A touch of elegance
Flower bulbs are great for garden designs because of their beauty and how they add that unique touch. I worked with these plants many years ago and was amazed at how beautiful they were when I saw them in full bloom.
There are many species of bulbs with their array of rainbow colors that will just lighten up your garden and landscape bringing those areas to life.
Bulbs can be planted in flower beds and they also do well in container gardening.
When to plant bulbs?
The best time to plant bulbs is in the fall, this fall planting prepares them for the spring. Now I know you may be thinking that this is such a long wait, but trust me it is worth the wait and you will love the end results as your landscape and garden areas take on a different appearance.
How to plant bulbs?
1. when purchasing bulbs make sure that you are getting quality for your $. Bulbs that appears to be sickly, such as mushy or small is not a good buy, purchase bulbs that are firm and that has a lot of body or mass to them.
2. Give your bulbs a good head start by using good garden soil or compost, this will go a long way in ensuring that your plant is getting that good quality soil.
3. Dig planting holes about four inches deep, this depth is great and will ensure that you have nice strong healthy bulbs.
4. Bulbs love a good drain soil so be careful of how much water you give them because they can die very easy with excess moisture. Some persons plant their bulbs on their sides instead of pointing up to avoid rot. But even if you decide to plant them pointing up just keep in mind though they may need a good soaking be careful with your watering methods.
5. Fertilize bulbs with granular fertilizer, sprinkle just a few in the bottom of the hole at the time of planting as a starter fertilizer and after they bloom you can switch to water soluble or liquid fertilizer. Triple ten or triple twenty is good.
6.Fertilizer bulbs at least once a month.
7. Place mulch around bulbs to keep down weeds because weeds have been known to compete for water and fertilizer.
Animals such as squirrels and many other rodents love to dig up and make a meal out of bulbs. Here are some suggestion to discourage them from your garden areas. Make a cage out of chicken wire and place them around your bulb, sprinkle mothballs around the beds, be care not to let children or pets play with balls, spray the area with hot pepper sauce, install a fence that has good height also you can check with your garden center or plant nursery to see what are other measures you may take.
A common pest that attacks bulbs are aphids, snails, slugs, caterpillars, mites, Trips. To counter attack there are many pesticides that are sold on the market that is safe around humans and children such as insecticidal soaps. etc… to learn more about pesticides that are human and pet- friendly follow the link. In the case of snails and slugs, you can add snail bait or hand pick them and drop them in a bucket of water that contains dish liquid. What you can also do is plant resistant varieties or you can check your garden center to see what other pesticides they have that is safe to use around the home garden.
Planting Bulbs in Containers
Another great way to plant bulbs is by planting them in containers, this method is great especially if you choose the right decorative containers. This call really works wonders.
1.When planting bulbs by container make sure that container accommodates plant so that plant can sit well and have enough room to grow.
2. Use good garden soil or compost like we discussed earlier.
3. Bulbs love a good drain soil so adding about 2 inches of pebbles at the bottom of the pot and then adding soil acts as a good drainage for the plant.
4. Make sure that pot has drain holes to the bottom, to allow excess water to run off.
5.Water as mention earlier.
6. Fertilize as was mention earlier.
7. Confront pest problems as was discussed earlier.
8. Plant various species together for a colorful effect.
Different species of bulbs and their zones
Some examples of bulbs and their zones
A. Anemone-zones 5-9, growing height 6-12 inches.
B. Allium-zones 4-9, growing height 6 inches -3 feet.
C .Amaryllis-zones 9-11, growing height 2 1/2- 3 feet.
D. Caladiums- zones-10-11, growing height 6 inches-3 feet.
E. Colchicum-zones -4-9, growing height 6-12 inches.
F. Crinum lily-zones 7-9, growing height 6 inches -8 feet.
Making bulbs apart of our overall garden design can really add that much -needed color, these plants really do work wonders, so let’s make them a part of our garden and enjoy the beauty that they bring.