When it comes to bulbs many think of daffodils, freesia, and ranunculus but there is so much more to bulbs than the winter flowering varieties. To get reoccurring colour in your garden, bulbs are a very underrated plant. They are easy to plant, require little fuss, and will return each year with brilliant colours. There are many types of bulbs, be it a warm region or a cool one, and some you will not even think as being bulbs. For example, Zephyranthes are commonly called Rain Lily, they are lovely additions to the garden, perfect for edging or as a filler, and flower after rain.
Dahlias are stunning, with showy flowers and some varieties of dahlias can reach 1.5m. Plant in spring for a magnificent show in late summer and autumn. They make amazing cut flowers, though they have a short vase life. Hippeastrum come in a range of colours, classic dark red to rose pink, white or even lemon or lime, as well as some with striped flowers. The clumps come back each year getting bigger masses, which can be split and moved around the garden when they die down.
The vivid blues of Muscari or Scilla Bluebells are a brilliant foil to orange-coloured flowers such as Kniphofia Red Hot Pokers, as they are on the opposite end of the colour wheel and draw the eye as they fight for colour dominance. Alliums have an amazing flower that makes them such a draw card in the garden. When they start at the end of spring you never want them to stop. Related to the allium, Tulbughia violacea is known for having edible flowers and leaves. This plant is incredibly hardy, and flowers prolifically from spring through to autumn.
Brodiaea ‘Queen Fabiola’ is a bulb that is highly under used, survives harsh conditions, and goes dormant during the hotter months. They can have over twenty dainty flowers on each plant and are exquisite as a long-lasting cut flower. Sprinkled through the garden they often give a surprise of blooms, whilst being a true survivor.
Plant all bulbs in a friable soil with plenty of organic matter such as Searles Mushroom Compost or Premium Compost Mix blended thoroughly through the soil. For better flowering use Searles 5 in 1 Pellets every few months and water them with SeaMax Fish and Kelp, which the entire garden will enjoy. Some clever gardeners use bulbs which flower in different seasons as fillers in their garden. The dash of colour can change season by season, with some of these varieties taking over from the daffodils, freesias, and ranunculus for varying colour and textures. In pots, plant in Searles Platinum Potting Mix as seen in the video by Gardenettes on the Searles website.
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