Friday, October 9, 2009


When Autumn Ambles In
When Autumn ambles in
In her golden days aglow,
She wears cloaks of scarlet colors
And skies of indigo.
She wears silver-sparkled sunbeams
And cotton-candy hair.
She paints the night in frosty white,
Spreading magic everywhere.
God ushers in His miracles
And each year as they begin,
My soul with joy will overflow...
When Autumn ambles in.
-Nora M. Bozeman

Isn't it exciting to see mums popping up everywhere and the decorative bales of hay, maybe a scarecrow or two?

Here are some basics on mums:

When night temps drop, generally in mid-September, look for plants that are just starting to break bud.

Don't try to buy a lot of different colors for a given area. Stick to one color for impact.

Darker shades such as bronze and burgundy look better longer and spent blooms are less noticeable. The same is true for mums with double, as opposed to single, daisy-like blooms.

Buy the bigger plant!
They will be happiest in a sunny location. But they will bloom anyway if you buy one that's budding. However, if you keep them in the shade, you may have to compost them after blooming.

Keep flowers coming by watering and pinching. Soil should be moist, but never wet. Check daily while weather is warm, every other day when it's cooler. Remove faded blooms to encourage more buds to open. Fertilizing is not necessary.

Difference between a floral mum and a garden mum-

The blossoms of floral mums are large and showy. Grown in greenhouses and forced to bloom, they are available year-round primarily for gift giving. The blooms of garden mums are smaller and more prolific. They are cheaper than the floral mums and make up the lion's share of what's for sale.

When planted properly, both types will return year after year. Once flowering is done, cut plants back to 8 inches. Cool days and short nights may coax a few spring flowers. Pinch several times through the summer. Stop pinching on Labor Day in the Coastal and Lower South, sooner in upper regions. When buds form, flowers should follow.


  1. When you "dead-head" mums, do you just snip them off anywhere below the dead bloom?

  2. I snip down below a couple of leaves.