Gems of the Fall: Mums

Chrysanthemums (mums) are the gems of fall. The come in a variety of colors and provide instant shape, fullness and fall flair. Combine them with a bale of hay, pumpkins, grasses and all kinds of fall goodies for a true show-stopping display. 

Mums fill the gardening gap between the end of the warm-season bedding plants and the true beginning for cool-season varieties. You can plant them in the ground or in containers.

They perform well in full-partial sun. When they receive 6-8 hours of direct sun/day it's ideal. Water regularly. They like to stay moist, but not wet. Now is the ideal time to plant them because they need about 6 weeks to establish a good root system before winter.

Before planting, properly prepare the landscape bed. Select a site protected from the north wind and other windy areas. Plant mums about 2 feet apart from each other. When they are too close, leggy and upright growth are the results. After planting, apply fertilizer and water it in. Mulch. 

It's important to avoid overhead watering because it will split the mums. Water from the base. 

Deadhead regularly to encourage more blooms.

You can enjoy mums as normal perennials when following these notes. Remember that they will bloom according to the natural day length conditions, so will pop back up in late spring and fall. 

When they naturally die back, layer mulch on top of the root system 3-4’’ deep at the base. This will help in any freeze events we have.

-Keep soil moist through winter.

-Keep mulch fresh. 

-Maintain insect & disease management.

-Apply a slow release fertilizer in spring. 

Wait until early Spring to shear off dead branches and carefully remove the mulch. As the mum begins to grow, wait until branches are 6’’ tall and pinch 2’’ off the top. This will cause the plant to thicken. In mid-summer, maybe around July 4, pinch again and your mum will be all set for the fall blooming period. Never pinch after the middle of July to ensure buds set properly for fall blooming!

We have many colors available for a a "crown of jewels" in your yard! Learn more about the Autumn Fire variety here.