Fall is typically punctuated by a landscape of reds, oranges and browns–but you shouldn’t overlook that it’s also mum season! Chrysanthemums, or mums, are a fall staple, bringing a colorful accent to your landscape as the days grow shorter and the nights longer. If you want to learn more about this exceptional flower, Backyard Reflections Inc., your premier landscape design company, has got you covered. Here are some of the essentials you need to know about chrysanthemums.
What Are Chrysanthemums?
They are a flowering plant belonging to the Asteraceae family. Chrysanthemums are native to East Asia and northeastern Europe, but they were first cultivated in China as an herb in the 15th century. These flowers offer a distinctive appearance and come in nearly every color–from orange, red, and, white, to lavender and yellow. The Japanese adopted the chrysanthemum and made it a status of royalty. They even have a National Chrysanthemum Day, which is known as a festival of happiness. In the 17th century, they were adopted by the Europeans.
The Versatility of Chrysanthemums
Chrysanthemums are grouped into 13 different classifications by the National Chrysanthemum Society. Fine examples include the Class 4 Decorative mums, which are common and readily available in most flower and gardening stores during the fall season. Other standouts are the Class 6 Pom Pom, Class 8 Anemone, Class 10 Quill, and Class 11 Spider mums. The variety and color of chrysanthemums allow them to contribute greatly to the overall look of your landscape.
Growing and Caring for Chrysanthemums
If you’re planning to add these flowers to your landscape, here are some things to consider:
- Mums flower in late summer and fall, but they do need planning outdoors in spring after the risk of frost has passed.
- Make sure to plant new chrysanthemums in a well-drained bed in a spot that receives five or more hours of direct sunlight every day. You can apply up to 2 inches of compost into the soil beforehand to improve quality.
- Space the new mums 15-24 inches apart in all directions, and water them once weekly. Cover the bed with mulch.
- Pinch the growing tips of each stem back to the topmost bud when the plant is about 6 inches tall. Do this about once a month. Don’t forget to sprinkle them with fertilizer after the first pinching.
- Examine the plants for aphids and mites. If you find them, spray the pests directly with insecticidal soap. Make sure to also check and deal with fungal growth, mildew, and infested leaves.
- As dead flowers wilt, pinch them off to prevent seed formation and extend the bloom time.
Aside from outdoor living solutions, Backyard Reflections Inc. can also handle your landscape needs. If you’ve decided on adding mums to your backyard, just turn to us and our highly skilled horticulture experts will be more than happy to assist you. We proudly serve the areas in and around Nisswa and Annandale, MN. Call us today at (320) 274-6336 or fill out this contact form to schedule your consultation.