While some of us here at Preston’s are not ready to give up our pool days and flip-flops, we are ready to talk Chrysanthemums and the fall foliage kings! With days cooling down and nights coming sooner, your landscape is starting its seasonal change.
Here in upstate New York, we pride ourselves on our vibrant fall foliage and leaf-peeping locations, let us make your landscape one of them! Mums are such a fun explosion of color for your seasonally changing landscape, especially when they’re planted in mass plantings.
After your Daisies, Coreopsis, and most other blooms have passed, it becomes Mum season. They come in a very large variety- from colors to blossom shape to annual vs. perennial. With the dozens of kinds of Chrysanthemums to choose from, the potting arrangements are endless!
Mums are also great for window boxes and other arrangement options for you to enjoy the weeks of blooms to come. Pair your Mums with Flowering Kale, ornamental peppers, and some Purple Fountain Grass for a fun seasonal planter. Don’t forget, Mums are the perfect backdrop for your pumpkins and gourds this Fall!
There are 2 kinds of Mums that break into subcategories, they are the Florist Mum and the Hardy Mum.
Florist Mums don’t do well outside in our area- or any area that gets chilly weather. Meant to be enjoyed in our bouquets, these Mums do not have runners to protect themselves from the cold as the Hardy Mum does.
The Hardy Mum or Garden Mum is a perennial in zones 5-9 and most can tolerate a light frost at the beginning of the season. One of the most important things you can do for your new Mum is to repot it and give it a good soak afterward.
Mums tend to have very tight root balls from growing in their nursery pots in the warm greenhouses, they’ll want to stretch out a bit. Fall is a great time for planting perennials, but you do run the risk of your plant’s roots not developing enough in the new soil fast enough.
To give your Mum the best chance of surviving winter make sure you water it every other day and put it in a spot to get 6+ hours of sunshine. Mums love full sun but not the heat, which is why fall is the Chrysanthemum’s favorite season! If you’re watering your mum enough, it will prevent wilting which affects the vibrancy of your blooms.
Don’t forget to dead-head your Mums to encourage the new buds!
Time to talk about the kings of foliage that we have here in New York State!
Some of our favorites here at Preston’s start with the classic Northern Red Oak. This tree boasts dark red foliage that physically hangs on longer than the other trees in the area.
Next, we have our beloved Dogwoods, focusing especially on the Kousa and Bailey Red Twig. Dogwoods have always been known for their spring interest with all their beautiful blooms, but they also make for great fall interest too!
The foliage goes from orange to reddish-purple and the branches even don berries in the colder seasons for the birds. Some Dogwoods do have vibrant branches, the Bailey Red Twigged Dogwood or Yellow Twigged would make a beautiful contrast to the bleaker winter/fall landscapes.
If you’re looking for a pop of gold in your landscape- look no further than the Birch Tree. Most of these trees come with an added bonus- a fun textured bark that looks great in landscaping and your home!
Our favorite fall foliage king is the Japanese Maple or Acer Palm. With so many foliage texture variations and color variations, how could this not be a fan favorite? Their lacey foliage ranges from light green to gold to even burgundy/purple. Some Japanese Maples, such as the Tamukeyama, do great in pots on your patio too.
A fresh tree planting with a sprinkling of Mums is a wonderful way to embrace the changing seasons and brighten up your landscape.
Come check out our Chrysanthemum selection and fall foliage tree selection at Preston’s Home & Garden Center in Ontario NY.