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BONNIE'S GARDEN--The Bulbs I'm Taking Home...

Yes, I have a yard full of plants—particularly bulbs.  But every year new bulbs come in and I always see a new variety or two for which I need to make space.  And, of course, I’ve got all those containers on my deck that I’m yanking my annual flowers out of so I can stuff them full of bulbs to start next spring off with a bang.

I always go for is fragrance.  First on my list is a little rockgarden daffodil called Pipit. Pipit has sweet yellow flowers with a white cup, 2 to 4 per stem.  It’s a jonquil-type and all jonquils tend to be very fragrant.  I’m also adding another jonquil called Quail.  This one is a solid sunny yellow.  I’ve already got some of both of these, but since I wind up cutting so many to bring inside, definitely need to add more.

Another group of daffs known for fragrance are the “Tazettas.”  The Tazetta family also includes our familiar paperwhites but there are winter-hardy varieties as well.  They are all multi-flowering and intensely scented.  This year I'm adding an heirloom variety called Avalanche.. It’s pure white with a bright yellow cup and has up to 15 to 20 quarter-sized flowers per stem.  

After I tuck in the daffs at six inches deep, I’m going to plant blue grape hyacinths (which only go three to four inches deep) on top.  I love the way the blue contrasts with the warm colors of the daffodils.  And muscari have so many blues to choose from—the sky blue Armeniacum, the two-toned blue of Latifolium, the silvery-blue of Valerie Finnis, the white-tipped blue flowers of Dark Eyes.  This year, I’m planting a variety called Blue Spike.  It’s a large, fluffy rich blue—and all muscari have a delicate almost fruity scent (there’s that fragrance factor again…)

I always take home lots of tulips for the pots on the deck.  In spring I want colors that shout so I usually go with vivid colors. After the frigid cold of last winter and the fear that we’ll have another one just like it, come spring I have a feeling I’m going to be in the mood for a rainbow.  And it’s always easy to find room for tulips in my pots.  I just plant them 10 inches deep (that keeps them out of reach of the squirrels), cover them over, tuck some daffs in at the six inch depth, then finish with crocus or muscari and pansies on top of the whole thing.  Love those layers.

And I’ll tuck in some hyacinths in the pot by the mailbox—love that fragrance.

Because my shady patches keep getting bigger, I’m taking home a few bulbs to help brighten them.  Spanish Bluebells, sometimes called Wood Hyacinths, are ten inch tall sweethearts in white, blue, or pink that tolerate shade beautifully.  I’m adding more to my shady front flower bed.  AndI'm tucking a few more Snowdrops right in my shady lawn. They’ll bloom and die back before I ever have to mow the lawn the first time.

I always find another spot for my favorite bulb—Spring Starflower (Ipheion Uniflora).  It has beautiful starry flowers in lavender or shades of blue blooms in April—and lasts over a month.  It’s sturdy, durable, pest-resistant and fragrant to boot.  I already have drifts on the rocky slope behind my house.  I’ll make room to tuck more in.

Whichever bulbs I plant, I know I’ll love them because nothing says SPRING quite like a bulb.
Posted: 10/27/2014 by Bonnie Pega | with 0 comment(s)
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