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Plant of the Month - September

Plant of the Month - September

Our plant of the month is the chrysanthemum. It's great for filling in bare patches or brightening a dull spot where summer colour has faded. Like dahlias, the chrysanthemum has become popular again for its cheery blooms, and butterflies love it. 

When choosing a chrysanthemum plant, look for plenty of unopened buds to come. The earlier you plant it the longer the flowering display and the better it will manage through the winter. To over-winter, plant it this month in a sheltered spot, mulch heavily, and leave the foliage on until spring. 

If you have a traditional or cottage garden, the chrysanthemum will fit right in. For something a little different, mix it with grasses such as Miscanthus sinensis, Pennisetum and Stipa to create your own little prairie. As well as looking good through the autumn, it will attract an abundance of wildlife.

Moving indoors, the chrysanthemum makes a lovely pot plant with its cheerful daisy flowers. Its effective at cleaning the air, making it a useful houseplant. Because of this, you'll need to water quite often, perhaps up to twice a week. Aim to keep the soil damp. Most flowering houseplants, including the chrysanthemum, will keep their flowers for longer if temperatures are on the average to low side, so keep them in a cool place.