20 Photos from Martha's Homes That Will Get You Excited for Fall
It's hard saying goodbye to summer: Once the season is over, we miss the lush greenery, alfresco dinners, trips to the beach, and the time spent relaxing under the sun. After Labor Day comes and goes, there's an exciting back to school, back to business spirit in the air, but we think it's also important to take some time to embrace the actual change in seasons. To help you welcome the arrival of fall, we're turning to Martha for all of our autumnal inspiration.
And who better to inspire our own fall decorating than our founder? Martha's homes are a testament to her love of this stunning season; she even made sure she'd have a front-row seat to the spectacular sight of leaves changing colors each year at her Bedford, New York, farm. There, she planted thousands of trees whose transformation from forest greens to vibrant reds, oranges, and yellows is breathtaking during the season. (She often posts pictures of them on her Instagram account or blog.) It's enough to get you planning your own leaf-peeping excursion.
Of course, any Martha fan knows that she takes holidays very seriously. "Celebrations are my favorite," she recently said in an interview at the ANC Leadership Forum. "Whatever event is taking place you can make it even more special." And her favorite event, by far, is Halloween. "From the time I was a little girl, I have loved dressing up for Halloween," Martha revealed in the October 2018 issue of Living. Over the years, her awe-inspiring costumes have included a Spellbinding Sorceress and Fairy GrandMartha.
Then, there's preparing for and hosting the most memorable dinner of the year: Thanksgiving. The ultimate homemaker, Martha's own festive parties are inspiration enough to get us excited about decorating for upcoming gatherings, but she takes things one step further by also inspiring us to enhance our soirée food and drink offerings. From delicious pies and tarts to thoughtful centerpieces, there are no shortage of ideas to make our own.
It's not all glamorous, however; as evidenced by Martha herself, there's plenty of work to be done in the garden and inside to maintain a well-kept home during the fall months. Enjoy this glimpse of Martha's home during fall and gear up for a fun season ahead.
Take in the Trees
Martha loves to capture the natural beauty of her property using a drone, and that's especially true when fall colors are on full display. This shot, which was taken using a DJI multirotor Mavic Pro, showcases early autumn color at her farm and beyond.
Appreciate the Leaves
A closer look reveals a rainbow of colors from the Japanese maples Martha planted around her Bedford, New York, farm. The grove features varieties of Acer palmatum, which were planted in honor of Martha's late sister, Laura Plimpton. "I just love these trees," Martha writes in her blog. "They provide countless variations in size, leaf shape, and color, creating a landscape of beauty and texture."
Admire the Glorious Gingko
The gorgeous gingko tree in Martha's Summer House garden is 250 years old. In the fall, it turns from green to an arresting gold-yellow. The coolest part? Once the cold frost hits, the tree sheds its leaves all at once.
Fall's seasonal delights aren't all pumpkin lattes. Martha's own apple grove at her Bedford farm, which produce an abundance of fruit, will convince you to make apple picking a priority this season. "I looked into cider making as an alternative to pies, crisps, and pink applesauce," Martha wrote in the October 2018 issue of Living.
Sip the Season
Martha knows that it's often better to keep things simple. "Today I produce all kinds of things from the cider we press: drinks like bourbon sours and hot mulled and hard cider; braised chicken; and even apple-cider vinegar. But it's also always delicious enjoyed simply: icy cold on a brilliant fall day," she says about her homemade cider.
Give Hedges a Trim
Martha's elegant boxwood hedges are one of the defining features of her farm. When she designed the landscape almost two decades ago she started by laying out these shrubs. Every autumn, you'll find Martha and her crew trimming and pruning her hedges.
Tackle Garden Chores
In addition to mulching, planting bulbs, and bringing outdoor furniture indoors each fall, Martha makes sure that her warm-weather plants, such as her citrus trees and agave, are transported indoors to her greenhouse. "Fortunately, I am able to keep them in high-grade greenhouses, where they can continue to thrive all year long," Martha writes on her blog. She says her strong outdoor grounds crew is responsible for moving the plants safely inside before the autumn chill sets in.
Enjoy Fall Blooming Prennials
Martha's gardens continue to bloom with the pretty fall perennial, Colchicum. You'll find these cheerful flowers—with fuchsia and soft lilac blooms—around her Bedford farm.
Put Nature on Display
Martha loves her wrought-iron plant stand (she found hers at a country auction years ago, but you can order a similar one from her QVC collection). Come fall, the stand acts as the perfect pumpkin holder.
Get in the Spirit
Halloween is one of Martha's favorite holidays, so as you can expect, she really gets into the spirit. "I always love to decorate the front entrance to my farm in preparation for all the little ghosts and goblins that go trick or treating on All Hallows' Eve," she says on her blog. One quintessential decoration: pumpkins—grown on her farm, of course!—lined up along the front stone wall.
Give Them Chills
Let the Dogs in on the Fun
Martha isn't the only one in a fabulous costume for Halloween. Her Frenchies make the most adorable dinosaurs.
Bring the Outside In
Make Celebrations Memorable
Martha approaches each party as an opportunity to treat guests to a completely different experience than the previous year. For one Thanksgiving at her Bedford home, which was featured in Martha's Entertaining: A Year of Celebrations she went for a rustic theme using Spode turkey plates and platters and an antique runner. "Warty squash, pomegranates, Amy Goldman's cast bronze squashes, and some old copper birds all made a wild and natural landscape down the middle of the long marble dining table," she shared in Living.
Delight the Kids
Once Martha's grandchildren, Jude and Truman, were able to sit at the table, she knew she needed to adjust her approach to Thanksgiving. Instead of a big dinner, Martha hosted a more intimate gathering of family and friends in the Tenant House at her farm in Bedford. But this doesn't mean she toned down the thought and effort that goes into one of her extravagant tablescapes. "With the help of crafts editor Marcie McGoldrick, we devised a method for casting numerous turkeys from a material called PermaStone, a lightweight, durable cement," Martha shared in Living. These turkey sculptures lined the table (and were even used to create place card holders) for a whimsical effect.
Stick to the Theme
For the same Thanksgiving dinner, Martha enhanced the turkey sculpture effect with these adorable and delicious candies made from milk and semisweet chocolates.
An intimate look at Martha's Winter House kitchen the day before Thanksgiving last year reveals Martha and Molly Wenk, a food stylist and chef who contributes to Martha Bakes as well as our Frosted series, working on pies for the festivities. We also can't get enough of Martha's collection of gorgeous copper pots.
An 18-foot long dining table was set up in the Brown Room for Martha's Thanksgiving celebration last year, but she always plans ahead for last-minute guests, too. Two additional tables were also set in the smaller dinning room. "One tip is to always be prepared for extra guests just in case someone decides to bring another along," says the entertaining expert on her blog.
Notice the Details
Martha has fun with her holiday table: A formal table setting is juxtaposed with whimsical gold turkey statues, Staffordshire turkey plates, and an adorable turkey-inspired napkin fold.
Huddle Around a Fire
Cap the night with laughs around a fire. Martha has two fire pits at her Bedford property. These aren't just regular fire pits, but gigantic vintage iron sugar kettles. Talk about conversation piece! "Sugar kettles were used on 19th century Louisiana plantations for the production of sugar. Sugar cane was placed in the large, spherical vessels and cooked down to make syrup. Because they could withstand such high heat, they were also used for cooking," Martha explains on her blog. The best part: They're light enough to move to any location on the farm.