a party or special event), you want to choose a mum with lots of already-open blooms. But if you simply want to get the maximum bloom-time out of a mum, choose one with buds just starting to open.” Once you’ve made the perfect selection, proper care will also prolong the life and bloom time. Peggy says, “Be sure that it gets plenty of light to keep the blooms opening up. When watering, be sure to water the soil, not the foliage; watering the foliage can create a disease that may ultimately kill the plant.”
Seasonal décor is always a favorite – one not having to be as committed to the ideas long-term and being able to experiment and try new fun ideas is intriguing to many of us! So, get creative, have some fun and let Mother Nature lead the way as you create a warm, welcoming fabulous Fall front porch to usher in, not only another season, but friends and family with whom to share it.