Friday, October 23, 2015
Best Bulbs for growing in containers
Are you a gardener that has limited space but would still love to be able to grow beautiful flowers? Growing bulbs in containers is a great way to continue gardening in small spaces such as apartments, condos or even smaller yards. You can also use these containers to grow any remaining bulbs you didn’t have room for in your garden or to give as a gift. Planting bulbs in containers is just as easy as planting them in the ground! Check out the selection we offer http://www.veseys.com/ca/en/store/fallbulbs
Selecting a large enough container that has holes to allow for good drainage is the key to success of this type of gardening. It is also recommended to supply a layer of rocks or crushed gravel in the bottom of the pot before adding soil. Be sure that you use good quality potting mix that provides good drainage and is not soil based.http://www.veseys.com/ca/en/store/tools/container/organicgrowing Using well-drained pots and soil will prevent bulbs from rotting and put on a spectacular display.
Use a pot that is at least 24” in diameter and has a depth of at least 8” if you are planning on leaving it out all winter. Flexible plastic pots are best to use in this case because when water in soil freezes, it expands and can easily break clay, ceramic or other types of rigid plastic pots.
Follow the same requirements for planting depths as you would if planted directly in the garden, maybe even a little deeper. Larger bulbs such as tulips will be planted deeper then small bulbs like crocus. You can group the same types in one container for best impact of color and growth or if using an extra large pot you can do a planting process called layering.
Begin by planting the large bulbs in soil in the bottom of the pot; cover with at least an inch to two inches of potting soil and then plant the smaller bulbs on top cover with proper amount of soil. Layering planting gives your container a stunning and full display of color that will last you for weeks. Water the bulbs lightly after they have been planted, check on them periodically throughout the season to be sure they aren’t too wet or too dry. Bulbs generally do not need to be watered during their chill time, however if soil appears dry you can lightly mist them from time to time until they are ready to grow.
All fall bulbs need a period of cold treatment. This is otherwise known as “Chill time”. If bulbs don’t receive the proper amount of chilling time, they may not bloom. These containers can be left outdoors all winter long if a large enough pot is used that would properly insulate the bulbs and hold enough soil. Adding extra protection such as wrapping with burlap, bubble wrap or other types of insulating material would be an added benefit. If you live in an area of the country where winter temperatures regularly fall below 32F(zones 2-5); you will need to protect your container from freezing. Chilling doesn’t only have to take place outdoors. http://www.veseys.com/ca/en/learn/guide/bulbinfo/otherbulbs
To stimulate the effect of winter as well as offering proper protection, place the container in a cool, dark and dry location such as a frost free unheated basement, cold room or garage. Chilling bulbs in a fridge is also possible however be mindful of keeping them away from certain types of fruit such as pears or apples that give off ethylene gas. This can cause the bud inside the bulbs to desist resulting in little or no growth.
When taken out of cold storage and set into warmer temperatures, place in a sunny location. This stage is called “Forcing to Bloom”. A regular watering regime will be needed at this time, taking care not to over water. You will be amazed at how quick they will grow! Generally gardeners will time these containers to force a bloom in early spring giving all a sign of what’s to come!
Once these bulbs have finished blooming and had time for the stalks to brown, they can be removed from the container and stored in a cool, dark and dry location until the fall.
Stay tuned because in weeks to come I will post a picture of the end result and to learn more about growing bulbs visit our website www.veseys.com
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