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Problem with chrysanthemums

billy5billy5 Posts: 24
Some years ago I bought 4 chrysanthemum plants from ALDI. They where a bargain at £3 each including the pot. They flowered profusely. Each year I have re-potted the plants in bigger pots and they are now about a metre high and have a spread of about a metre. The plants have hundreds of flowers and appear healthy enough and grow bigger each season.

The problem is the stems of the plant are not strong enough to support the mass of flowers and consequently the plant wilts flopping around all over the place and is especially prone to wind damage. I have tried tying them up but it just doesn't work. (They look unnatural and unsightly) Neither do I have space to put them in the borders. I have never attempted to prune these plants because they have masses of flowers year on year.

Should I prune, and how do I do that, after flowering? This seems illogical because the plants are healthy and growing well. Is there any way of strengthening the stems? 

Posts

  • didywdidyw Posts: 3,524
    I had the same problem with my chrysanth in the border last year.  Here it is looking lovely:

    Then along came the wind:

    I was going to give it the Chelsea chop earlier in the year but we were so behind it wasn't putting on as much growth as it had previously so I left it.  But I did put in a much higher support and it is just coming into flower now and looking good despite the high winds we had last night.

    My advice to you would be to plant yours into a much larger pot if you can't get it in the ground and get it staked.  I use rusted stakes that have a curved bit between them.  If mine was in a pot I'd have one on the sunny side of the plant.  If you prune now you will cut off all the flowers.  Come the spring you might want to divide it and cut it back then.
    Gardening in East Suffolk on dry sandy soil.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,834
    In my experience chrysanths like that were always grown in rows on allotments, (usually by the man of the household) and  supported with canes and ties, and used as cut flowers.  It was a common sight in the village where I lived until recently, to see a chap on his bicycle cycling down Bickers Hill from the allotments on a Friday evening or Saturday lunchtime with a basket on the front and bags on his handlebars stuffed full of potatoes and veg for the weekend and a bunch of gladioli earlier in the season and then a bunch of chrysanths a bit later on. The lady of the house would make up some smaller bunches to put on a grave, or to add to the church flowers, or put a vaseful in the window for Sunday. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.





  • didywdidyw Posts: 3,524
    When I was a teenager I got a holiday job on a local chrysanthemum nursery.  They were grown in rows as you say @Dovefromabove and our job was to go along the rows taking out the lower buds, so one large bloom would flower at the top.  Presumably for the cut flower trade.  My fingers and thumb were green from the disbudding and I could never get them clean.  But smelling chrysanths now takes me back to that time.  I enjoyed it - listening to the gossip of the older ladies and earning enough money to visit the new trendy boutique which had opened up in the nearest town.
    Gardening in East Suffolk on dry sandy soil.
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,715
    I grow the tall hardy variety,plenty of staking, cutting garden,very windy where we live,they are a good MTR tall. The button type lots of little flowers,I cut the lot,too many to dead head,down to the next leaf branch,they come back every year.
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