CHRYSANTHEMUM PLANTING MATERIAL

ROOTED CUTTINGS

Last season’s stools are kept in a cold frame or greenhouse. Cuttings 2-3 in. long are taken in February-April from the new shoots at the base (not the side) of the stems. These are rooted at 50°-60°F and then transferred into 3 in. pots.

SEEDS

Seeds are not used to propagate Chrysanthemums because the plants produced are rarely true to type. The Charm and Cascade varieties are exceptions-these are raised from seed sown in February.

STAKING

Insert a stout bamboo cane to a depth of 12-15 in. before planting large-flowered or tall-growing varieties. Tie the stem fairly loosely to the stake, using soft string. Make additional ties as the plant grows. Extra staking in August-September may be necessary.

GROWING

GREENHOUSE VARIETIES

In April transfer the rooted cuttings from 3 in. to 5 in. pots. In mid May move into 8 in. pots and insert one or more stout canes to support the stems. As with Outdoor varieties, stopping is necessary. In early June move the pots outdoors on to a standing ground of ashes, tiles orconcrete. Secure the plants to wires stretched between stout posts. Water regularly, but do not keep the compost constantly soaked. At the end of September bring the pots back indoors. Disbud as necessary. Feed regularly until the buds show colour.

STOPPING

When the plant is about 8 in. tall, the soft growing tip should be pinched out or stopped. This wi stimulate the early growth of flower-bearing side shoots (breaks). Do not reduce the number of breaks when growing for garden display – reduce to 8 if growing for cut flowers or 3 if growing for exhibition. In July, pinch out the side shoots which have developed on the remaining breaks.

PLANTING

Plant out rooted cuttings in early May. Water pots thoroughly the day before and use a trowel to dig a hole in the moist ground which is wider but only slightly deeper than the soil ball of the cutting. Never plant Chrysanthemums too deeply. Fill the hole with fine soil and press down firmly. Water in, butdo not water again forabout a week.

MULCHING

Do not hoe after the middle of June. Keep the soil cool and moist by applying a 2 in. layer of peat or compost around the plants.

WATERING & FEEDING

Water thoroughly during dry spells, but do not keep the ground constantly soaked. Overhead spraying of the foliage is beneficial. Feed every fortnight with a liquid fertilizer, such as Instant Bio, until the buds begin to swell.

PESTS & DISEASES

Slugs and birds are serious early pests – young plants can be devoured or stripped. Use Slug Pellets and stretch cotton around the plants. Aphids, capsids, leaf miner and earwigs can all be troublesome. Use a

SITE AND SOIL

Pick a spot which receives at least a few hours sunshine on a bright day. Never plant under trees. Most soils are satisfactory provided they are well-drained. Liming is not necessary – Chrysanthemums prefer slightly acid condi-tions. In winter dig in plenty of organic matter – there is no need to dig deeper than one spade’s depth. Rake in 4 oz of Bone Meal per sq. yd.

STORING STOOLS

In November, cut back the stems to about 6 in. Lift the roots carefully and shake off the soil. Trim off any leaves and tie a label to each stem. These prepared roots (stools) should be closely packed into boxes and surrounded by compost. Store the boxes in a cold frame and begin watering when newgrowth appears.

DISBUDDING

When growing large varieties for cut flowers the aim is to produce one superb bloom perstem. Disbudding is therefore carried out, which means the removal of every unwanted lateral shoot and bud on the stem. This is referred to as securing the bud.

BAGGING

Many exhibitors use bags or plastic sheets to protect their outdoor show blooms. Bagging is a popular technique for white or yellow varieties; a greaseproof paper bag is placed over the opening flower bud as soon as the petal colour can be seen. /,

DECORATIVE TYPES

Medium-flowered: up to 6 in. in diameter Large-flowered: 6-10 in. in diameter

INCURVED

Florets are turned towards the centre. Bloom forms a tight ball.

Outdoor examples:

Medium-flowered ‘Martin Riley (yellow) ‘Nancy Matthews’ (white)

Large-flowered ‘Derek Bircumshaw’ (yellow) ‘Evelyn Bush’ (white)

INTERMEDIATE

Florets are loosely and irregularly incurved or partly reflexed.

Outdoor examples:

Medium-flowered ‘Cricket’ (white) ‘Claret Glow’ (deep pink)

Large-flowered ‘Keystone’ (purple) ‘Escort’ (red)

REFLEXED

Florets are turned outwards and downwards from the centre.

Outdoor examples:

Medium-flowered ‘Karen Rowe’ (pink) ‘Regalia’ (rosy purple)

Large-flowered ‘Tracy Waller’ (pink) ‘Abundance’ (yellow)

SMALL-FLOWERING & SPRAY TYPES

SINGLE-FLOWERED

Not more than 5 rings of ray florets. Central group of disc florets.

Examples: ‘Abel Miles’ (red) ‘Peggy Stevens’ (yellow) ‘Pat Joice’(pink) ‘Ben Dickson’ (orange)

SPIDERY-FLOWERED

Florets are thread-like or spoon-shaped.

Examples: ‘Pink Rayonnante’ (pink, spidery) ‘Pietro’ (red, spidery) ‘Tokio’ (white, spidery) ‘Magdalena’ (yellow, spooned)

ANEMONE-FLOWERED

Not more than 5 rings of ray florets. Central cushion of tubular florets.

Examples: ‘Flying Saucer’ (white) ‘Oliviero’ (purple) ‘Vivien’ (red) ‘Beautiful Lady’ (pink)

KOREAN HYBRIDS

Late-flowering bushy plants for the open garden – can be left in the soil for 2-3 years. Examples: ‘Sunny Day’ (yellow) and ‘Caliph’ (red)

SPRAYS

Outdoor and Greenhouse varieties for general display – many small flowers borne on each branched stem.

Examples: ‘Anne Ladygo’ (pink) and ‘Pennine Silver’ (white)

CHARMS

Pot plants producing a domed shape covered with masses of small Daisy-like flowers. Examples: ‘Red Charm’ and ‘Yellow Charm’

CASCADES

Pot plants with Charm-like flowers and trailing growth habit. Examples: ‘White Cascade’ and ‘Pink Cascade’

POMPON

Florets are tightly packed (not curled), forming a small globular bloom.

Examples: ‘Denise’ (yellow) ‘Fairie’ (pink) ‘Cream Bouquet’ (cream) ‘Bob’ (red)

A Chrysanthemum flower is made up of numerous florets. Each floret is really a miniature flower with fused petals, and the shape and type of florets which are present provide the key to identification. They may be small, club-like and on a central disc (disc florets) or in a similar position but larger and tube-like (tubular florets). The so-called ‘petals’ are actually ray florets. In a double bloom only ray florets can be seen, and the direction in which these ray florets are curled to make up the bloom is an important recognition point.

Chrysanthemum ‘Yellow Rayonnante’

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