Like pumpkins and football, we just have to have them when it gets to be sweater weather. After all, fall just wouldn't be fall without them. Take my quiz to find out what kind of mum lover you are.
The TraditionalistYou've used these classic fall bloomers in your autumn landscape for years. You know how to maximize their colorful impact with a minimum amount of work. No digging for you;you know how to nestle them into your still-blooming flower beds, plastic pot and all. They'll look great next to your bronze coleus and strappy grasses. You wisely keep them watered during dry and windy spells, and deadhead their spent flowers (or replace the whole pot..any un-named variety will do... you know they're inexpensive this time of year) if they look less than fresh. Well done, you, for an easy seasonal update!
You'll start with your existing garden greenery and tuck in these softer colored mums along with some pots of frilly, leafy kale. For good measure, you nestle in some bone-colored gourds and pumpkins. The effect: romantic, elegant, sophisticated. Just what you were shooting for.
You want mums with a contemporary, modern vibe. No ruffly daisy mums will work. You like your mums in cushion or button varieties only. Maybe some 'Yoko Ono' cushion mums? Pure petals tightly packed from the center to the edge; that's your style. Maybe in chartreuse and umber, but definitely no more than two colors. Three staggered galvanized pots or buckets of them on your front steps will make just the right statement. You know to handle their rigid flower stems carefully when planting, and as long as the pots have drainage, no need to worry about the quality of soil or feeding. This is strictly 'wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am' style gardening. When they're done, you'll simply toss them in the compost heap.
The Host or HostessNo donning sunscreen for you. You'll take your mums inside, thank you very much. They will be a beautiful component of the fall centerpiece on your dining room table. You can pick some up at the grocery store along with your menu items.
You'll arrange some in a flow blue cache pot along with some fall fruit and cheese creating just the soiree look you want for your dinner party. Some candles, some nuts, some guests. Voila! You, and your mums, never looked better.
The Set Designer
You like your mums as supporting cast members to a complete fall display. Scarecrows, hay bales, corn stalks, pumpkins, gourds...and huge pots of mums, of course.The scarecrow will get the most attention, but wouldn't be nearly so impressive without your large and gorgeous pots of mums at his (her?) feet. In heavy bloom you can see them glowing from a block away. You'll take your mums extra-large please and plop them down wherever you want huge shots of fall color. 'Mammoth Mum Red Daisy' would look spectacular.
The True Gardener
Dug the big whole, added compost, kept them watered and fed. You even remembered to keep them sheered until the Fourth of July to postpone bloom until autumn. You planted them at the front of the flower border with the purple coleus and gold crotons. Now, they look lovely from your living room window...well worth the extra effort.Your friends and neighbors may go for immediate mum-gratification, but not you. You actually planted the ones you purchased last fall.
The Homecoming Queen
They may have originated in China and Japan, but they've been thoroughly Americanized now.You are all about that big ol' pompom or spider mum variety. Like the one in your homecoming queen corsage. Spider mums if you recall correctly.
You know them as 'football mums'. A casual bouquet of them, with their thick, sturdy stems, will be perfect for the game tail-gate this weekend. Game on!