Yellow Mums in Bloom
It's easy to take fall mums for granted, those little autumn blooming flowers unless you have tried to make the plants form those little mounds all by yourself. I gave that up years ago, settling instead for having just non-spindly chrysanthemums in bloom whenever they were ready.
The professional advice is to pinch the mums once a week through July 4th. The pinching keeps the plant low and bushy, as well as branching so that there are more flowers in bloom. That is also supposed to delay blooming so the mums bloom on cue during their designated blooming month in the fall.
I do pinch most of my mums through spring, but not all. I leave a few to grow long and leggy so that I can include them in flower bouquets. The short, stout branches are hard to manage in a vase and that is a shame because mums are one of the longer-lasting cut flowers. It's why they are a popular addition in floral bouquets, they tend to be the last flowers to die off when the rest of the cut flowers have faded.
So it's early August with record summer heat and some of my mums have decided to bloom. This yellow one in particular is having a good time so yes, I am doing absolutely nothing about it. I could trim off the flower buds and try to delay flowering until later but I am not going to touch it.
Some plants bloom slower in hot weather. That's what I am telling myself as I enjoy the bright sunny flowers popping up a good couple of months early. Did I mention I love surprises?