Darrell Blackwelder: Planting fall mums

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 17, 2022

Planting chrysanthemums in the fall is an annual event adding a splash of color to our landscapes. Chrysanthemums, also known as “garden mums or hardy mums,” are now being sold by local garden shops and other retail outlets throughout Rowan County.

Chrysanthemums are often used as accent, plants providing color between shrubs or as a border. These plants can be massed in beds or used as simple pot plants as focal points on terraces or decks. However, these plants are must often untitled as potted plants as specimen or accent plants on decks or entryways.

The preferred blossom color of Rowan County residents is yellow, but other colors and combinations that are now available. Over 30 different varieties are grown by local growers in Rowan County.

Chrysanthemums are usually purchased as annuals; once the blooms are spent, the plants are tossed making way for another flowering plant. Some choose to keep the plant for next year. Those that plant them must realize that the plants will not be as compact and tightly budded as those produced by commercial producers. Intense labor and careful fertilization are very much a part of chrysanthemum production.

Darrell Blackwelder is the retired horticulture agent and director with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service in Rowan County. Contact him at deblackw@ncsu.edu.