Saturday, September 18, 2010


I received an email the other day that one of my bulb orders has been shipped.  Mail orders will start arriving in late September, through October.  Oriental lilies can even be later--in November.  However, if you start preparing your soil now, you'll be ready when they arrive, or when you purchase some at your local nursery or variety store.  They like soil rich in organic matter, and well drained, but evenly moist.  A site that is wet will rot the bulbs. Bulbs are versatile, colorful, easy to plant, and I think every garden needs some.  Check on the planting guide of the bulb you are planting--some need sun, but others require shade.  They can be planted in large drifts, or small groupings--odd numbers look best--3, 5, 7, or 9.  Avoid the "soldier" look--single, straight rowsSome have suggested randomly throwing a group of bulbs out and planting them where they land for a nice, natural look. You should plant your bulbs as soon as you get them for best results.  If you can't, however, store them in a dark, cool place until you can.  A general rule to follow is to plant the bulbs 3 times as deep as the bulb is in size.  This can mean you'll be planting anywhere from an inch or two, up to 8 inches deep for the larger bulbs. And, by planting bulbs of different bloom times, you can enjoy flowers for several months.  One of my favorite tulip bulbs is the flaming parrot--a huge yellow-turning-white and red lacy parrot, pictured in these photos.  I will be planting more of this beauty this fall.  When planting tulips, if you want them to increase, there are certain varieties that perform better for this. Otherwise, plan on replanting tulips every year or so to keep nice, big, vigorous blooms.  When large clumps begin to be too crowded and bloom less, that's a sign that they need to be divided.  You can dig them, and replant immediately where you want them.  Now through October is a good time to do this.  Be careful not to slice into bulbs when dividing; if you do, they will most likely rot after being planted.  When dividing, small bulbs can be replanted, but bare in mind that they probably won't bloom for a couple of years.  One thing is certain, though, a little work now in the beds will really pay off in the spring with beautiful blooms!
Susanne Holland Spicker Mother, Grandmother, Homemaker, Gardener, Teacher, Photographer

Passion is defined as the love of, or the object(s) of affection and emotion. I am passionate about family, friends, flowers, food, photography and fabulous music! This blog is dedicated to those loves.

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