Plant Profile | Chrysanthemum
Plant of the month August
An ever-popular favourite, the Chrysanthemum has a long flowering period, delivering beautiful colours from late summer and into winter.
Chrysanthemums are believed by some to symbolise joy, happiness and a long life. They grow in an abundance of varieties, shapes and colours, and therefore look stunning in floral displays of cut flowers or nestled nicely in the garden in pots and borders.
These hardy Chrysanthemums are dome forming, giving long-lasting bursts of rich autumnal colours. They are a simple way to add colour to the garden late in the season.
A selection of Garden Mums
Type: Typically grown as annuals in autumn for guaranteed instant colour. Can be grown as perennial by overwintering
Flowering time: Flowers in summer and autumn
Sun Requirements: Thoroughly enjoys a sunny spot
Soil: Best results come from all-purpose compost. Draining is very important for Chrysanthemums
Hardiness: Hardy to -5 degrees, can survive in mild conditions
Eventual size: Will grow to 15” tall
When the plant reaches between six and eight inches, pinch it out and remove the top growth. This will encourage side shoots and more flowers. Then cut back after flowering to encourage business and increased blooms.
Chrysanthemum plants are relatively hardy and can withstand temperatures as low as -5 degrees but can still benefit from some protection over winter. A light covering of organic matter, compost or bark chips will make a strong, protective mulch.
Chrysanthemums can grow up to 15” tall so will need some support. Staking is often required, particularly when the more autumnal weather rolls in. Add some extra protection by ensuring your plants are in a sheltered area.
Complementary Planting Ideas
A simple way to plant Chrysanthemums is to utilise their variation and versatility. Plant different coloured varieties close to each other for a real spectrum of colour.
Chrysanthemums grow well in containers and deliver excellent showstopping impact.
They grow well with classic bedding plants, like pansies and violas. These are a great way to surround Chrysanthemums with even more colour!
Many perennials make a good partner for Chrysanthemums, and foliage plants add a balanced contrast with ‘showier’ varieties.
Why is this a fantastic garden plant?
Chrysanthemums are a fantastic way to brighten up the garden with an instant show of colour when the summer sunshine seems to be becoming a distant memory, and autumn is drawing in.
Chrysanthemum Top Tip
They can be quite susceptible to mildew so be sure to keep the soil dry and well drained. It is important to ensure good air circulation too.
- The name Chrysanthemum comes from “chrysos” and “anthos” in Greek, meaning gold flower.
- Chrysanthemums are used in Chinese cooking where the leaves and stem are boiled and eaten.