Planting fall garden mums?

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I just planted outdoor garden mums (in the Chicago area) and then read that they will they will not survive the winter because they won’t develop and adequate root system. Is there anything I can do (besides moving them indoors) to help them?

  6 answers
  • Mogie Mogie on Oct 26, 2018

    First, leave the foliage on the plants until spring. Don't prune them back after frost has turned them brown. Then, either mulch the plants heavily or dig, pot and move the plants to a more protected spot in the garden for the winter. If you choose to move the plants, do so before the first hard freeze.

  • Mindshift Mindshift on Oct 26, 2018

    Do not fertilize plants; this causes new growth which will be damaged by cold. Cover the plants with a row cover during early cold spells, removing the cover during the day. This can extend the growing period for the plants. Mulch the base with leaves, and make sure the ground is not dry before a major cold spell. If you receive rain, you don't need to water more.

  • Victoria Larsen Stencils Victoria Larsen Stencils on Oct 27, 2018

    I planted fall mums in large pots in Northern Idaho. They not only lasted all winter, survived extreme and long term freeze, but came back ever more beautiful the next year.

  • Melita Todd Melita Todd on Oct 27, 2018

    Are they hardy mums or just a one season mum? Hardy mums should come back.

    • See 1 previous
    • Melita Todd Melita Todd on Oct 28, 2018

      The little tag should tell you. The one inserted in the pot. I am in Alabama and most of the mums here are just for the season (no pretty foil). When I lived in NY hardy mums were easier to find. Good luck with them...let us know how they do.

  • Ellis Ellis on Oct 28, 2018

    I think there's a pretty good chance they'll survive. I've planted some in the ground in late October, and they came back in spring, though our winters on the east coast are not as cold as yours.


    I've also planted some in planters (whiskey barrels or large plastic pots), left them over the winter not expecting them to survive, but they did. All I had to do in spring was cut them back hard and wait for them to grow again. After they start growing in spring, wait until late June or so and cut them back by about half to make them branch out and get bushy.

  • Ejjemom0612 Ejjemom0612 on Oct 30, 2018

    Water the plants well until we freezing temperatures consistently. Do not cut back until spring. I live near you and probably 50-75% of the mums I've planted have come back.