Caladiums?

Hobart, IN

My bulbs are now resting in vermiculite for the winter. Didn't have too much rot so maybe lost 1 or 2 at most. But gosh! They sure got a lot smaller in one season. Makes me wonder how the bulb growers develop such big tubers to begin with. Tried looking briefly online but couldn't find anything or maybe phrased my search incorrectly. Do they fertilize the heck out of them?

Hobart, IN

Had a chance to read up on how to increase the size of the Caladium bulbs. Looks like I should have added some bulb fertilizer although I also read that it's a little harder to get Caladiums to increase in size compared to other bulbs. Too late for this season but I'll have to remember next year to add fertilizer.

brainerd, MN(Zone 4a)

I know I pulled mine out...but for the life of me I can't remember where I put them right now...good grief! :)

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

I still have some Pink Gems in my front flower bed... just havent had the time to pull them. bet they are just about toast by now.

Hobart, IN

We still haven't had a freeze yet but it looks like we'll get one later this week. Did anyone add fertilizer to their bulbs when they were planted back in the spring? I'm interested if the fertilizer had any effect on the size of the bulbs.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

nope -- not me.

and we've had light frosts.. these are in the front bed, so I dont think any frost has hit them yet... only plants not protected by the house.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Pleased to report that I placed my order with Bill late in October and my bulbs arrived today. I start them indoors, which is why they came so early. They don't go outdoors till May, based on weather temps.

Bill carefully watched the weather forecast so that the bulbs would be safe in shipment. They were well packed, and the shipment contained extra bulbs.

I can't wait to get them into pots for this weekend.

brainerd, MN(Zone 4a)

I picked some up at Menards this weekend...along with a few cana and some cala lilies for my urns.

Hobart, IN

Your posts have reminded me to dig out the Caladiums I stored last fall. The bulbs from Bill greatly diminished in size over the growing season last year so I'll have to see what's survived the storage and what's going to be of a size worth growing.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

I too will have to get out the bag and see what's in there.

Hobart, IN

And I have to remember to add fertilizer to them this time!

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

do you recall what type? 5/5/5 or 15/15/15 ??

brainerd, MN(Zone 4a)

I lost mine from last year...like I dont know where they are lost them, not they died lost them. So I bought more :)

Hobart, IN

I seem to remember the article mentioning "bulb fertilizer". I was wondering if they meant the traditional bone meal used for bulbs but I kinda doubt it. Have never used bulb fertilizer so will have to look into that. I seem to recollect seeing bags of the stuff at garden centers though.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

I used the fertilizer Bill sells. This year I forgot so I'll use Osmocote 11-11-11 with our own compost on top.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

thanks pirl.

Hobart, IN

Thanks for the info, Pirl. Sounds like a balanced fertilizer is in order.

Hobart, IN

Dug out my poor pathetic Caladium bulbs. Some of them shriveled to almost nothing during storage. Rather than plant up individual pots of what I hope are viable, I put them all in an old Tupperware cake saver top, sitting on the vermiculite they were stored in but covered with some really good potting soil. I'll see which ones actually sprout before potting them up or planting them out.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Cindy, they have a better shot if you stored them in a warm area. If you pot them up together and it is warm enough, they'll give you a nice display. If you don't keep them above 60 degrees, don't be surprised if they rot.

Hobart, IN

They were definitely kept warm all winter, stored in my heated, crowded garage rather than the cooler greenhouse. Dunno - maybe they're more dessicated than rotted.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

For all the times I've tried to hold them over winter, they never did well. I hope that's of some consolation to you. Now I don't even spend the time digging, cleaning and storing. Dahlias are enough work.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Mine were in pots all winter and we kept them watered. They have gone through their dormancy and are already growing beautifully indoors. If it doesn't permanently warm up soon, there will be no place to walk in my office.

Pirl, my dad did a wonderful job storing dahlias from year to year. I can never quite do it right time-wise.

By the way, I have only killed half of the coleus plants.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

This has been my best winter for coleuses and I credit it to watering very seldom. All are in cool spots so that must have helped.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

I did the same, but probably should have watered a little more often. The twist and twirls did ok, but the fishnet stockings and a fern leaf have almost bitten the dust. I was negligent in ignoring them.

Without a doubt it's a lot to keep up with summer, fall, winter and spring. Also, I did better when I was single!

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

We had a discussion about Fishnet Stockings awhile back on the Coleus Forum. It seems that for many of us it is doomed from the start.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Thanks. Sort of glad to hear that.

Hobart, IN

I've been tempted by dahlias. Is there a tuber-type and a non-tuber type?
Have a Coleus that looks similar to 'Fishnet Stockings' but the stems are inky, the leaf is rounder and has more substance. And it gets big. It's pretty stocky as well. Don't have the name though.
I'm glad I didn't spend a lot of time potting up those Caladium yesterday. If a few sprout, I'll be happy.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Dahlias are tubers but you can grow them from seed. By the end of the season they will have tubers.

Hobart, IN

Ahhhh - thanks for the info. I knew there were tubers but also knew you could buy them in packs.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Even the ones sold in small pots end up developing full sized tubers by digging time.

Thumbnail by pirl
Hobart, IN

I'll have to give that a try. Have done cannas before but haven't attempted Dahlias or tuberous begonias. Don't know if my attempt at caladiums count for much experience.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Tuberous begonias are easy. Give them a try.

Hobart, IN

Definitely!

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

Has anyone seen a Co-Op for Bill's this year??

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

It took place back in January, sorry! Keep checking Classified Ads since he has posted offers in May and June in former years.

Edited to add: it wasn't a co-op but an ad with a special DG discount.

This message was edited Mar 29, 2012 10:25 AM

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

thanks Pirl... i was out of town and missed it. *sniff*

I guess I will make due with the ones I stored over the winter... hope they produce... but not holding out too much hope that they will be as nice as last year.

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

Sorry! There were several threads about Bill's caladiums at the time of the sale.

You can always go to his site and buy them directly.

http://www.caladiumbulbs4less.com/servlet/StoreFront

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

yea.. i know... was on there this morning.

I just need to take the time to find what i "dont need"
I dont have a lot of 'free' pots at home here, so i may have to wait til i get to Wisc in a few weeks to get the stored bulbs back in the soil.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

oh Pirl... i found one. 10% off. gonna go "window shopping".

(Arlene) Southold, NY(Zone 7a)

They're the most color and least care you can get for the money. I rely heavily on them so I don't have to face buying a lot of annuals that would need deadheading. They are SO easy to plant!

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