If you are starting your garden, or looking for some beautiful florals to fill your flower garden, chrysanthemums are a great option! Here is my complete guide for how to take care of mums in your garden.
(You might also like this Container Flower Garden Ideas post).
Hardy mums are a late-season blooming flower and are beautiful for the autumn season. While you may still be mourning the end of the summer bloom season, it’s time to get excited about fall and start growing mums!
Late summer is typically when other plants stop blooming, but fall is when mums shine! Mums are like the poinsettias of fall and rely on a set amount of light to begin blooming. In fact, chrysanthemums don’t start to set flower buds until night and can last about ten hours.
These low-maintenance plants are perfect for your front porch and add color to your Fall garden. And honestly, it's not that difficult to grow of mums!
What do I need to know about growing mums?
Fall mums thrive for about six to ten weeks, and they survive well in colder weather. As the weather starts to cool down, these flowers will start to intensify with their colors and continue to bloom until the first hard frost.
How to grow mums?
Mums can thrive in nearly any type of soil, but they do best in homemade composted soil. Make sure that your soil is well-drained, or your plants will start to rot!
Make sure that you also pinch back the leaves. To do this, you will need to remove the tips of the stem during the early growing season to encourage them to branch. You’ll need to repeat this process every two weeks during the late summer.
If you are purchasing them from local garden centers in the late summer and just starting to plant them, you can skip this step.
How should I use mums in my garden?
Mums do best in a garden when they are mass planted. You’ll want to stick one or two colors together to get the full effect when you are far away. You could also create an ombre effect or mix and match them as you please.
If you’re looking to incorporate them into your fall decor, they pair well with pumpkins and other gourds! Choose orange, yellow, or even white mums for your Fall garden for a coordinated look.
The main thing to keep in mind is their bloom time. You’ll need to coordinate your bloom time, depending on the length of the fall season. While they can withstand a light frost, they won’t last long in frigid, frosty temperatures.
How much water and sunlight are needed for growing mums?
Mums need a lot of sunlight, so wherever you plant them make sure they have the opportunity for full sun. At a minimum, mums need about six hours of sun per day. If your mums don’t get enough sunlight, they will produce smaller flowers when they bloom.
Keep in mind that you also don’t want to put them out too early in the season as mums can’t do well in intense heat. If you're having a particularly warm day, potted plants can be moved into the house or garage to stay healthy.
Make sure that you are giving your mums about an inch of water each week. You’ll know that your plants need more water if they start to turn brown or limp a bit. You want to make sure to avoid soaking your foliage, or your mum plants could become diseased.
Summing it up....
Here's what you really need to know about how to take care of mums:
- plant mums in well-draining soil; mums do not like 'wet feet'
- transplant potted mums into a larger pot when necessary
- remove dead blooms and dead leaves to promote new growth
- mums do well with a layer of mulch on the soil around the base of the plant
- watch the weather for news of the first frost and cover or bring plants inside
Looking for more info?
Find info on USDA plant hardiness zones here.
More Fall Ideas
Next time, check out one of these great ideas: