Cascade chrysanthemums have long been at the heart of Longwood Gardens’ annual Chrysanthemum Festival. Longwood grows specialty mums (Chrysanthemum x moriflorum) that originated in China and Japan and are selected for their ability to create beautiful and lasting forms. Over the years, Longwood’s amazing show of form and color has been continually modified and refined. Guests marvel at the captivating shapes and often ask us how we create these wonderful pieces of horticulture. The following is meant to highlight a little behind-the-scenes action and hint at some of the spectacular forms you will see this November in our Conservatory.
Beginning 15 months before the display date, the design team, in conjunction with the grower, makes final chrysanthemum cultivar choices for the following year. Stock plants—from which we take all of our final plants—are created in order to bulk up on material. In mid-December the final plants are started as small cuttings. We begin heavy (more…)