You may have read the blog title and thought what are they talking about? Who can grow flowers in the dead of Winter? Well, have you ever heard of "forcing bulbs"? It's the process of forcing potted garden bulbs to bloom earlier than they normally world.
By following the few steps listed below you can have colorful fresh flowers blooming indoors, on your patio, or a porch area. It's fairly easy to do and we can almost guarantee great success. Just think, sweet smelling flowers in January!
Step 1 - Select the containers you are going to use. There are many choices of garden pottery you can choose. A shallow terracotta bowl is perfect since bulbs don't have deep roots. You can also use a standard flowerpot that does have depth. This type of pottery is perfect if you want to layer your bulbs.
You may ask yourself, why layer bulbs? This is the method of putting a layer of the tallest bulbs on the bottom of the pot because they will grow the tallest. Covering them with soil and creating a second layer. Put Daffodils next, cover with soil and create another layer for shortest crocus bulbs. If you stagger each layer, they will bloom at different times so you will have flowers blooming longer instead of all at once.
Back to containers - you can also use pretty much anything you choose except they must have the drain hole covered with broken pot shards or pot filler. This helps to keep the moisture inside.
Next have potting soil that is well draining & your bulbs. Plant the bulbs in the soil ending with soil on top so that all bulbs are protected from the cold. Now place the garden container in a cool, dark spot for 12 to 16 weeks. Make sure it's cool and never gets over 50 degrees. Under a staircase or on a spare closet are good places.
Step 2 - Once you see good root formation, it's time to place them in a cooler spot in direct sunlight. This lets the potted bulbs become accustomed to the warmth. Keep the soil moist. After they have good growth move to where you want to keep them. They should bloom in 3 to 4 weeks.
Enjoy the blooms through out Winters harsh months and let the fragrance fill your home.
Are you experiencing a chill in the air in your neck of the woods? Crisp October weather provides ideal planting conditions for hardy bulbs, including daffodil, tulip, hyacinth, crocus, grape hyacinth, snowdrop, and more.... Planted this month, these kinds of bulbs that can easily be potted and planted now, will bloom perfectly next spring. Now is the time to give them a chance to root into the cool dark soil before the weather turns to freezing. Here are a few tips on how to achieve this potting wonder from Arizona Pottery?
Pick the best spot to place the Arizona Pottery garden planters you want to plant them into. Make sure that come spring and summer they will have as much sun as possible At least 6 hrs of full sun is best. Next fill the pot with good well draining soil. You can purchase special garden soils available at your local nursery for this purpose. Loose soil is ideal for the root systems to work into. Make the soil organic if possible for the best performance. You can mix compost into the soil to really help with healthy root systems.
Cluster the bulbs into the Arizona Pottery garden pots mixing one bold color or mixing a combination of colors to create the effect that you are trying to achieve. We love pink & white mixed together. Yellow and red mixed make a very bold statement of color that is stunning. Place the root side down with the growing tip up and cover with soil. Place it two to three times its height into the hole. Compact the soil to eliminate air pockets and cover the top soil with garden mulch up to 3" in depth.
Use a garden trowel to make the planting easier. Power drills work good for larger pots but are not necessary. We like to stick bulbs around potted evergreen plants so that come Spring there will be bursts of color.
You are asking yourself - "Why are they talking about Spring bulbs right now?" Well, it's because if you don't get them into the ground before it freezes they aren't going in. "And what does that have to do with Spring Color?" Well, it's because if you don't plant them now they won't be blooming next Spring!!!!!
Here's a few tips to help.
1. Put color up front. Bright tulips like the pink Debutante shown below demand a close look. Planting brights along a pathway gives you a front row view of their changing blooms. And with them in a such a lovely border there is always something new to see. If you decide to plant them in the bottom of a large garden pot, make sure it's on a front porch where they will be noticed, or on a patio area where there are chairs nearby. Try placing them in a staircase pattern. What does that mean? Well, in any vibrant border, it's important to use plants that offer a new color at every height for a visually interesting display.
2. Use the 3 in 1 rule. You can buy and plant the tulips at the same time so completing the border takes only one planting. To do that start with one 3" wide free form cluster of tulips by using about 5 bulbs per square foot, then surround it with a 1" wide cluster of supporting bulbs. White tulips like the Mount Tacoma, shown below look most striking when planted in the backyard or on your property edge
All white color schemes are really beautiful when viewed from a distance. No color reads better from faraway. Pairing tall white tulips which grow between 18" & 30" inches with shorter plantings, like the hosta 12 to 15" inches enhances the elegance of an all white border or planter pot. Each tulip shows about 6 inches of stem, which gives them an especially airy, graceful look.
When is the perfect time to plant tulips? Right now!!! Just remember a sunny border or garden pot- go bright or a shady border or planter pot - go white!
This article was found in Gardening How To and we thought it was important information and should be passed along.
There's something wonderful about planting bulbs. No matter how cold it is outside, you get a taste of spring when you kneel in the dirt to settle your future flowers into their new homes. You can already visualize your hard work paying off in a neighbor-stopping show of flowers after months of winter brown.
Too bad our spring dreams are so often spoiled by hungry critters. Animals can detect fresh bulbs in the ground, and they'll head over to your newly dug beds for a tasty snack as soon as you go inside for a cup of coffee.
Luckily, there are lots of things you can do to protect your bulbs. Here are a few tips that are both effective and nontoxic - they won't harm humans, pets, or wildlife.
The easiest way to keep squirrels, deer, mice, and other creatures from eating your bulbs is to plant bulbs they don't like. Animals love the taste of tulips and crocuses far more than any other bulbs. Others, like daffodils, alliums, and fritillaries, taste or smell so awful that critters leave them alone.
The bad news is, of course, that you'd have to go without tulips and crocuses to be truly safe from critters. And for a lot of gardeners, spring just isn't spring without these two beauties. If you're in this category, don't worry - you can still plant your favorites. You'll need to rig up a barriers to keep pests from digging up your bulbs.
Once you've placed the bulbs, spread a length of chicken wire over the top of them, tucking the edges into the soil. Then cover everything with soil just like you normally would. The wire won't be visible, and the bulbs will easily send up shoots thought the spaces in the wire. Be sure to get rid of all your planting debris, especially any leftover bulb tunics, which smell good and will attract squirrels like crazy.
A less tidy but equally effective strategy is to lay old window screens on top of your newly planted bulb beds. The screens are too heavy for squirrels to move and too difficult to dig through. But they allow for good air circulation and rainfall. Remove the screens after three or four weeks, when the new-bulb smell has dissipated and the ground has settled.
Don't have screens? For smaller areas, use boards or pot bases weighted down with rocks to cover beds until curious squirrels have moved on to other things.
Some gardeners skid barriers altogether and give their bulbs a protective suit of armor by dipping them in solutions like Bulb Guard and Propel. These products make bulbs taste and smell bad so that so that a wide range of critters, including squirrels, gophers, and voles, will leave the alone.
Keep fall foraging squirrels away from bulbs by giving them other things to munch on. Feeders that offer peanuts or dried corn are a good choice.
If you love tulips and don't want to worry about whether squirrels will devour your bulbs, try purchasing potted, pre-grown tulips in the spring. They are available at garden center once the weather warms up, these tulips will likely be safe from squirrels, who forage much less in spring than fall. Once they're in the ground, treat them like you would any other tulip in your garden.