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Crocus speciosus

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Garden Beds and gate
 Page 11
Planting and tending your garden bulbs.

Bulbs for every setting.

Lilies and Bellflowers. 

        Lilies are rewarding plants to grow in planters. They produce an abundance of spectacular flowers that last for weeks in summer, yet their demands- a sunny or semi-shady site and a rich, potting mixture are not difficult to meet. For summer flowers, plant the lily bulbs in late autumn, or during the winter in areas not to extreme cold.

            A splash  of colour beneath the trees: Autumn crocus  and cyclamen are excellent for creating a carpet of flowers  under tall trees. They naturalise readily  and will eventually cover the ground  entirely, which is a definite  advantage  in areas where grass struggles  to grow.
  • Autumn-flowering  crocus  such as Crocus  speciosus look good with creeping bugle.  Plant in spring for autumn  flowers.
Lilies for damp shade:  Lords  and ladies  (Arum italicum) should be planted  in autumn.  A handy filler for a shady  area, this lily needs  no maintenance and is very robust. It will naturalise  spontaneously and regrow year after year, spreading  its beautiful green foliage marbled  with white, which is renewed  in November and lasts throughout the winter. As an added  attraction, its flowers are replaced  in August  and September  by clusters  of berries which turn bright red.
  • The sensational  arum lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica) is not just beautiful but useful too. It can actually  improve  the drainage of excessively wet soil. Plant it in spring around  the edges of ponds or in flower beds and borders in cool places. Its large white trumpets  bloom from May to late July. Divide it in autumn and it will regrow  from the rootstock. Cut the foliage back to the ground  and add a mulch.
Planting in crevices:  Autumn-flowering  crocus  can grow through the dense  foliage of rock-garden  plants  such as aubrieta,  and in the small crevices of dry-stone walls.  Plant them in a little soil and cover  with gravel. The autumn-flowering snowdrop  (Galanthus  reginae-olgae)  will also thrive at the top of dry, sheltered  rock gardens.
Discover  irises:  All irises prefer a sunny  position and can be grown from rhizomes or bulbs. Rhizomatous  types  prefer drier soils:  damp soils  encourage  disease.  Although  their flowers  are beautiful, they can be untidy when not in bloom. The dwarf forms  of bulbous iris flower in early spring, while the taller Dutch or English varieties flower in late spring and early summer,  and provide  excellent cut flowers.
Grow crocosmia  for late colour: The scarlet,  orange  or yellow hues of crocosmia will brighten  up even partially shaded sites,  if they are well-drained and sheltered.  These plants are prolific and spread  rapidly.  Divide them in spring.
Planning a fragrant garden:  Plant the hardy  regal lily (Lilium regale), which tolerates all growing conditions,  at the entrance  to your garden. For sweet scents  in late summer and autumn,  opt for Lilium speciosum,  a large Japanese  lily which is also highly perfumed,  but needs  to be planted  in a sheltered position safe  from the first frosts.
Bulb,corm,tuber or rhizomes.
Garden Bulbs
       Lilies and allium have 'true' bulbs. These are formed of fleshy scales surrounding a central bud and attached to its base. Most bulbs should be planted with the tip upwards.

Gladioli and crocus grow from a corm which outwardly resembles a bulb. This a thick modified stem, without scales, on  top of which there is a flowering bud. Every year the corm regenerates by creating a new storage organ at the top. When planting always ensure that the bud is at the top.



Dividing  rhizomatous irises.

                             To  ensure they continue  to flourish, irises need  to be divided every  three years after they flower, in July or August.

Dividing  rhizomatous irises

   Dig up the  rhizomes  carefully, using a fork to  lift as much of the root  growth  as possible.

Rot protection for rhizomatous irises

 The rhizomes can rot where they have been cut. Avoid  this by spraying the
wound with flowers of sulphur.

Lifting  rhizomatous irises

    Take out the rhizomes intact,  brush them  off and cut the stem into 10-15cm sections  with a sharp  knife.

Replanting rhizomatous irises

 Replant the rhizomes. In heavy  soil, leave  the tops exposed; in light soil, plant just below  the surface.


Trimming  rhizomatous irises

Each division should  have several roots and leaves, or a bud. Trim the leaves to half their length.

Watering in rhizomatous irises

Space them  25-50cm apart,  depending  on the variety, and water each divided  plant thoroughly.


Mini Index
 Skips pages. Gets you to a general area.
Garden Bulbs.
Lillies& Alliums.
Flowers until Frost.
Annuals For Summer.
Borders Full of Colour.
 Collecting Seeds.
Foliage Plants.
Garden Gate and flower borders
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