Growing Plants

Can You Plant Mums In The Ground After They Die? 7 Useful Tips

Can you plant mums in the ground after they die?

Mums or Chrysanthemums usually thrive in the late summer in fall, providing much-need color to the garden, while the other three colors start to fade away due to the cold winter.

The plant comes in various colors, shapes, and sizes. You can find them in white, green, orange, yellow, pink, purple, red, bronze, and burgundy.

They are also available in different shapes, such as cushions, buttons, daisies, decoratives, and pompons.

However, they are generally not expected to survive in the winter. So, can mums come back to life? Below is the answer you need.

Can You Plant Mums In The Ground After They Die?

can you plant mums in the ground after they die

Yes, it’s possible to do so as long as your plants meet the requirements before planting. They should be hardy mums that can survive and be grown as perennials.

You should plant them in a full sun location, add the proper amount of fertilizer, and do pruning in time for the best growth.

What Mums To Choose?

Do mum flowers come back? You have a chance to see the beautiful flowers again if you know how to choose the best plant first.

The best choice for youth is the hardy potted mums, as they are considered strong enough to grow as perennial plants.

In the market, you should look for the potted ones labeled “garden mums,” not “florist mums.”

Some of the varieties below are considered annuals, but they can still survive in the winter if you cut back to around 6 inches from the ground and plant them with a thick layer of mulch before winter.

  • Chrysanthemum’ Jessica’: this perennial plant’s hardiness zone is from 5 to 9. Their flowers are heavily ruffled with bright yellow.
  • Chrysanthemum’ Saxapahaw’: the plant grows in USDA zones 5 through 9. They have beautiful rose flowers with yellow color in the center.

Where To Plant?

Choosing the proper planting area is a part of my guidance on how to get mums to come back. Remember that the plant does not prefer to be wet underneath.

Therefore, you should choose a place with moist and well-drained soil. It means heavy-soil areas and low spots are highly not recommended.

I once planted them in too dry soil, and they all turned wilted in no time.

Plus, you should choose a location under full sun for at least 6 hours. Besides, the area should be protected.

Planting the mums in the open space will cause extreme damage rather than growing them in safe locations, such as nearby your house.

General Caring

What to do with mums after fall? Here are some notes on caring for the plant through different seasons.

When you see the flower has gone dormant in the fall, don’t cut them. The uncut old growth can be an additional protection layer to protect your plant through the winter.

Once spring comes, you can cut the old growth. When the new growth is around 6 inches long, remove the growing tips to help brush your mums to bloom more flowers.

The pinching process should be done two to three times per year in late June or early July. Don’t forget to provide enough water for your mums throughout the growing season when the weather is dry.

Do fall mums come back? Dividing mums every few years, when you see the new growth start to appear in spring, will benefit the growing process. 

You need to dig up the whole clump, eliminate the old center portion, cut up the remaining sections, and leave several good shoots with a healthy root system.

When To Plant Mums

Most people plant the mums in the fall, but it is a mistake. The plant can’t overwinter as we thought the best time of. The best time of the year to grow this plant is spring.

Planting mums in the ground in spring gives them more time to establish deep roots in the soil. So, the sooner you have started, the better they will grow.

Tips To Plant Mums In The Ground After They Die

mums in ground

Consider The Type Of Mums

Can you plant potted mums in the ground? It is possible if you choose healthy plants. They should have no sign of browning or wilt and are not yet blooming.

And the most important thing is that they should be winter hardy. The ideal hardiness zones are from 5 through 9.

Go for the hardy garden mums but not the florist varieties because they are not cold-hardy and are not for transplanting.

Besides considering the proper type, you should choose when to start planting them to allow the roots to grow before winter.

If you plant in the fall, you should have at least six to eight weeks before the first frosts come. If you start later, it may work, but the chance is not high.

Don’t Plant In Too Much Shade

Can you plant mums after they die? Yes, but you should provide it with full or partial direct sunlight – the best for the plant to grow and bloom.

In hot climates, the mums may need a little shade during the hot hours of the day, but it does not mean you need to plant them in the shade.

Like the Begonias’ sunlight requirement, you should choose a place where the mums can receive full sun for at least 6 hours per day.

You also need well-draining soil because the plant can’t tolerate dry and soggy soil.

If you want to plant several, you should leave a space of around 18 inches between plants since some varieties can grow big and wide.

Don’t Over-fertilize

I recommend using a nitrogen fertilizer when you see the branches and leaves start to grow in spring. Meanwhile, phosphorus fertilizer is good for fall mums as it helps develop the root system.

Once the flower buds are formed, don’t apply any fertilizer.

After the winter comes and the ground gets freezing, you can place several inches of mulch, such as straw, bark, ground-up leaves, compost, or even coconut mulch, around the plant to protect them.

While sometimes snow is considered a great insulator, the plant’s fairly shallow root system is easy to heave and dry out in the winter.

Applying mulch protects the plant against wide swings in soil temperature and retains the necessary moisture.

Don’t Forget To Water It

Watering is needed during the growing season until the frosts begin. Forgetting to water the mums is a big mistake.

In fall, days are cooler, the sun is not as strong as in summer, and all plants can’t dry out quickly.

However, water is still necessary for the mums to grow until the ground freezes.

In the summer, you might need to water them every day, yet when the weather cools down, you only should water the top inch of soil where you feel it dry.

The plants can’t tolerate dry soil. They will die out if there is not enough water. If you think it is hard to check the dryness of the soil, use a basic moisture meter.

Deadhead In The Correct Time

According to what I know, some gardeners tend to cut garden moms back too early. However, the best time to deadhead them is in the fall.

When you do so, you should leave the rest of the flower alone as long as you can.

The function of the leaves in fall is to transform the sunlight into energy to help form the roots. You’d better wait until the next spring comes and conduct the additional pruning process.

Or you can wait until the stems die to cut them down to around an inch above the ground and wait for the new growth to appear.

Don’t Pinch Mums Too Late

It may sound crucial, but you should pinch the buds or flowers before planting.

Some gardeners do not know about this trick and pinch late or don’t pinch the growing tips at all, resulting in the blooming of the flowers. However, the plant will have a long stem and fewer flowers.

Snipping off helps the plant focus on its root development, benefiting you in the long run to have healthy branch growth and fuller plants.

The latest time to stop pinching is mid-July (better in early July), so the buds can form and bloom flowers.

Improve The Drainage

Too soggy or poorly draining soil negatively affects the thriving process, especially in cold areas.

One of the methods to improve drainage in your beautiful garden is to mix compact soil or heavy clay with high-quality compost or garden soil. It may loosen the ground and benefit your flowers.

The Bottom Lines

do fall mums come back

Can you plant mums in the ground after they die? Though the plant is prone to die out in winter, you can still revive the “garden mums,” and in most cases, you can be successful.

Following my tips above will help your landscape be beautified with the Chrysanthemums’ blooming flowers again. See you in the next post

Samuel Mark

Hello I am Samuel. Samuel's Garden is a garden blog where I share my experiences in garden caring and tree growth. Hope you enjoy it!

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