Leaves on chrysanthemum are gone

Asked July 9, 2016, 10:04 AM EDT

This is a 3 part question. The first is that all of the leaves on my Mom's 2 Mums are gone (I am pretty sure they were eaten). The mums were planted last year and she cut them back once. Her primroses and rose plant have also had there leaves eaten (but not entirely). This site gets the afternoon sun. It is also an established garden where her plants have always done well. This year for the first time she had a company put down mulch which I think they made it much to thick. She does not know what mulch they used but it looks shredded. I recall reading something one time about insects or disease problems with heavy mulching. I gave her some insecticidal soap which she says has done nothing (mums were already eaten at this point). 1. Is there anything she can do at this point and do you think the mums will come back this year. 2. any idea what it could be (I would just like to know and learn from this) 3.What are your thoughts about the mulch, should she tell them next year to put less. I could take a picture but there really isn't anything to see.

Anne Arundel County Maryland

1 Response

It sounds like some kind of four legged critter may have eaten your mother's chrysanthemum. Is it possible that her rose had rose slugs, which are common? Critters sometimes leave a bit and that bit sometimes comes back. Other than watering when the soil is dry, there is not much that she can do. Without photos, we can only guess what is going on.
Mulch should not be more than about two inches thick. http://pubs.ext.vt.edu/426/426-724/426-724_pdf.pdf vw