A fascinating bit of history on the Mum which came from Asia and believe you me if a plant is edible they'll be the first to give it a try. There are a surprising number of flowers that make it into their foodchain. The young shoots of the Mums and the leaves are popular in Asian cuisines and the Koreans make a rice wine with it .
Like Shirley McLaine says in Steel Magnolias I guess I'm just a stubborn old Southern woman, but I find it hard, if not impossible, to get used to calling my Mums by the new name Dendrantemum. Calling them ' Dens ' just grates on my ears. So you can just kiss my grits 'cause I'm sticking to my Mums .
Reading recent posts in the garden blogging world I see that some gardeners are finally catching on to the love of hardy Mums for colder climates . Kylee over at OurLittleAcre has written a post on 'Clare Curtis' ( pictured above ) an outstanding variety that blooms as early as July and keeps on going until frost. What more can you ask of a perennial , except maybe that it be evergreen and colonize ?
Last Fall I planted 'Bolero' , 'Samba' and 'Rumba' , all Korean varieties that bloom later than 'Clare Curtis' and continue the Fall show until the very end. I love their colors of orange and yellow as a contrast to the pink of 'Clare Curtis '.
Unfortunately it's difficult to find these varieties at nurseries. A good online source is LazyssFarm which carries a good selection.