Winter Preparation Of Chrysanthemums - Knowledgebase Question

Cedar Grove, NJ
Avatar for cemmolo
Question by cemmolo
December 3, 1999
I just cut my Mums for the winter preparation and I usually cover them with evergreens for the cold winter. My question is could I use pine needles instead of evergreens branches and would it effect the roots of my mums?

Answer from NGA
December 3, 1999
Pine needles would be a possible substitute although you will need to try to keep them from packing down in a mat atop the crowns of the plants. The reason for using evergreen branches is that they allow for air flow and reduce the chance of any rot occurring during wet spells. In spring you would need to remove most of the pine needles (if they are in a very thick layer ) to avoid overly acidifying the soil as they decompose.

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