Mums: Garden versus Fall

Now is the time of year when beautiful mums appear at Trees Today Nursery, grocery stores, and home stores.  These are called “fall” or annual mums.  Their colors are an assortment of reds, oranges, bronzes, yellows, whites, and many more.  They look beautiful sitting in pots on front porches or placed in gardens.  However, they generally do not survive being replanted in the garden in  Zone 4 (our area of Wisconsin and Minnesota).  If they do survive a winter, chances are they will not survive the following winter.  If you succeed in overwintering a fall mum in your garden, to get a bushy blooming mum in fall you need to start pinching it back in July or chances are it will become stringy and lanky.

Garden mums are the perennial mums hardy to Zone 3.  At Trees Today we carry Mammoth Mums that were bred at the University of Minnesota for endurance and cold.  Once planted in your garden they may grow to 3-3 1/2  feet wide by 3-4 feet tall.  Their colors are limited, but their abundant blooms are very showy and last for weeks.  Also, these mammoth mums do not need any pinching.

Orange fall mum
Photo from Trees Today Nursery

 

Mammoth lavender mum
Photo by Trees Today Nursery

 

 

Rainy Day Blooms

 

Finally, some well needed rain is reaching us here in the coulee region! It may be a dreary day, but fear not, your landscape doesn’t need to leave you will the same feeling. We have numerous shrubs and perennials in full bloom that will brighten up your landscape on days like today. Stop in and brighten your landscape today!

  • Peach Drift Rose

 

Deadheading Flowers, Do or Don’t

What is deadheading? As flowers start fading, pinch or cut off the flower stem below the spent flower and just above the first set of full, healthy leaves. Should flowers be deadheaded? That depends on the flower. Generally most annuals and perennials will benefit from deadheading. If a flower blooms continuously, like zinnias, cosmos, and coneflowers, it will help the flower set more blooms. Flowers that bloom only once, such as foxgloves and hollyhocks should not be deadheaded as the spent flowers need to produce seed for next year’s bloom. Please note that it is NOT necessary to deadhead. Many gardeners find it relaxing and fullfilling to deadhead; to other gardeners it is a monotonous chore. If you are unsure if you should deadhead, check the flower out on the internet or call our nursery.