Life Cycle Med Singles By Malcolm & Audrey Simpson

Late Flowering Singles

These are sections 7a (Large) and 7b (Medium) of the National Chrysanthemum Society classification register. The “Daisy” style flowers come in many shades and vary in size; therefore, they make an excellent cut flower for both floral art and home decoration.
The Life Cycle of Late Singles
December - After shows, selected plants are labelled, cut down to 6” high, knocked out of pots, cut into 4” cubes and boxed up into soilless compost, lightly watered in and left in a frost free greenhouse that is well ventilated.
January - Plants are brought into the greenhouse to warm up and given a good watering to make sure all the compost is moist.
February - Cuttings are taken, 1½ to 2” long dipped in rooting powder, put into seed trays in rooting compost of 3 parts peat to 1 part perlite, watered in and placed on the propagating bench. Bottom heat of 70°F top heat 45°F
March - Once rooted, cuttings are potted into 3½“pots, the compost consists 6 parts soilless compost to 1 part perlite. Lightly watered in and placed into a cool greenhouse 40-45°F
April - Once cuttings have filled the 3½“pot they are potted into 5” pots using the same compost. Cuttings receive the first stop this consists of taking a small pinch out of the growing tip.
May - Once the plants are growing on, this is the time to place them into the cold frame to harden off. At this time mix the final compost which is 3 parts soilless compost, 3 parts John Innes No2 and 1 part grit. All final pots are washed and stepped prior to use. Once 5” pots are full of root, water pots prior to potting on. When potted leave at least 2” from the top of pot for top dressing. The potted off plants are placed into the cold frame pot thick.
June - When required the 2nd stop takes place, remove the tip out of each break. All plants are placed onto the standing ground, 3 canes inserted around the pot and encircle with twine. During this time, alternate weekly spraying of Fungicide and Insecticide.
July - After plants have been potted on for 6 weeks, commence half strength balanced liquid feeding twice a week. A layer of top dressing is applied to all pots, tying in all breaks as they are growing.
August - Another top dressing is applied, half an inch of compost. Once buds are standing clear in the tips of the laterals, remove all but the central bud. The surplus breaks are removed leaving 4+1 breaks for large and 8+1 breaks for mediums. Over the next 10 days remove all growth that appears in the axils.
September - When the buds start to split during the last week in September, they are sprayed and bud bagged. The greenhouse is fumigated and washed down prior to lining with fleece ready for pots to be housed.
October - Prior to housing remove the surplus break and bud bags, spray with insecticide and fungicide making sure all parts of the plant are covered. Plants are kept evenly moist only watering when the top of the compost is dry.
November - Selected blooms are cut 48 hours before the show and placed into vases of water. The following day attach split canes to stems with twist ties. The bloom is turned upside down and a disc is placed under the petals and a spring type peg is used to hold in place. This helps when transporting the blooms to the show. At the show remove the discs whilst staging the blooms in vases.