Introduction to Perennials and Bulbs
Why are perennial plants so popular in the garden? For a gardener, this is an affirmation that he is a serious gardener, and he intends to have so many plants growing in his garden, that it will never look bare and empty. The word perennial is of course not going to refer just to perennials with which you make your hedges or fill in your beds, but also to trees and shrubs.
So this book is going to tell you all about herbaceous perennials which live more than two years and grow up every year without much trouble. So you can consider them to be the gardener’s best friend.
You can buy all these attractive herbaceous perennials to suit all pockets and all tastes. You do not have to spend lots of dollars to get attractive plants for your garden. They are going to give you flowers of all colors. They can also be arranged in gardens to keep up the supply of Bloom from say early spring – April until October or late autumn.
Propagation of Perennials
Perennials as the name suggests, are plants which grow for a number of years. A number of Herbs, trees and shrubs come in the perennials category. These can be propagated in a number of ways. You can either sow seeds. You can also grow them by Stem cuttings and root cuttings. Division is also another way in which you can grow them.
You can either sow the seed directly in the open, in a sheltered place or in a cold frame at the beginning of spring or in early summer. It is an advantage if the soil is on the light side. So if you have heavy land, try to dig in some sand to lighten it.
You can use shallow drills a quarter of an inch deep. These are taken out 6 inches apart. You can sow the seeds thinly in these drills. If the soil and the weather are dry, it is a good idea to water the bed well the afternoon before you intend to sow the seeds. Try to raise sturdy seedlings by sowing sufficiently thinly. This is going to eliminate the necessity of future thinning out of the plants.
After you have sown the seed, rake the ground over lightly. Make certain that you rake it in the same direction as the drill. This is going to prevent any chance of the seed being distributed elsewhere in the rows. This is also going to help cover the seeds with a thin layer of soil. If necessary, after sowing, you can water through a fine hose.
Planting must be done with the greatest of care. It is of vital importance that the plan should be put in at the correct depths which can usually be judged from the marks of the soil on the stems as they are received from the nursery.
The roots should be loosened beforehand and made pliant by being plunged into tepid water. For each plant, you need to dig a hole slightly larger than the span of its root system, when well spread out. That can only be estimated through experience.
If the earth is dry and there is little chance of a heavy frost, you can add a little bit of water directly into the hole so that the sides and bottom soil is moistened, before you plant. A thin covering of dry earth should then be scattered over this, and the plant should be placed in the center.
Tips for Perennials
Some of these plants may need special treatment, especially Scabious. This likes a good covering of lime put over it with your winter sets in. Other plants like Delphinium often like fine ashes – if available – put around them, towards the end of the autumn as a soil mulch. This keeps the soil warm. It also prevents the stem from rotting off. Also, the slugs are kept at bay. Well, traditional methods still do work in the 21st century.
Never allow your flowers to seed. The cutting off of the flower heads needs to be done regularly in the case of varieties that flower early. This means you are going to get a second crop of bloom.
Stake the taller varieties early enough, if you want to ensure straight stems. This sticking can be done by using a flexible stick. Place it firmly in the center or at the sides of the clump. This is going to keep the stems upright.
Pea sticks are often used for sticking purposes, especially in herbaceous borders. That is because they do not look unsightly. Also, the plants are going to grow all around them and cover them while still keeping straight.
Just imagine a spring without any bulbs flowering in the wilderness or in your garden. Thanks to the amazing variety of bulbs available to you easily. You do not have to spend lots of money to get an attractive display of flowers throughout the year, especially in plants which grow wild.
Bulbs for Your Garden
Bulbs which are grown outdoors can give you lots of pleasure since their development can be watched from start to finish. Their blooms appear at times when other flowers in your garden outside may be scarce. Bulbs are showy and beautiful and often delightfully fragrant.
Bulb Fiber – Tips
Bulb fiber can be mixed at home from Peat-sedge peat, if you can find it, – a little crushed charcoal, and even oyster shell. However, a number of nursery men are going to provide you with ready mixed fiber at reasonable prices. In some cases they may also give you a fiber mix with a little bit of fertilizer.
Soak the fiber before use, but never let it swim in water. So the fiber when squeezed, is going to expose just a little bit of moisture. When it does so, it is ready for planting. Half fill the container with fiber. Stand the bulbs in place close to each other, but they should not be actually touching.
Using the handle of a wooden spoon, pack more fiber around the bulbs and until the smaller ones are completely covered and only the necks of hyacinths and Narcissus are showing a bit above the surface.
This book has introduced you to perennials in the garden, and is also given you tips on how to plant bulbs. Gardening is a very fulfilling occupation, and is a very relaxing pastime. The best thing about gardening is that you see the visual results of your efforts in a couple of months. And when you have planted perennials, they are going to bloom in your garden for many years.
So herbaceous perennials as well as bulbs are going to be a thing of beauty and a joy forever in your garden for a long time.
Start enjoying this very healthy pastime right now by planting some bulbs in your garden and even if you do not have outdoor space, you can plant them indoors.
So learn what our forefathers learned, there is nothing so joyous as working with soil and watching things grow in the fresh air and sun.
Live Long and Prosper!