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The Whimsical World of Bulbs: A Gardener's Colourful Ally


Spring’s Rainbow Warriors

Bulbs are the undercover agents of your garden, popping up to bring a splash of colour just when you need it most. Think of tulips as your garden’s mood-lifters, offering a spectrum from mysterious dark purple to pure-as-snow white. They’re like the garden’s own fashion show in spring! And let’s not forget the early risers, snowdrops and scillas, who bravely bloom when most plants are still hitting the snooze button.

Summer’s Drama Queens

Planting summer bulbs like lilies and gladioli is like casting divas in your garden opera. Expect tall, scented blooms that demand attention – and probably a standing ovation.

Autumn’s Surprise Party

Autumn bulbs, such as nerines, are like the unexpected guests at your garden party, bringing unexpected bursts of colour just when you thought the show was over.

Bulb Planting Calendar: Timing is Everything!

  • Autumn: Get those spring-flowering bulbs like daffodils and hyacinths in the ground by September’s end. Tulips, the fashionably late ones, prefer a November planting.
  • Spring: Early spring is showtime for planting your summer-flowering bulbs, like the ever-dramatic gladioli.
  • Summer: When summer starts to wave goodbye, sneak in those autumn-flowering bulbs for a late-season fiesta.

Where to Plant: It’s All About Location, Location, Location

  • Sun Lovers: Hardy bulbs, including show-offs like tulips and daffodils, love a sunny catwalk with good drainage.
  • Shade Seekers: Those preferring a cool, forest-like runway, such as Cardiocrinum, need similar conditions in your garden.

Soil Prep: The Bulb’s Pajamas

  • Light or Sandy Soils: Mix in some peat free compost for a cozy bed.
  • Heavy Soils: It’s a combo of compost and grit for these divas.

How to Plant: The Underground Party

  • Get Them in ASAP: These dormant, rootless party-goers don’t like to wait.
  • Group Therapy: Plant in groups of at least six; it’s a bulb rave, after all!
  • Depth and Spacing: Bury them two to three times their height and give them room to groove.
  • Water Wisely: If the ground is already throwing a moist party, no need to add more drinks.

Container Life: High-rise Living

  • One-season Stay: Think three parts multi-purpose compost to one part grit.
  • Long-term Residence: Opt for a mix of three parts Carbon Gold All Purpose Compost with a touch of grit.
  • Watering and Feeding: Keep the drinks coming when they’re partying (growing) and feed them with a high-potassium cocktail. Ease up as the party winds down.

Troubleshooting: Party Crashers and Late Arrivals

  • Inspect Your Guests: Toss out any bulbs that look a bit under the weather (soft or rotting).
  • Uninvited Guests: Watch out for garden gatecrashers like slugs, snails, and squirrels.
  • Fashionably Late: Missed planting time? Plant them anyway; they might still surprise you with a modest show.

In conclusion, think of bulbs as the life and soul of your garden’s year-round party. With a bit of timing, care, and humor, they’ll ensure your garden is the talk of the town – or at least the talk of the neighborhood critters! 🌷🌼🌱

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