Caring For Your Chrysanthemums

Chrysanthemums, or as they are commonly known as “mums,” are available in a wide range of colors except a true blue. There is a variety of types of mums, and to simplify their species, they are divided into two classes: garden and floral. Garden mums do best grown outdoors, while floral mums are typically a one-time house plant to brighten your fall decor.

Bred and designed in a greenhouse to flower just once, floral mums will not perform well in the garden and can be discarded at the end of the season. Fabulous in the fall, garden mums help to add a burst of color to the landscape when other flowers are out of season.

Place the plants in full sun to add longevity to the life of your mums, whether planting them in the ground or keeping them in a container. Water thoroughly 3x a week if they are planted in a garden. If they are kept in a planter, then you’ll have to water more frequently by watering every other day. To prevent shortening your mum's life span, try to avoid wilting of the plant.

The majority of mum varieties are considered delicate perennials and depending on the severity of the winter, they may not come back. Plant your mums in early fall to to try and over-winter your mums so that their roots have time to grow and create a stable root base. Keep watering your mums up until the first frost. After the first frost, apply a layer of mulch or straw around the base of plant to insulate for the winter. Remove the dead mum pieces and replace the old mulch in the spring once the mum begins growing. If you want your mum to bloom again in the fall, then continuously prune the mum growth throughout the summer to prevent buds from forming until late in the summer.

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