Fall Mums 101: Frequent Questions Asked About Fall Mums

Fall Mums 101: Frequent Questions Asked About Fall Mums

September 1, 2022  |  Fall Flowers, Garden, Mums
Fall Mums laying outside

Mums are one of the most popular fall flowers for gardens everywhere.  


As soon as the air starts to chill, and summer draws to a close, vibrant red, yellow, orange and violet mums begin appearing everywhere.  


Chrysanthemums, often called mums, are a traditional symbol of autumn. They represent rich harvests, hearty suppers, and time spent with family and friends.  


Not only that, but reliable mums add a splash of color and vibrance to any house. 


Many people buy mums but have many questions on how to properly care for them. 


Keep reading to get answers to the most frequently asked questions about mums.  


What are Fall Mums? 


Chrysanthemums (you probably know them better as mums) are members of the Compositae family of plants. They come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors (most commonly red, yellow, orange and violet).  


Mums were originally cultivated in China over six hundred years ago and have since spread all over the world. When the Chinese first grew mums, they were used as an herb associated with the power of life and vitality.  


Mums have a multitude of ray florets that form a puffy pillow and sit atop the dark green stems and leaves. In the center of the flower (often hidden) lies a small button-shaped disc floret.  


Should I grow My Mums in a Pot or on the Ground? 


Mums are perfect for growing in a pot.  They will not winter over in a pot.  Planting in the ground in early fall will give them the best chance of returning next year.  Given an early start to developing a root system in the ground, using a root stimulator like Bonide Root N Gro, and amending the soil will all go a long way toward seeing them reappear next year.  In the spring and summer, trim and shape them as you wish so they don’t get too large, stopping in July to allow buds to set for your fall blooms. 


On the other hand, many people choose to use them as a one-season plant and replace them each year. 


Most mums grow 2-3 feet in height, so be sure to get at least a 12-inch pot. Potting soil and drainage holes are essential as well.  


How Long do Mums Take to Grow? 


The growth rate depends on several different variables.  


Different strains of chrysanthemums feature different growth rates and different mature sizes. Plants grown from seeds may take several years to reach their full potential. Meanwhile, mums bought from garden centers will have a head start on their growth, and you can even buy mums fully grown.  


How Long Will my Mums Last After They Bloom? 


There are three different types of blooming mums, early bloomers, early-fall bloomers, and late-fall bloomers.  


Early bloomers begin to bloom in August. Early-fall bloomers bloom in September. And late-fall bloomers tend to bloom in October.  


Be sure to check which variety you are getting before you make your purchase if you want your mums to be in bloom at a certain time.  


Most mums will stay in bloom between four and six weeks.  


How Do I Deal with Pests? 


Deer and rabbits are unlikely to give your mums much trouble, but insects can often become a problem.  


Aphids, Caterpillars, Leafminers, Mites, Thrips, and more can all present a problem. 


Pay close attention to your leaves. If you notice signs of an infestation, there are several different insecticides you can choose from depending on the species of insect. If you do not want to use deadly insecticides, there are several different homemade remedies you can use to deter insects.  Stop into Knollwood's and we’ll show you your options. 


When do I Water and How Often? 


Water at the base of each mum early in the morning and maintain moisture evenly throughout the soil. Make sure you water your mums several times a week if they are not getting adequate rainfall. 


Also, be sure that your pots (if you are using pots) have drainage holes to prevent root rot.  


If your mums are showing signs of wilting, then a second watering may be necessary later in the day.  


Get Your Mums from Knollwood Garden Center 


If you want your mums to be healthy when they are fully grown, then you must ensure that you buy them from a garden center that raises them right.  


If you are looking for mums to add to your garden, check out the wonderful selection offered at Knollwood Garden Center.  


We take every step to ensure that our mums are grown the right way, so they are healthy and beautiful when it comes time for you to take them home.  


Stop by Knollwood Garden Center for all your plant shopping for this fall and beyond!