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How to Grow Chrysanthemum
Chrysanthemum is a big word for a big flower. Most people shorten the name, and just call them "Mums". Whatever you call them, they are one of the most popular flowers in America. These easy to grow perennials, are among the hardiest of flowers. Florists force them to bloom in the spring, for Easter and Mother's Day gifts. Gardeners enjoy their blooms at the end of the season before, and sometimes after, the snow begins to fly. A little frost and snow won't deter these big, colorful blooms from shining in your flowerbed.
Chrysanthemum are members of the daisy family. There are hundreds of varieties, including dwarf varieties. There are a broad range of bright, cheerful colors to choose from.
Chrysanthemums look great anywhere you put them. They are superb in your flower garden. They make great indoor flowering plants. And, they're splendid in containers on your patio or deck.
Chrysanthemums can be started from seed. Cuttings are one of the most common ways of propagating mums.
Mums can also be propagated by plant division. Just dig up and separate established plants into smaller clumps. Then, replant them in your flower beds.
How to Grow Chrysanthemum Plants:
Hardy mums are easy to grow. They prefer full sun and a rich, well draining soil. When planting or transplanting mums, mix in plenty of compost. You can also mix in fertilizer into the flowerbed, prior to planting.
Chrysanthemums are shallow rooted. So, keep them well watered near the surface.
Apply a multi-purpose fertilizer once a month.
Pinch back the growth to promote a bushy appearance. In late summer, allow the growth to develop. Switch to a fertilizer higher in Phosphorous to promote blooming, and you will be rewarded with big and colorful blooms. These blooms will shine in your garden long after your other plants have succumbed to frost.
Chrysanthemums make excellent cuttings for indoor vases. Just check for bugs that like to harbor in the leaves.
Mums will survive winter in most zones. If you are in a more northerly climate, apply a thick layer of mulch over the plant after the leaves have died off.
Divide clumps every few years to avoid overcrowding. Got a few extras? Give them to family and gardening friends!
Insect and Disease:
Insects like to nest in the leaves in the fall, especially aphids. Spray or dust lightly with insecticide or insecticidal soap as needed.
Apply fungicides only as needed.
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