Is it ever possible to plant these seasonal plants and regrow them? I have tried without success. Aren't they perrenials? Can anyone suggest a procedure for doing this?
The mums sold in stores aren't all the same and it is difficult to know what is what. Most are perennials and are fairly hardy, but some are warm climate (like zone 10) plants that won't overwinter. I don't know how to tell the difference though as most pots are simply labelled 'mums'.
Most, however, are cold hardy perennials to zone 5, maybe even colder. Growing them in the garden is a fair amount of work though. First, they are shallow rooted so a heavy mulch is beneficial to retain moisture. Without this they may just croak or suffer damage in winter. Also, the appearance of the store bought mums isn't obtained without frequent pruning. The tips *must* be pinched back several times throughout the growing season to retain a unifrom, bushy shape. Without this frequent (4-6 times) pinching back they look terrible and don't do well as they kind of seperate from their own weight and they will not be covered in blooms.
If you are willing to plant them, mulch heavily to retain soil moisture for the entire year and pinch them back at least once per month then you should be able to have great looking mums next year from what you got this year.
Whether this is worth the effort is something only you can decide.
A few years ago, I bought some Mums marked down in Lowe's. Here is a picture of five of them - three deep purples, one pink, one red - (they are sort of in the middle of this border). I clip them up until July 4th and then just let them grow. I love them because they bloom with the Autumn Joys, Montauk Daisies and make Fall even more colorful. Good luck with yours - the above information should help you - I would definitely try them. Carrie
I live in Manitoba Canada and it's really cold here in Winter. would these mums survive or could I dig them up and take in doors to set out next Spring? Donna
I use to have a hardware store in a downtown area. I NEVER sold mums as "hardy" mums. I sold them as Garden Mums, and never had a complaint. The best thing you could do is to go to a good local supplier in the Fall, and write down the names of what you like. Go back in the Spring and see if the supplier will sell you cuttings that they buy, or very recently potted cuttings. Then YOU will have to do the pinching, fertilizing, watering, etc. but your chances of carrying over the mums is greatly increased. You could also buy the plants in the Fall and put them in a cold frame or similar structure for the winter, and hope that they will winter over. If this sould like too much bother buy them in the Fall, let them die naturally, and go thru the same process each and every Fall. Good Luck.
Or find someone that has a mum you like, go by in the spring to see if it has survived and ask for a cutting. After all they will be pinching them back, you might as well root the cuttings, and you know they are hardy in your zone.