This will be my second year year growing heirloom mums. The first year I had six varieties. (Here is a popular post I did about those.) This year I added 12 more new varieties to the garden, and fell in love with mums even more.
This summer was drought-like conditions in North Carolina. We had almost no rain, so the plants were all hand watered by me or a sprinkler. The plants from Kings Mums were grown on in pots on my porch for probably a month after I received them to allow them to get a little bit bigger and to give me time to figure out where to put them.
Kings Mums is one of the main sources for heirloom mums. Some other online retailers sell them, but from my experience, Kings Mum has the widest selection and the best prices. Each mum is only around $3.75 per little plant start. A bargain considering you must trim the mums a few times before July to keep their size under control and each clipping can potentially become a new baby plant. My clipping plants did not get as big as the mother plants, but despite our weather even those grew to about 12-16 inches tall and flowered.
One thing I want to point out is that these mums aren’t just for flower farmers and florists, these mums are made to be part of your landscape. All of mine are planted out in the landscape beds. The first year mums I trimmed down at the end of the season and covered in straw and they overwintered just like any other perennial. This year they all came back and I didn’t lose any in my 7B climate. I didn’t have hay this year so my second season mums (along with the first season) are just mulched around. I didn’t get a chance to mulch one bed, so we will see how those do as right now they are under a few inches of snow.
Styles of Mums:
There are many styles of mums, but I will highlight a few of my favorites.
These are low growing mums that look great in landscape, but can also be cut to be put in arrangements. The photo above is Bronze Fleece.
This pink decorative bloom is called Curlew. It was the earliest blooming of all the mums blooming in early October.
In this arrangement (bottom left), there is another anemone/cascading mum — Pink Fleece. Below that, is the Vesuvio mum (white). It is like a cross between an anemone with some spoon style fringe. Looking forward to see this on a bigger plant next year.
This is a mum from last year that I am not entirely sure what it is. It has a beautiful metallic sheen to it.
The new additions this year to my spiders include: Mocha (left dusty mauve/purple) and Fleur De Lis (pink right). The white bloom is another of Vesuvio and the unidentified mum from above.
Another of Mocha above.
One thing mums require is a lot of staking to keep them upright due to the large flower heads and height of the plants. Ideally, using a mesh system would be best, but this is in a landscaped area, so I went without this year.
Last, is Satin Ribbon. In this picture it is not quite unfurled, but it is a similar shade of blush to Seatons J Adore in a spider form.
These mums are more the style that you are used to seeing in the flower shops. This year I add some new colors.
This is a beautiful mauve/purple called Moira. Big beautiful heads.
This is Coral Charm in the bright sunlight(above) Below Coral Charm and Moira and the orange is Apricot Courtier.
Next below is Apricot Courtier
Below I believe is Seaton’s J Dore. What I like to call the Cafe au Lait of mums.
I think this is a closed bud of Apricot Alexis. Underneath are Bronze Fleece that are slightly past their prime turning a more vintage shade from their original bronze.
Next, is one I bought a second plant of for new year, Rosedew. It has beautiful coloring.
In this photo below are (top row) Honeyglow and Apricot Courtier; (bottom row) Apricot Alexis and Bronze Fleece.
The only other white mum I got this year was Lynn Johnson. The plant didn’t get very large this year, so I am hoping next year I will get more blooms.
Vesuvio and Lynn. Notice how the spiders on Vesuvio almost look like spoons. There is a whole mum cultivar of this type of mum with spoon ends.
Lastly, here are a few Fall arrangements from this year featuring mums.
A bouquet of all my pink mums.
I hope you have enjoyed this blog post on heirloom mums. Please be sure and see last year’s post for my first year’s cultivars and links to other blog posts on mums.