Ok, here I am talking about mums again!  But I have had two questions that everyone seems to be asking….How can I get my mums to come back every year?  And.. How long will the mums last in pots?

Here is the answer for the first question:  Mums are considered semi-hardy for our area. So what that means is that it is very common for someone to have a mum come back several years in a row and then die out unexpectedly the next.  A lot of it depends on the winter and how much snow we get, which is pretty much out of our control.  While there are certain things you can do to help your mum beat the odds of our crazy winters.  If you plan to plant one in ground, do it soon and place in a semi-protected area. The  root system will be stronger and larger the longer it is in the ground before the snow flies.  Also, do not cut the foliage down over the winter. Cut it down late winter, early spring. The standing foliage allows snow to be trapped and protects the crown and roots from fluctuating temperatures.  Lastly water well and do not allow it to completely dry out. Not only will it damage new roots but shorten your bloom time.
Now for the second question.  How long your mums bloom in your pots entirely depends on you. If they are re-potted into a larger container, kept evenly moist and placed in a cooler location, they will last any where from four to six weeks. These containers were planted mid-August. I have no doubts that they will last another two to three weeks! Now if the pot dries out completely a few times it will shorten your bloom time dramatically.
I hope this clears up some confusion and doubt for everyone and inspires you to spruce up those containers and landscapes with some fantastic fall color!
Mum’s the Word