The Fall Flower
Without a doubt, the flower most identified with fall is the chrysanthemum. There's good reason for mums' popularity in autumn, because they liven up the garden after most plants have finished blooming. Mums flower prolifically in a huge range of colors - including white, pink, lavender, yellow, orange, rust, and purple - and look great in beds, borders, and containers.
Buy Hardy Mums
After Labor Day, you'll find mums for sale almost everywhere. If you're planting mums this fall and want them to come back next year, be sure you buy "hardy mums" (also called "garden mums"). That's more than just a name: these are perennials hardy enough to over-winter successfully in USDA Zones 4-9 when planted properly. "Florist mums," typically sold in floral shops and supermarkets, are not as hardy and are not likely to survive a cold winter outdoors.
How to Plant Your Mums
Mums are easy to care for, but should be planted in well-drained soil with plenty of organic matter. Miracle-Gro® Garden Soil for Flowers & Vegetables, mixed with your existing soil, is ideal for garden beds. Try to get your mums in the ground early (6 weeks before a killing frost) to give them the best chance to root well and survive the winter.
Decorate Outdoors with Mums in Containers
A display of colorful mums in containers is a great way to decorate your patio, deck, or front steps for fall. To plant mums in containers, use a quality potting medium such as Miracle-Gro® Potting Mix.