Chrysanthemum Flower Production.
Have you ever driven past a field and overhead lights were on covering the whole field? Chances are that the grower had a crop of Chrysanthemum flowers and needed lighting to control flower production.
Chrysanthemums are what is called ‘short day length’ plants. That is that the plants will flower once the day length is shortened. That’s why Chrysanthemums flower in May or thereabouts. The lights over the crop are used as a crop management strategy. When the grower wishes to time his crop to meet demand – say Mother’s Day – he uses the lights to hold off flowering until there is maximum demand for them. Likewise, if the grower wishes to produce a crop of Chrysanthemums ‘out of season’ he uses a greenhouse covered in black plastic to fool the plant into thinking that short day length conditions have arrived and so the plant flowers.
There are many varieties of Chrysanthemums and there are even more hybrids most of which are produced in China. The Chinese have been growing them since the 15th century BC and have a special place for them in their culture. The Japanese started growing them in the late 8th century AD and the imperial court held its first Chrysanthemum show in the year 910. The official seal of Japan is the Chrysanthemum and the Emperor sits on the Chrysanthemum Throne. Over 500 cultivars were recorded up to 1630 produced by both countries and they are still doing so.
Our store could never hope to stock seed of all available Chrysanthemums and cultivars/hybrids have to be grown from cuttings (or tissue culture) to produce the exact same plant/flower (it is in fact cloning). We stock Robinson’s Painted Daisy (Chrysanthemum coccinea), Pure White (C. paludosum), and Early Snowland (C. paludosum), photographs of which appear below.
We wish you Happy & Successful Gardening