This is usually the time of year where customers phone in a panic wondering if it is too late to plant. Much to their surprise, I respond to them by saying they are too early – wait till September.
Why? It is more logical to plant in the Fall. By September, our weather changes from blistering heat and droughts to cooler temperatures and rain. This decreases the heat and water loss stresses on plants. Also, with the dropping of leaves there is less water loss since leaves are not transpiring. In the end, this equates to you not standing at the end of a watering hose everyday making sure your plantings are watered.
The most fascinating point about Fall planting is what happens below the ground. Ground temperatures stay at a constant 56F till December, depending on the weather. With the lack of activity above ground (no leaves photosynthesizing) the roots establish and grow undisturbed. By next spring, the roots are well anchored and the plant ready to burst into spring.
From a frugal point of view, the Fall is the best time to purchase. Most nurseries are down sizing their stock and usually great deals are to be had. So, bottom line, relax and wait for the Fall and then plant all those great deals.