Mums the Word (and Asters, too!)
If you want them to be truly perennial, then plant as soon as possible in a sunny spot in rich soil, and do not cut-back the first Fall. Mums are always taller the second season!
Asters are similar to mums, but bloom a bit earlier in shades of purple, lavender, pink, and white. They tend to be more perennial than mums, but are also taller and wider the second season unless faithfully pruned and pinched. Asters are a great favorite with bees, and are an important source of nectar to the hive in Fall!
Both asters and mums are usually available in smaller pot sizes, which makes them perfect for freshening up tired window boxes and planters. Either replant the entire container with fresh stock, or save existing spikes , grasses, ivies, and vinca and add asters, mums, or kale for a new look. Of course, potted mums and asters can be displayed with cornstalks, hay bales, pumpkins, and a scarecrow for a classic Autumn decoration!