Mums in planters? PICS

kimcocoJuly 30, 2008

I just purchased my first mums - I believe they are half gallon pots.

Dummy me - I have some spectacular ferns in urn planters, and beautiful coco hanging baskets with coleus, alyssum, sweet potato vine..I was so proud b/c I did them myself this year...I decided to empty the leftover water from my miracle grow sprayer, and dumped it (along with the granules of undissolved fertilizer) into my ferns and hanging baskets.

What was I thinking????????? (sad to say this isn't the first time I've done this - thankfully, it was limited to my annuals this time around)

Needless to say, my beautiful annuals and ferns are slowly browning.

So, instead of buying new ferns and annuals at this point in the season, I decided to grab a bunch of mums that were on sale - at least they'll give me nice color into fall.

My question is, how big can I expect them to get? I'm unsure how many to plant in a hanging basket. My coco hanging baskets are 16" or 17" in diameter, with a nice depth.

Do I plant one or two per basket? I'm afraid to overcrowd them as I have no idea how full these get.

Visually speaking...I have two hanging baskets, one on each side of my garage, and then at the base of the garage I have my urn planters under each hanging basket that hold my browning ferns.

I bought a combo of two colors - a red and an orangy red mums.

I'll have mums cross to bear...but I'm undecided if I should plant one color in the planters and the other color in the hanging baskets or combine the colors in each of them.

What will look best?

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They'll likely not grow any further; what you plant, size- and form-wise, is what you'll see until frost.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2008 at 4:06PM
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caroline_2008(Z 6)

The mums do grow large in time but yours probably wont
have time to put on much growth now. Mine got this
large last fall, and they are on their way to be the same
for this fall. I have mums all around my beds as I usually
cut them back and I rooted several of the cuttings , its easy to have lots of plants.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2008 at 6:00PM
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Is anyone else wondering whether these mums will still be in bloom come fall? I've never had a old garden mum or a new one be in bloom three months. Aug, Sept Oct. I usuallly wait until mid September to buy. Then the late season ones are coloring up, and I've got them until very hard frost.

Come to think of it, you must have bought early season mums. I think if you want a continuous display you may have to purchase mid and late season later.

I'm sorry, but I don't like mums in hangers. They are too stiff, and when some of the flowers go buy and are brown and yuckky, you'll have to take them down and dead head.

So, I would plant some sort of vine with them. See how the chartreuse or burgandy sweet potato vine looks, or maybe you have some bits of creeping charley that you could stick in, maybe some small pots of green ivy. Annuals are down to a couple bucks a 6 pack in a lot of nurseries. Perhaps you could investigate a bit.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2008 at 9:01PM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

You can wash out that excess fertilizer....just keep flooding the pots and letting the water drain out. In fact you might as well unpot the ferns and replace some of the soil, cut off the brown leaves and in 1 month they will look better than the mums will. Buy another big pot and put the mums back by your patio.
Linda C

    Bookmark   July 31, 2008 at 10:16AM
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Those mums are in full dead bloom now. They'll be long past bloom very soon. That's prolly why they were on sale, and were prolly forced on top of that to bloom this early. That takes a lot of life out of any perennial. I'd suggest you stick them in the ground asap, and don't hold your breath for them to survive the winter. You can still possibly get a rebloom before frost, but the flowers may be hiding close to the foliage.

Linda is right. If you ever overdose your plants with fertiliser, immediately start flushing them out and let the water drain out the bottoms and keep them on the moist side for awhile.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2008 at 3:37PM
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mxk3(Zone 6 SE MI)

Great pics!

I've never grown mums in containers but I'm considering doing so this season, thinking about picking up a few hardy mums - a local nursery always start setting out the hardy ones about mid-August - and overwintering in pots.

Regarding the ferns, I would take Linda's suggestions and flood out the pots. Even if they look a little bedraggled for the rest of the season, they're should be just fine next year, so don't toss them.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2008 at 3:38PM
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The odds are very much against you in Michigan to overwinter mums in containers, unless you bury the container to the brim in the earth and mulch them. I have a hard time one zone up to overwinter them in a cold frame in pots.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2008 at 7:31PM
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Caroline, your mums are really pretty.

I have to tell you, I was so irritated at my "on a whim" purchase for these mums after reading everyone's posts...I had visions of really large, overflowing mums all the way through Halloween. Ha! Wishful thinking, right?

I spent half the day today running around from nursery to nursery looking for some plants for a hanging basket. Yes, there's a lot of stuff on clearance/sale, but most of it just doesn't look appealing, unfortunately, and all the good stuff is gone.

I tried the mums in my hanging baskets - you were right Ida - I didn't like them.

My neighbor puts plants in hanging baskets that stand tall but don't hang over the side, and I don't care for the look of it. Hanging baskets should have hanging plants, right?

I don't know what I was thinking.

After searching all over town, I finally did find pre-arranged flower baskets, got them on clearance..but I'm sure they're almost finished blooming as well. I just can't win! :)

I planted the mums around my Weigela - at about 10:00 this evening, after I transplanted my flower basket to my hanging baskets.

Husband opened the door periodically, "oh my goodness, who gardens at this time of night?" ...then rolls his eyes and heads back into the house. LOL I had to laugh too, but I was determined to wake up tomorrow to nice hanging baskets and ferns once again.

The mums look great, for now anyway.

I threw the ferns away and purchased new ones. I tried overdosing them with water, but they just looked worse every hour, so I gave up.

I also fried some Monarda I was growing in a pot, but I've been watering and watering and watering, and today they looked a little better. Hopefully, I'll get a bloom out of them yet, but I won't hold my breath.

I fed my tomato plants tonight too, with a dose of Miracle the dark...hopefully I won't wake up to "fried" tomatoes tomorrow (although, that actually sounds rather good right now). LOL Ok, that wasn't very funny.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 2:45AM
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Kimcoco, when your mums start to look ratty, go ahead and prune them back a few inches. I raise mums commercially and have done cut-backs even later than August one and still had a bloom late in fall. Hanging basket mums can be done decently if planted as small plants early on in the season, especially if you use the planters with holes on the sides. They get enormous and look like huge round balls suspended in mid air.

I don't think it's too late to consider certain types of annuals to grow in mid-summer because as the days shorten, and the weather gets a little cooler, and the rains start back up, most annuals get a new lease on life. My early fall gardens, those with annuals, usually look better than they did since spring.

Be careful putting high nitrogen plant food on tomatoes, it forces the foliage growth at the expense of fruit.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2008 at 1:23PM
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