How Cheryl’s mom grows hot

How Cheryl’s mom grows hot

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Ken Lin of Waters Garden Center in Prescott, Arizona, participated in Plant of the Week last Friday. Here’s your breakdown on how to grow Spicy Cheryl Mum.

How to Grow, Ken Lane, Plant of the Week, The Mountain Gardener, Watters Garden Center, Spicy Cheryl Mum

Mums are everywhere in the fall like pumpkins during the fall harvest. You can find them everywhere and anywhere from supermarkets and gas stations to the garden center. You need to know that it is very easy to kill mums, especially plants growing under a greenhouse, so avoid it. They dry in a split second and need to be watered at least daily. After any repeated watering, they simply die. Take a look at five tips to keep your mum from wilting.

Reboot upon purchase

The most important tip for keeping mothers happy is to repot as soon as possible. Most mothers are attached to the root when purchasing. The roots occupy the entire pot and are difficult to water.

Adding Fresh Watters soil to any pot is a game changer in the garden. Choose a container that is slightly larger than the pot your mother came with. Fill the bottom of the new pot with Water’s potting soil.

Carefully remove your mother from her nursery pot. Scrub the roots surrounding the root ball, especially the lower roots. Place the plant in the new pot and make sure the surface of the soil is at least an inch below the edge of the new pot. This one-inch lip allows you to water your newly planted mum properly.

Fill the space around the plant’s root ball with additional potting soil. Gently compact the soil. Water the pot well until it drains from the bottom of the pot. You may need to add more soil after this initial watering.

Give mothers plenty of sun

Mums are sun-loving, so make sure your pot is exposed to more than 4 hours of sun per day. Mums tolerate a shady front porch while enjoying the blooms, but always plant these cheerful perennials in sun for better blooms next year.

Water, but not too much

Mothers do not like to dry out. When its leaves droop, it is very dry. Try watering it before it wilts.

If you haven’t replanted your mum, there are two ways to tell if it’s dry. Try sticking your finger into the soil up to the second knuckle to feel the moisture. This is often difficult because the plant is very stocky or root bound.

Try lifting the bowl to feel the weight. Give it a deep soak if your mom is feeling light. Water until the water runs out of the bottom of your container.

Your mother’s dead head

Dead mothers are worth it. Plants benefit greatly from pinching off old flowers from the plant. This simple task cleans up the plant and forces it to repeat blooms.

Choose a hardy plant

Choosing the right plant is the key to its prosperity. A plant that dries out frequently will be stressed and unhealthy. If you buy a mother from a supermarket or department store, be especially careful because it is under water. Look for plants with dark green, healthy, not drooping leaves. Look for plants that have a lot of buds and not a lot of flowers that show off the color of the flower.

Only mums purchased from the garden center will return next year as perennials. Convenience stores and supermarkets treat mums as an annual flower. These mums are grown in a greenhouse and are very tender. They are meant to be used for a couple of months and composted after the first frost.

If you want perennial garden mums, buy them from a reputable nursery, or better yet, visit the Watters Garden Center.

This article was written by Ken Lin. He can be found throughout the week at Watters Garden Center, 1815 W. Iron Springs Rd in Prescott, or contact him through his website at or

Get more gardening tips from Watters Garden Center in the Mountain Gardener column on Signals A

Waters Garden Center, Open House, The Mountain Gardener, Ken Lane, Lisa Watters Lane,

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