Bulb Planting
& Gardening Tips

HOW TO GROW SUMMER FLOWERING BULBS

CONTENTS
AGAPANTHUS
ALBUCCA
ANEMONE
ARISAEMA
BEGONIAS
BESSERA
CALLA
CANNA
COLOCASIA
CLIVIA
CRINUM
CROCOSMIA
DAHLIAS
EUCOMIS
HAEMANTHUS, HYMENOCALLIS, ORNITHOGALUM
GLORIOSA
GLADIOLUS
HIPPEASTRUM PAPILLIO
LILIES
NERINE
OXALIS
ROSCOEA
SAUROMATUM
SPREKELIA
TACCA
TUBEROSE
Summer flowering bulbs are true perennials. They will flourish for years with a little care. In our climate - except for most of the lilies - this means providing them with protection from the first fall frost until the following spring. Don’t be in a hurry to plant them outdoors. Most come from warm countries and like to start in a warm soil. This is much less of a chore when they’re in pots.

SOIL
Bulbs like a rich, well - draining soil. We recommend the following general purpose mixture for containers: 1 part potting soil + 1 part well - rotted manure or compost or leaf mold + 1 part coarse sand.

 Begonia Tuber

PLANTING DEPTH
Is measured from the bottom of the bulb.

FEEDING
Once foliage appears you should feed your pots and containers every few weeks with a with a 7 - 14 - 28 fertilizer. This will give you better results this year and an even larger bulb for next season’s encore performance. Your bulb has grown well if it’s the same size or larger than it was when you first potted it up.

WINTER STORAGE
This depends on how you grew them. Just remember, freshly lifted bulbs are tender. Handle them carefully until they’ve dried out a bit. A scratched or bruised bulb will rot over the winter.

For potted bulbs: Simply bring the entire pot indoors and store in a cool, dark place. Water occasionally to keep the bulbs from drying out.

For bulbs lifted from the garden: Remember it’s important to carefully mark the planting site so when fall arrives you’ll know where they are, what they are, and when they need to be lifted.

HOW TO STORE BULBS INDOORS
This depends on how you grew them. Bring the bulbs or tubers inside after the first light fall frost.

For potted bulbs: Simply bring the entire pot indoors and store in a cool, dark place. Let them go. Always replace your soil when you re-start your bulbs next spring.

I’ve discovered that potted bulbs overwinter best when left undisturbed in their pots. Let them go dry, removing the remaining foliage and dried soil once the bulbs have “cured”. Store them dry in a box or carton completely buried in the chosen material. The ideal temperature range is 5o to 10o C. Good materials for storage include dry peat moss, vermiculite, perlite, wood shavings, or sawdust.

For bulbs lifted from the garden: Remember it’s important to carefully mark the planting site so when fall arrives you’ll know where they are, what they are, and when they need to be lifted. Just remember, freshly lifted bulbs are tender. Handle them carefully until they’ve dried out a bit. A scratched or bruised bulb may rot over the winter.

We also provide detailed instructions with your bulbs when they are shipped.

Need more help? Call us at: (905) 731 - 1950 or 1 - 800 - 339 - 8314 or e-mail us at flower@gardenimport.com

 Agapanthus root

AGAPANTHUS
Plant in pots with good drainage and plenty of room for the roots. Water well and place in a sunny spot outside after the risk of frost is past. Feed every other week with 7 - 14 - 28 or Tomato fertilizer when they are actively growing. Divide and repot every 3 - 4 years.

They aren’t winter hardy. Bring indoors before fall frost and store in a cool protected area such as a cool cellar, enclosed porch or similar spot. Keep between 0 to 8 degrees Celcius. This is important for them to set the next seasons flower buds.

ALBUCCA
Small bulbs that love a sunny spot with a good bake in the summer. They’re best grown in pots 3 in a 20cm (8") pot, 5 in a 25cm (10"), etc. Plant them 5cm (2") deep. Keep them well watered and feed occasionally as soon as the foliage appears. Bring pots indoors before fall frosts and store dry in their pots in a cool spot.

ANEMONE, RANUNCULUS
Soak them overnight before planting out 7-8cm (3") deep and apart in a rich, well drained soil in full sun. Keep them moist during the summer. Lift in the fall and store dry in sand indoors. Anemone and Ranunculus are best treated as annuals.


 Arisaema-griffithii-corm

ARISAEMA
Choose a shaded spot with well - drained, woodsy soil. Be patient, Arisaema are not at all difficult to grow but occasionally they seem to take a while to get around to it (sometimes, a whole season!). Plant the tuber 15cm (6") deep and mulch the spot heavily. Bloom usually appears in June/July.

BEGONIAS
Begonias thrive in full to partial shade, away from hot sun and drying winds.

HOW TO START TUBEROUS BEGONIAS
The optimal time for starting Tuberous Begonias is mid-February to late April. (The later the start, the shorter the period of bloom.). Tubers perform their best if sprouted before planting. Sprouting can be encouraged by soaking the tuber in a 43C water bath for 15 minutes. A little bleach in the bath is recommended to help control powdery mildew.

 Begonia Tuber

Nestle your tubers concave side up in seed trays (see photo) with 1.5 – 2” soil at the bottom. Cover them with ¼” more soil and moisten with a spray bottle. As you can see, by starting them this way you can more in less space. Keep them moist but not soggy. A spray bottle of water does the job nicely. The photo below shows the nestled tubers before covering them up with soil.

 Begonia Tuber


 Potting young Begonia plants

POTTING UP
Grow them on in a bright spot at about 10 – 18C until they’re 2 – 3” tall. Carefully lift the tuber with soil attached and repot in a pot that’s 2” wider than the root area. A 6” pot usually works fine to start. Repot into a larger pot when the roots reach the sides. They don’t need a lot of watering but don’t let them go dry either. Feed every 2 – 3 weeks with a half strength fertilizer that’s low in nitrogen.


 Potting young Begonia plants

BEGONIA ENCANTO ORANGE, WATERFALL RAINBOW
Transplant your young, potted plant into a 6” pot of a well porous soil ( see recipe below ) and grow on in a sunny window. Once it has filled out you’ll need to transplant it into it’s final container. Move it outside once the risk of frosts is past.

The Canadian Begonia Society recommends a potting mix of - 1 part Pro Mix (or other soil-less seed starting mix) - 1 part Peat Moss

Begonias grown in this soil will need feeding through the summer; preferrably with a ferilizer with higher middle and last numbers. We use equal parts of coarse sand, peat moss and well rotted manure.

BESSERA
Plant these small bulbs 6cm. (2.5") deep in pots and grow in full sun. Bring indoors in the fall and store them dry in their pots for the winter.


 Calla bulbs

CALLA
Best grown in containers with a rich soil (see soil above) with the knobby side up and 1cm. (1/2") deep. They like a half - sun situation. These spectacular bulbs flower for over a month. Pots can be plunged in the garden if you wish. Bring your pots indoors for the winter and store dry in a cool, dark place.

CANNA
Transplant your young, potted plant into a 6” pot of a well porous soil and grow on in a sunny window. Once it has filled out you’ll need to transplant it into it’s final container. After the risk of frost is past, plant outdoors in a moist, rich humus soil in full, baking hot sun. Lift in the fall, after the frost has blackened the foliage, cut back, and store indoors upside down in dry peat moss in a coolish spot. The moss may be sprinkled with water occasionally if they dry out.

COLOCASIA
These tropical perennials are very easy to grow provided their soil is consistently moist and you don't put them outside if temperatures are below 20 degrees Celsius. Bring them indoors in late summer when it starts to get cool. You can keep them going as a houseplant in a warm, sunny window or cut back their foliage and let them go dormant in a cool, dark place (don't let them dry out). Varieties with dark or variegated foliage do best in a minimum of 1/2 day sun. The brighter the location the more water they'll need.

CLIVIA
Your Clivia is a pot plant that should spend the summer outdoors in a bright or dappled shade situation and indoors for the winter in a morning only light or bright, indirect light in a cool 100C room for at least a month. Don't water your plant during this cool period. After this cool period you can start to water but not too much. It is better to under water your plant rather than risk root rot.

These are big plants with thick roots. We recommend you pot into an 8" or larger pot and carefully work the soil into the gaps between the roots to minimize air pockets. Water well and tamp down the wet soil firmly to eliminate any remaining air pockets.

They hate to have a wet soil so we recommend a sharply draining soil. Orchid soil is fine but you can also use a peat based soil less potting soil and add 1/4 coarse sand and 1/4 grit. Choose a pot with good drainage and water occasionally, letting them dry between waterings. Feed during the spring and summer with a good quality 15 - 5 - 20 fertilizer.

CRINUM
These big bulbs like to be shallow planted with 1/2 to 3/4 of the bulb above soil level. They like a 15 – 20cm (6 - 8”) pot for 1 bulb. Store dry indoors for the winter.


 Calla bulbs

CROCOSMIA
By nature these bloom in late summer, so it’s a good idea to give them a head start indoors for their first season. Just pot them up 3 - 8" deep in a rich, well-drained soil, water well and grow in a bright, cool window. Replant these out in the garden when frosts are past.

DAHLIAS
Start indoors in April in pots for earlier bloom. They like a soil rich in organic matter, phosphorous and potash. For larger blooms pinch out the side shoots as they appear. In fall, lift after a hard frost (they collapse and turn black), trim the dead stalks, turn upside down and let the tubers dry. Store in dry peat or vermiculite in a cool place.


 Eucomis autumnalis

EUCOMIS
These easy to grow, tender bulbs come from South Africa. Pot then in a well drained soil (see recipe above). The bulb should just be covered with soil. Water well and grow on in full sun. Remove the flower stalks before they go to seed. Bring the pot and all indoors before fall frost and store in the pot in a cool, dark place. Water them occasionally to keep the bulb from drying out. Replace the soil the following spring to start the cycle over again.


 Hymenocallis bulbs

HAEMANTHUS, HYMENOCALLIS, ORNITHOGALUM
These flower best if pot bound. Plant the bulbs 2 - 3" deep; 3 bulbs to a 25cm. (10") pot. Give them a rich soil (see potting soil recipe above) in a sunny spot. Bring your pots indoors in the fall and store dry for the winter.


 Gloriosa tubers

GLORIOSA
These are best grown in containers. Plant the bulb flat 3 - 4" in an extra gritty, well - drained soil indoors about 1 month before your last frost date. Water well and don't water again until growth starts. Grow on outdoors in a half - shade light. They’ll need something to climb on.


 Gladiolus-callianthus-bulbs

GLADIOLUS
For a long display of bloom plant successively at two week intervals beginning in June until July, when all risk of frost has passed. When the foliage is about 15cm. (6") tall spray with an insecticidal soap to control THRIPS. Repeat this spray again 2 or 3 weeks later. After the first frost lift, discard the old corms (on the bottom of the new corm) and store the new corms dry at about 10o C (52 o F) with good ventilation.

LILIES
It’s best to plant them as soon as they arrive or as soon as the soil has thawed out. If this is inconvenient, pot them up or keep the package cool and unopened in your refrigerator until you can plant outdoors. Prepare the planting site carefully because lilies don’t like to be moved once they’re planted. Remove the spent blooms but leave the foliage. Mulch your lilies well for their first winter. Lilies are perfectly hardy in most parts of Canada and DO NOT NEED TO BE LIFTED.

NOTE: Martagon hybrid lilies may not show growth above ground until the following spring. MARK THEIR SPOT CAREFULLY.


 Nerine-bulb

NERINE
Plant in pots with the neck of the bulbs above the soil surface. They like a well drained, fertile soil and full sun. Water sparingly until foliage appears and freely during the growing season of early summer until their foliage turns yellow. Keep them dry until their flowers appear in the fall and late winter. They flower best when pot-bound, so don't give them too big a pot. Store dry for the winter indoors.


 Oxalis-triangularis-bulbs

OXALIS
These great little bulbs grow just about anywhere. Lay the bulbs on their sides, covering them with about 3cm of soil and about 10cm (4") apart. Lift in the fall and store indoors.

They are even better in containers where their unique foliage stands out. Move their pots outside in a bright shade and indoors in a sunny window for the winter where they continue to grow non-stop.


 Roscoea-beesiana-bulb

ROSCOEA
Plant 30cm. (12") deep and mark the spot because they may not show until late June. Grow them in a half - sun situation. They are hardy to zone 4.

SAUROMATUM
These large bulbs should be planted shallowly with 1-2cm (approx 1")of soil over the top. They will bloom in a few weeks and the spent flowers should be removed. The flowers are followed by lovely palmate foliage. Grow it in a lightly shaded spot, feeding with a fertilizer with even numbers or higher last 2 numbers. Store dry indoors for the winter in a cool, dark place.


 Sprekelia-formosana-bulbs

SPREKELIA
Plant immediately in a pot only slightly wider than the bulbs. About 1" of space should do. These flower best when pot bound. Use our soil recipe (above) planting the bulb 4" or less deep. The "neck" (the narrow part of the bulb at the base of the leaves) should be above the soil. Water sparingly until the leaves start to grow.

TACCA
(Bat Flower) Tacca are tender, tropical plants that must be grown in a pot, spending the summer outdoors and winter inside. They require a sharply draining soil. Orchid soil or potting soil with 50% perlite added are ideal. You'll need an 8 - 10" pot (they can grow fast). Fill the pot with your soil mix then poke a hole with your finger in the middle. Insert your Tacca root in the hole deep enough to just cover the top. Water well and place in a warm 30C (85F) location. Keep the soil barely moist until you see foliage. Tacca like a humid environment and bright shade. Place your pot in a dish with gravel and water to keep the air humid.


 Tacca-chantrei-macrantha_root

You can move your Tacca to a shady spot outside once the night temperatures are above 18c (65F). Tacca are heavy feeders, so feed your plant every other week with a balanced fertilizer (equal numbers like 10-10-10). Stop fertilizing in September and gradually reduce watering.

They bloom in late summer/early fall so you'll need to move it back indoors once the nights get below 13c (55F). Your Tacca may not flower in its first season. Stop all watering in late October and let your plant go dry. Remove the yellowed foliage and store it in a warm, dark, dry place; a laundry room or pantry would be perfect. Do not water the plant, but do not allow it to become bone dry. A light spritz of water once a month should be enough.

Restart your plant next spring.

 Sprekelia-formosana-bulbs

TUBEROSE
(Polianthes tuberosa) These Mexican natives are related to Agave. They have spiky leaves at their base and tall, narrow flower stems. By nature they bloom in late summer, so it’s a good idea to give them a head start indoors. They are best grown in pots. Bring them indoors before fall frosts and keep them in a sunny window through the winter. Water occasionally, but keep them on the dry side.

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Canada
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