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Spring Companion for a Mum?

Posted by sharons2 z3-4 ID (My Page) on
Tue, May 18, 04 at 15:02

I posted this question in the Far North forum, but I think this is more of a companion question...

I have a Debonaire Mum in plain sight in my front bed. It looks as dead as can be - except for a few green leaves near the bottom - and there's a nice big hole surrounding it to give it space to grow. Since it's a fall bloomer, it seems to be pretty late breaking dormancy.
What could I surround it with to hide it and give it some color in the Spring? I was thinking of interplanting (or underplanting?) it with a Spring bloomer (or a spring ephemeral?) that would fade away about the time that the Mum comes into it's own.

I not so sure that Tulips would work, since once the foliage starts to decay, THEY will be in plain sight, and the Mum will only be about 4 inches tall. Any ideas?

Also, is this the time to divide the Mum, too? It's beginning it's third year in my garden.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Spring Companion for a Mum?

Even if you use bulbs, there is still the aging foliage situation. How about an annual like Cosmos? Or Nigella if you like blue there. Both reseed.

To propagate new mums you take 'cuttings'. When the growth is about 6-8 inches tall, break off the top 3 inches and strip off the lower leaves. Poke it in the ground and water well. I have to do this in semi-shade in our climate and I cover the cutting with a jar after watering; then leave it alone for a month.

RE: Spring Companion for a Mum?

Most spring ephemerals are shade lovers which is why they would not work or bloom with mums...... your mums are in the sun right????? Dodecatheon meadia is a spring ephemeral that flowers in sun...... :)

RE: Spring Companion for a Mum?

I mix daffodils with daylilies behind my mums. Three seasons of bloom and each helps hide the declining foliage of the previous bloomer.

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