Spring Color Starts in the Fall


Photo by Unsplash/Irina Iriser

When spring finally breaks and all the spring flowers pop up, it is such a welcome sign after a long winter. However, all of that color takes a little planning the fall before.

September through mid-October is the optimum time to plant spring-flowering bulbs, other perennials that bloom in the spring and to consider storage for summer planted bulbs.

It’s probably best to get the old out of the way first. By digging bulbs that bloom in the summer before you plant spring blooming bulbs, you ensure that you don’t forget to dig them since out of sight is out of mind. It also makes room to plant other bulbs that need to go in during fall.

Summer bulbs such as gladiolas, tuberous begonias, cannas and dahlias are too tender to bear frost so they need to be dug and stored during winter. Once frost has killed the foliage, dig the bulbs, shake off loose dirt and let them dry a couple days, preferably in the sun. Then store in peat moss or just loose in boxes, not bags since bags attract moisture. Place in a dark storage area that is around 45*F.

If your plants were in pots, cut the foliage off and place the pots in a cool but non-freezing location. Leave until spring and do not water them.

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