Mums the word!

No doubt about it! Mums are the divas of the autumn garden. Mums can quickly and easily add beautiful fall colors to your home. Because of their tight, mounding habit and stunning bloom colors, garden mums are perfect for mass plantings. To get the maximum effect, stick to only one or two colors. You might also choose to arrange a gradual transition of related colors. It is best to look around your yard to see what colors would best complement the existing landscape and decor. 

And, of course, many people want to know if their mums will come back again next year. The answer to this question is not as easy to answer as you might think.

In the past, all mums were hardy / perennial type. Over the past years, this is no longer true. The varieties available are no longer tested for their hardiness. Most people will use the mums as a decoration and never really plant it in the ground. Therefore, the varieties that are most commonly grown are chosen more for their timing, ease of growing and habit. Still, they should overwinter in Michigan if they are planted in the ground when they are not in full flower so they have time to get established as well as mulched prior to the snow cover.

Fall Planting Guide for Mums

Planting in Beds

  1. Choose mums that are still tightly budded.
  2. Gently tease the roots apart as you set out mums in their planting hole.
  3. Mums grow best in rich well drained soil. They prefer a position in the garden with at least a half day of sun. They also require plenty of air circulation around each plant.
  4. No fertilizer is required during the fall season.
  5. Water newly planted mums immediately after transplanting. During dry spells water as needed to keep plants from wilting.

Planting in Containers

  1. Lightly tease the roots apart as you would any transplant. Plant your mums using a quality potting mix. Do not use top soil from your yard or garden as it is too heavy.
  2. Fall planted mums do not require fertilizer.
  3. Water your container as soon as you finish planting it. Water before signs of wilting appear. Do not allow your mums to dry out.
  4. Containers should receive at least a half day of sun.
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