Many of us think we know chrysanthemums. We see them at the grocery store and appreciate how the flowers can be accented with ribbons or ornaments for a homecoming game. But Jessica Hall, head grower at Harmony Harvest Farm in Wyers Cave, Virginia, wants us to know that this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Hall, her mother (Chris Auville) and sister (Stephanie Duncan) are the brains and geniuses behind their family’s flower business, which is on a lively mission to bring back long-lost heirloom varieties. “People are shocked to learn that these beautiful flowers are mums,” says Hall.
This wonder goes beyond the kaleidoscope of colors and flower shapes. When mommy gardeners who sign up for the farm’s annual watch list receive bare-root plants for their gardens, they’ll also find that the flowers are easy to grow.
Each package includes a variety of varieties so recipients can experiment in their range and see what hits their fancy. And for those who don’t want a garden but still want a feast for the eyes, Harmony Harvest has a strong offering of cut flowers that they carry. All of this points to the main reason the family started raising them in the first place. As Hall explains, “We just want to make the world a better place with flowers.”
Mothers can keep a grower year-round. When their bright blooms are over, help them get through the winter and watch them bloom next season. Then you can take the cuttings and grow more plants. If stems are picked at the time of flowering, their vase life is about two weeks – but sometimes it can be extended longer.
The flower that is full of emotion can turn to lavender or gray, sometimes it changes the color of red wine.
When this bright chrysanthemum is in full shape, it resembles the ball shape of its name.
Warm orange leaves are a bright spot in the traditional fall color palette. In full bloom, the cushion is large and lush.
Featuring curled, narrow salmon-colored petals, this mum is easy to cut.