Do Chrysanthemums Come Back Every Year? Are They Perennials?

Generally speaking, yes – chrysanthemums come back each year. However, some circumstances can lead to their decline, so it is important to check with your local garden center on caring for them if you have chrysanthemums.

It is typically too late to plant them in the fall because they are devoting their energy to flowering rather than growing roots at that point. If you produce them early in the fall and select plants with tight buds rather than those in full bloom, you will increase your chances of success. In warm climates, planting in the fall will also provide better results. Planting them in the spring season will ensure that they come back year after year in any parts of the region.

You can divide your mums in the spring if they start to outgrow their space in your garden or if they become crowded out by other perennials. Remove a section of the plant from the outside using a trowel, a garden knife, or a spade, and then replant it in a different part of your garden. As the new plant becomes established, keep these areas moist.

There are two varieties of mothers: garden mums, sometimes hardy mums, and florist mums. Garden mums flourish in USDA Hardiness zones 4 to 9, whereas florist mums, such as the ones you buy at grocery stores in gift pots, are only hardy in USDA Hardiness zones 7 to 9.

Some plants, like chrysanthemums, come back every year. Other plants may not come back each year, or they may only come back a certain number of times before they die.

Chrysanthemums are classified as perennial plants. However, for them to flower the following year again, you must plant them at the beginning of the growing season. Suppose you don’t plant mums in your garden until they become readily available at nurseries and garden centers in the fall. In that case, they won’t have enough time to establish before winter weather. Planting them early in the year, especially in the spring, will give them more time to adjust to their new surroundings.

The Importance of Preseason Care

Indoors, newly acquired potted mums need to be maintained with a steady amount of moist but not damp air, and they should be placed in bright, indirect light. To maintain a level of health that will allow them to return the next year successfully, they require at least five hours of full sun exposure outside. It is important to remove spent flowers from a plant so that it maintains its attractive appearance and does not expend its energy on developing seeds. It is unnecessary to fertilize chrysanthemums during their first year of growth because they typically receive everything they require for their debut season from the nursery where they were purchased. When the plants are completely through blooming, cut them back to a height of between 4 and 6 inches.

Maintaining Position in the Pots

After you have pruned the top growth of the chrysanthemum plant, you can protect the roots from the cold by burying pots in the earth around the base of the plant. Although garden mums are considered cold-resistant down to USDA zone 7, potted plants can have cold resistance that is two zones lower if the pot is allowed to remain upright. During the winter, chrysanthemum pots can be kept in various locations, including an unheated garage, porch, or shed. Plants brought indoors for the winter only need to be watered roughly once a month or whenever they become dry. After the weather has warmed up in the spring, move them outside to the garden. The plants can be removed from the pots and placed in an out-of-the-way location with sand, sawdust, or other organic mulch piled on top of the soil. You can then repot them when your cool-weather potted annuals finish blooming. You can do this if you have plans for the containers from winter to early spring. You can do this if you have plans for the containers from winter to early spring.

Spring to Autumn

Chrysanthemums that were pushed into bloom to flower during the off-season in the spring will be able to rebloom in the fall if you cut them back and plant them in the ground after they have finished flowering. They will not rebloom the following spring because their bloom in the spring was forced. However, if you put them in an area with full sunlight and adequate drainage, they should resprout to bloom in the fall. Compost can be worked into the soil before planting, and then a spoonful of low-nitrogen fertilizer with a ratio of 5-10-5 can be sprinkled around each plant to fuel its growth throughout the warm summer months. It is helpful for the plant to have its branches cut down in the fall, if it will flower again, and to have a good layer of mulch around it. This will allow it to grow back stronger in the spring. Chrysanthemums planted in containers in the spring have a greater chance of surviving the winter than those planted directly in the ground in the fall. This is because the roots of spring-planted chrysanthemums have more time to develop before winter hibernation.


It is common practice for nurseries to pot three or four little mum plants together to create a more stunning plant for sale. If you remove any old, brown top growth from your overwintered mums in the spring when they begin to sprout, you should be able to see exactly how many plants you have available to deal with. Remove any clumps of soil from the pots, then shake out the remaining soil. You can repot each one as an individual chrysanthemum plant or combine them in large containers with other fall-blooming perennials, annuals, or foliage plants that require full sun. Chrysanthemums are a great choice. Even if you don’t want to divide the plants, purchasing new potting soil is still a smart investment. You could use a potting mix that already contains a slow-release fertilizer, or you could feed your plants with a water-soluble foliar 10-15-10 fertilizer every two weeks at a rate of one teaspoon per gallon of water, or as the label on your particular brand directs you to do, until you see flower buds forming.