Host: Gary Bachman, Ornamental Horticulture Specialist
I always enjoy the changing of the summer season to fall today on Southern Gardening.
When this season change actually occurs can be a bit confusing. Astronomically, charting the position of Earth in relation to the Sun, fall began on September 21/22, the Autumnal Equinox. Or the Weather Channel, using the Meteorological calendar, says fall started on September 1st. But another sure sign we’re in the autumn season is when the bountiful mums show up in our garden centers and nurseries. Now is the time to start planning how and where to effectively use these plants around your home and landscape. I consider the fall mums as a useful bridge crop between the summer and fall seasons. Choosing fall mums in full flower have instant impact for any autumn party and cookout. Though in my opinion a mum in full bloom is like a shooting star. Bright and glorious, but only in the briefest sense. For more prolonged landscape show, select plants that still have tight buds and just starting to show color. This increases the period of showy display as the buds begin to open in the garden. Place fall flowering mums in locations that get the fullest sun and consistently water the plants. This is especially true for mums in containers; never let them dry out.
So whatever method you use to garden by the season, now is the time to put some beautiful and colorful mums in your garden and landscape. Until next time, I’m horticulturist Gary Bachman enjoying our Southern Gardening.