All flower bulbs
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Flower bulbs are so easy to grow
They are very rewarding; producing some of the biggest, brightest flowers and require the least amount of effort. Spring flowering bulbs can get a lot of attention from passersby, but there are many flower bulbs that also bloom in summer and well into autumn.
Flowering bulbs may be annuals, biennials, or perennials, which will produce a wide variety of blooms and foliage. Whether you're an experienced gardener or just planning your very first flower bed, bulbs should be a fundamental part of your plans.
Bulbs work beautifully in flower beds or containers, and can complement other plants or make a stunning statement when grouped together. We have everything from Tulips and Daffodils to Asiatic lilies and from tall stately Gladiolus to highly fragrant Oriental Lilies.
How to plant Flower Bulbs in Autumn (Fall) for Spring Flowering
General instruction on planting of Flower Bulbs for Spring Blooming
Plant Flower Bulbs between mid September and December. Plant your bulbs in time and according to the weather (your local area). Flower Bulbs must have roots before the frost freezes the ground. The rooting takes up about 3 - 4 weeks depending on soil temperature. In frost prone zones give always mulch on top of the planting area after planting to help protect. For example you can use old leaves, fix the leaves with some earth on top or use peat moss.
Plant Flower bulbs (rule of Thumb) 3 x the bulb height deep use thios guide line a a minimal planting depth.
In warmer areas where the temperature in winter does not go below 10 degrees Celsius store your bulbs in the fridge, vegetable compartment for up to 9 weeks.
Flower Bulbs need a cold spell in order to build the flower and activate the growing cycle. So in warmer climates (USA) you need to fool nature a bit. Applying a moist mulch on top is fine, as it will keep the planting location moist and cool.
How to Plant Summer bulbs
Summer flower bulbs are best planted between late April and end of May, when the Soil has warmed up after winter. Individual Varieties flower at different times so you can enjoy colour in your garden all season long.
First of all make a plan of what you would like and where, take into account the different bloom times of each variety to make sure that you will have many different flowers blooming in your garden at the same time all summer long.
Make sure that you plant your bulbs as soon as you receive them, check that they are firm and Healthy, unhealthy bulbs are often soft and lightweight.
Most summer bulbs like to be planted in a location where they will receive at least 4 hours of sunlight, see details on packaging for the correct information per variety. Plant them in well drained Soil, if your Soil has poor drainage you can improve drainage by mixing in some builders sand or grit, by planting the bulbs on a slope or by making a raised bed. Adding well rotted organic matter will also help improve drainage.
Plant them at three times the bulbs height deep and two or three times their width apart, cover the planting area with some compost. Plant tall bulbs at the back of the border and smaller ones at the front.
Plant Gladioli just below the surface as they like to have a shallow planting depth and they like as much sun as possible.
Begonia’s benefit from being started indoors, plant them in good compost and keep them somewhere warm but out of sunlight until the first sprouts are about 3-5 cm (1 " - 2") above the surface of the Soil, then you can plant the outdoors. They like to have some Shade and need moist and regular feeding.
Dahlia Tubers can be started in a large enough planter already in April, transplant them in the border during mid May, take care that these original South American plants get sufficient sunlight and water. Choose a planting location in line with their growth. Cacti - Semi Cacti en Decorative Dahlia's can grow very large and might need some canes whilst growing up.
The dwarf growing types should be planted from the mid to front of the border.
Summer bulbs are not winter hardy so they must be lifted after the first autumn/winter frosts and stored in a cool, dry, dark frost free place until the following spring.
Planting of Flower bulbs in planters
It is great fun to plant bulbs in planters, you can place the pots in bloom where ever you like, they make a great sight, they can be taken indoors or arranged in a colourful group on your patio. Don't use to small planters, I use mostly 17 cm and upwards, for layer planting (lasagne method) I use planters of 30 - 40 cm wide. Plant your bulbs in a mixture of 1/3 sand with 2/3 potting compost for good drainage. Plant your bulbs halfway down in the planter and leave space between the wall of the planter and the bulb. Once planted I top the pots with extra potting compost and press it down firmly.
Larger planters of earthenware I place in a sheltered corner of the garden and underneath I slide a slab of Polystyrene to avoid freezing up from the bottom. I cover the large planters with and old carpet or cloth. I will bring them out in full daylight by end of February -March depending up on bud development and your local situation, so check during February on the growth and not to forget watering, planters should not become dry. Water if needed.
Smaller planters I do place in a carton box (Banana boxes from the fruit stall are perfect, they last and are easy to carry) fill the box up with peat whilst placing the pots into them. Put a layer of peat over the whole of the box as a final layer of protection. I store the boxes away either in a shed or a sheltered corner of the garden and cover them with some straw or a layer of newspapers. Again start checking from February onwards for bud development and do watch out for drought, they never should be dry.