Mums – pruning for blooms

Q: Last fall I planted several mums that bloomed very well. Now in May they are loaded in buds. Do I shear the pods off or do I let them bloom now? If I let them bloom and then cut off spent blooms and fertilize them will they bloom again this fall?

A: Chrysanthemums set flower buds, and bloom thereafter, according to prevailing temperatures and daylength. It is not uncommon for them to bloom in early summer and again in fall.

Once yours have finished blooming in May, shear off the foliage to six inches tall, fertilize, water and wait for a crop of new flowers this fall.

If they do not bloom in May, to avoid floppiness, shear off the foliage to six inches tall, fertilize, water and wait for flowers in fall.

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