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I wish to set up a new bed just for Inward Growing Large Chrysanthemums and would like to leave them in the ground over the winter. Unfortunately, last winter I lost my Chrysanthemums by leaving them in even though they had a good covering of mulch we do have a high water table in the garden. I am getting on in years and digging them up each year is a bit too much for me now. Any suggestions?
Hi Marilyn. Just putting in a note of interest here as I would like to know the same thing. I would like chrysanthemums for autumn interest in our garden but I was going to maybe put them in pots so that I could put them in our garage if it gets frosty. Presumably begonia tubers and dahlias could be treated in the same way? Hope you don't mind me joining in with your question - I don't like the idea of digging things up each year either
Hiya Marilyn, is it a raised bed you have, as this could have a huge effect on your chrysanths?
You could try growing in pots as Charley suggests and then burying the pots in the bed. When the bad weather comes it would then be relatively easy to lift the pots and store them somewhere more sheltered. In my experience the wet does more damage than the cold to hardy perennials so your high water table is probably what killed them last year.
Many thanks for your response. I will try putting in pots but what size would you suggest to ensure they flower well and do not become pot bound?
I would probably use 8 inch (20cm) pots and choose ones with large holes in the bottom as you want the roots to grow through those into the soil of the bed (so don't use crocks at the bottom of the pots.) They would need re-potting each spring with fresh compost before they are put out into the bed otherwise they would become pot-bound in the second year as well as running short on nutrients. I'd also mix-in some fish, blood and bone to the compost when you do the re-potting - they are greedy plants and need a lot of food to do their best. The RHS have some cultivation advice here:
Thanks for the good advice. I will follow your advice and hopefully have some gorgious picking chrysanthemums to brighten up my life this Autumn.
Good luck Marilyn - I'd love to see some photo's if it all works out.