I am new to ALLIUMS

(Zone 4b)

I just returned from a tour of residential gardens and I am always pleased if I learn one thing that I can apply to my own garden. Today was ALLIUMS. I don't know much about them but they are clearly a worthwhile addition to a spring early summer garden. The large ones I saw were striking and they don't appear to take up much room ('width wise').

Can you fill me in on more details?

- bulb...planted in the fall?

- do they require full sun?

- do squirrels or deer eat them?

- can you recommend a variety?

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Not an authority, but I've been growing alliums for a few years. It's one of those "set it and forget it" types of bulbs.

The bulbs are planted in the fall. As far as I know, they need full sun. I don't think squirrels or deer eat them, as we have deer, squirrels and other critters, and don't seem to lose many.

I generally buy large bulbs, either Globemaster or Gladiator. The larger the bulb, the more expensive it is. Very early on, end of March beginning of April, you will see a pretty little rosette which eventually looks like the first photo. Once it starts to send its spike, the leaves shown in the first photo tend to become very dry at the ends and fairly unattractive, but not too noticeable. They flowers on the spike start to open and are fully open as in the third photo in a round ball. Each flowerhead contains hundreds of small flowers and last a couple of weeks. After a while, each individual bloom starts to die off, and as the heads starts to go to seed as in the fourth photo, still quite attractive. Most of our alliums are lavender or dark purple, but the last photo is of a white allium, abut a week before it is fully open.

These came out in full in May (for us in the northeast), and the heads have gone to seed, but I usually cut them down if they become too heavy and start to bend or otherwise look bad.

In the meantime, the small "drumstick" alliums have been growing slowly, and their heads are much smaller. The spike is much less substantial and may need support. The heads have not opened yet, are too small and still covered with the thin, papery covering.

Everything purple or lavender came up for me, but I know we planted 3 white bulbs (albas), but were only graced with one. They were wonderful accent plants, tall and stately, as other plants in that bed were developing and growing taller.

I buy the bulbs at Costco, where all the packages are the same size and price. The more expensive the bulb, the fewer the number of bulbs in the package. I think the Gladiators have 3 bulbs.

If you grown other plants from bulbs, you know that large bulbs need to be planted deeper, at least 4-6 inches. We have them in a bed by the front walk that is loaded with all kinds of bulbs, including tulips and muscaris. The large alliums, tulips and lilies are planted deepest with the smaller, earlier bulbs on top. By the time the alliums and lilies are sprouting, the smaller plants have already bloomed and died down. We amend the soil and add fertilizer as well.

The large alliums tend to bloom around the same time as the tall bearded irises, which are also in that bed as well as peonies. A small amount of eye candy for spring walkers.

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(Zone 4b)

cathy, thank you so much for the detailed reply...lots of good information for me.

Chevy Chase, MD(Zone 7a)

I have a follow-up question. I am thinking of putting a lot of Allium christophii (http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/gardens-gardening/your-garden/plant-finder/plant-details/kc/d499/allium-christophii.aspx) in a dry rocky hardpan front hill -- I gather they like it dry and sunny, so this might work. The hill is clay, but I can add some sand and compost to break it up -- and they are pretty inexpensive, so if they don't thrive, so be it. I can get them from http://www.touchofnature.com/fallcatalog/alliums.htm, 10 bulbs for $11; 50 bulbs for $46 (plus shipping).

My question: Does the foliage last all season, and if not, what do you plant to fill in the gaps? Something low? Something tall? Would Coreopsis do? I don't want to put in annuals in the area I am contemplating -- I am hoping to plant it and then do relatively little maintenance from year to year -- so I'd like perennials.

Would another allium be a better match for my hill? Other suggestions? I don't want daffodils; I have plenty of them elsewhere. Thanks!

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Anything will fill in nicely. Allium foliage does not last. It does not even last till the flowers bloom. However, the foliage is fairly close to the ground. By the time the spring stuff is done, there is a lot more coming. In that same bed are lilies from previous years and bee balm, which needs to be kept under control or it will take over. I always add dahlias as they bloom until the first frost. I usually add some low stuff at the front of the bed or fill in with large pots with coleus, nasturtium. Celosia starts small and becomes full; it's very brightly colored and looks like tiny flames. In the back of that bed we have tomatoes and cucumbers with very decorative trellises and a couple of very large pots with a tomato plant and draping like trailing coleus and petunias. There are amsonia and baptisia bushes as well, but I cut them back.

I do a lot of container gardening so that the pots can be moved around to less sun if it gets too hot. I have a back problem, so it is easier for me to plant bulbs in containers while sitting on steps rather than leaning over. Carrying the pots is another story.... I like to have a focal point and an eye-catcher. It distracts from the other junk in the yard. You could probably put alliums in large pots if you like.

Our gardens are always in a state of flux. We were fortunate to have dahlias and calla lilies that survived the mild winter. Don't think we'll be that lucky again. The problem with perennials is that the prettier they are, the shorter their bloom time. While we add some annuals on the borders, everything else is perennial: lilies, irises (different varieties bloom at different times). The only perennials that don't require much attention are brunnera, possibly some hostas, sidalcea, some types of clematis echinacea (purple coneflower) and platycodon (balloon flower). Heucheras are also easy, but everything needs attention and cries out for it. Many need thinning out or trimming. The best thing suggestion I got from a DG subscriber was to add sedum, and that has turned out to be wonderful.

Marcia

Chevy Chase, MD(Zone 7a)

Thanks -- it is helpful to know that the foliage doesn't last. It sounds as if I can figure out which of the perennials I have will leaf out (and bloom) the latest, and I'll put the allium under those.

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Rogue, Rogue, Rogue! And Happ, Happ, Happ!

You're gonna love allium christophii. I've been growing them for at least 12 years. Goes with everything! Roses, peonies grasses perennials. And after they dry they last for months.

And note, from the last pic. They seem expensive, but they start multiplying rapidly in a couple of years. I have dug up at least 30 to share with friends, and please note that they are very easy to dig up, even in bud or bloom. I once mailed a half dozen to a DGer in bud, who planted them, and they bloomed.



This message was edited Jul 15, 2012 2:08 PM

Thumbnail by DonnaMack Thumbnail by DonnaMack Thumbnail by DonnaMack Thumbnail by DonnaMack Thumbnail by DonnaMack
Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

They are full sun, generally, but I have found huge christophiis ones that seeded into shade and produced enormous flowers. No pests are interested in them. Some of them get absolutely enormous.

On the other end of the spectrum is allium oreophyllum. I have never seen them in anyone else's garden. They are small charmers, and incredibly cheap. They too go with everything, and after about three years, start seeding, but are easy to move, and oh, so delightful.

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Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Allium sphaerocephalon is a great foil to other plants. I personally don't like to grow them in isolation, unless of course you have more imagination than I do. But I was given some and started using them. They are exceedingly cheap, by the way/

With Silk Road and baptisia.

With Anastasia and grasses.

Another allium I love is atropurpureum, which is a beautiful dark burgundy, but it doesn't persist from year to year in my yard, and it's expensive, so it is one I would not recommend.

This message was edited Jul 15, 2012 2:38 PM

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(Zone 4b)

Thanks Donna for the info and encouragement. I have something to look forward to planting this fall.

Chevy Chase, MD(Zone 7a)

Me too!

(Zone 4b)

In terms of height I need some that are around 18" to 2 feet tall and then some that are taller. As well it would be nice to have some early flowering ones (early May) as well as some later openers (late May into early June). (If they all aren't open by early June there might be too much shade from the surrounding leafing trees)

Do different varieties of alliums open at different times in the spring with all else being equal?

I often order my plants from here:

http://www.gardenimport.com/spblvl2.php?lvl=Allium

What do you think of these selections?

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Rouge,

They actually open at quite different times. When I was buying them, I wanted the longest season possible.

Allium oreophyllum blooms in late May. I use it to accompany my peony bloom time.

Allium caeruleum opens in mid-June, with Rosepoint Lace. The color is gorgeous, but it is somewhat insubstantial. You need a lot to make an impact, but it is very inexpensive. As you can see, it overlaps allium christophii, but christophii lasts much longer in bloom and the seedheads last for months. Please see the pic.

Allium christophii starts blooming in late May, but new ones keep opening for weeks, sometimes until the end of June.

Drumstick allium (sphaerocephalon) starts blooming in mid-July. It blooms for weeks because all of them don't bloom at once. And if you dig them up you will see that they reproduce like mad.

There is one I didn't mention because it is very difficult to find: allium ramosum (see pic). I found it years ago. It blooms in September, and for weeks. But it does seed like mad, so you have to watch it. But it is amazing - and almost impossible to transplant, unlike other alliums. I have purchased the seeds.

I'm going to send this and have a look at your site.

One more I should mention, because it was wonderful but the grass cutters kept chopping it: allium karataviense. Gorgeous foliage.

The ones that did not work for me were triquetrum (I fell in love with it in San Francisco, and it likes damp shade, but that's OK - it's invasive there) and allium roseum, which faded away after the first season and never returned.

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Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

To be honest, I think it is a little limited.

Have a look at Scheepers. You have to place a $35 order, but look at these selections and prices. I have ordered from them many times, and they are excellent!

Here is their allium page:

http://www.johnscheepers.com/catview.cgi?_fn=Product&_category=Allium

And Brent and Becky's has two pages of alliums bulbs. Here is the link to the first. And there is no minimum order. As you know, this company is superb:

https://store.brentandbeckysbulbs.com/spring/search/search.php?section=keyword&criteria=allium&page=1

Please have a look.

Van Engelen is Scheepers wholesale arm. Phenomenal prices, but you need a %40 order (I've done it!!)

Changed to reflect that I made an important typo. The minimum Van Engelen order is $50.




This message was edited Jul 16, 2012 10:03 AM

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Thanks, Donna. You always share the best in experiences!

Marcia

(Zone 4b)

Quote from DonnaMack :
To be honest, I think it is a little limited.


Donna, for an allium newbie 14 choices would seem to be more than enough!

The good thing about this place is that although it is mail order I live close enough to be able to pick up my purchases. As well being in Canada it would be more expensive and possibly not allowed to ship plant material across the border....not sure how that applies to bulbs.

Chevy Chase, MD(Zone 7a)

There is also http://www.touchofnature.com/fallcatalog/alliums.htm

But Brent and Becky are cheaper on the Christophii; Scheepers doesn't carry it.

On the Drumstick allium (sphaerocephalon), Scheepers is the cheapest (unless you can handle the Van Engelen minimum order) -- $15.30 for 100; B&B is $23; Touch of Nature is $28. Garden Import is $16.50. I didn't compare shipping.

The minimum Van Engelen order is now $50 -- see http://www.vanengelen.com/shippingterms.html They only charge $14.50 for 100 Drumstick allium (sphaerocephalon).

This message was edited Jul 16, 2012 10:22 AM

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Marcia, thank you. That's very sweet.

Rouge, you won't be a newbie long!

Happ,

Thank you for pointing out my dumb typo. Van Engelen is indeed $50, and that hasn't changed. Occasionally, relative expensive bulbs are cheapest there.

Scheepers does carry christophii, but they call it by another name. At 10 for $8.75, theirs is a good price, since these babies are usually at least $1.00 each:

http://www.johnscheepers.com/catview.cgi?_fn=Item&_recordnum=1112&_category=Allium

Here is the entry:

Allium albopilosum
Syn: A. christophii, the Star of Persia. Circa 1901, huge, 10" globes of amethyst-violet florets with silver highlights and green eyes.

Don't ask me why. Weird. Probably costs them business.

Chevy Chase, MD(Zone 7a)

Thanks so much for pointing that out -- I just did a quick check under the "c"s. Maybe albopilosum is the correct name, and so they are ahead of the times. (But they should have an entry under christophii with a note to "see" albopilosum so we don't miss it ....)

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Rouge, when I went back and read your post about bloom times, I felt compelled to mention that bloom times are very general and not the same when we've had a mild winter. It is my biggest challenge to have something in bloom at all times. The year I decided not to plant dahlias it became very hot, everything bolted, and by September there was nothing left.

Donna, it is so easy to spend $50! I will never have enough alliums.

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

You are absolutely right and I should have added that those bloom times are historical. I have records and pictures going back many years, so I simply pulled up all the pictures I have categorized under allium christophii, for example, and noted the bloom times over the previous 6 years, but excluding this year. Everything was earlier this year. And of course this is in zone 5a.

I must confess that spending $50 was never a problem for me, either. I would go nuts on double tulips, multiflowering tulips, lily flowering and species. And then there were the alliums - oh gosh, don't get me started.

Cheaper than booze or cigarettes!

This message was edited Jul 16, 2012 6:06 PM

This message was edited Sep 27, 2012 7:20 AM

Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

Mine never came up this year. are they bi-annual?

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

The same thing happened to me, and I purchased more alliums, only to find that the original ones seeded like mad and I ended up with a ton of them - the original ones, the new ones, and the seeds from both. This is particularly true of allium oreophyllum and allium christophii. I gave some christophii to a friend who said they did not return. So I brought some more. The next year, ALL of them bloomed. I put in 100 oreophyllum which seemed to disappear. The following year they were everywhere!

That's how I ended up getting this effect.

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Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

I was so disappointed this spring when I did not see the ones from last year and the new larger ones I planted. I hope I see them next year.

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

I was too, and I thought that somehow they were all gone. I don't know why this happens. I do know that roseum, tiquetrum and atropupureum did not work for me at all.

Which alliums did you plant?

Williamstown, NJ(Zone 6b)

I have no idea what the name was. I just know that it grew a tall stalk with a nice round purple ball of flower. They came from a Lowes or HD. The first ones came up nice, they were the shorter ones. then I thought oh wow I like them I will plant the bigger ones. But nothing came up.

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

If you know where they were, dig and see if they are there.

And hey! We covered this topic before, in 2009. There is a really good thread. I'm going back to read it myself:

http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1011503/#b

And I may be wrong but it is my perception that the really tall, really expensive hybridized ones - I don't know if I am describing them properly as hybridized but the ones with really long stems like Globemaster - are much less likely to come back than christophii, drumstick, oreophyllum or caeruleum (aka azureum). I do know that I put in atropupureum, which I just loved, every year for three years, and it just wasn't coming back so I gave up. My impression is that all those really big ones were created, not found.

I remember that I would see the Globemaster/Gladiators types in neighbors yards for one year, and that was it. I wonder if they don't come true to seed.

What do you think?

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

OK, I found a really good fact sheet from Maryland Extension about - TA DA! - alliums.

http://extension.umd.edu/publications/PDFs/FS767.pdf

Here is the good stuff:

Caeruleum/azureum, christophii, karataviense and drumstick are species. By the way, those of you who grow azureum, I'll bet that you have seen, as I have a bulblet in the actual flower.

Globemaster and Mars are hybrids. Globemaster sounds like the one you grew. I wonder if the fact that it is a hybrid means that, if you lose the bulb, you won't get true ones from the seeds.

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Donna, with your enthusiasm I ordered a variety from American Meadows, and I, too, am enthusiastic. I've ordered Schubertii, True Blue, Fireworks Mix and Pinball Wizard. I'm guessing that True Blue is a smaller bulb.

As you probably know from old posts, I purchase most of my bulbs at Costco, and it is necessary to get in there early to get the best pick. I have always had good (excellent) luck with the white bags which usually sell for something like 12.49. They also have larger bags that sell for about $19, and they usually carry an assortment, which is what I purchased last year. They are packaged by a different company, and I won't purchase them again. I got one alba (instead of 3 that I planted), and no schubertii came up at all. I did not go to Scheepers because I cannot plant that many bulbs on the less expensive ones. I always plant my alliums in the same bed, so to be fair, I probably should try some in another bed, but my aim is curb appeal and interest.

I know you've had a lot of experience moving plants, especially peonies, and I plan to do a lot of digging and sharing with my nephew in his new home. Do you know long can I keep bare root peonies out of soil? That bed is invaded with Houttuynia, and I am disgusted and frustrated trying to keep up with it. I have to wash the roots of anything I pull from that bed to avoid contamination.

As always, I am appreciative of your sharing your knowledge, which is vast!

Marcia

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Marcia,

You are sweet.

I actually kept a peony root in the trunk of my car for three days. It will possibly slow down the bloom process, and there may be fewer or smaller flowers the next year but it will come back. What I did do with most of them was put them in pots. Nothing elaborate. You can just shovel some soil into a pail and put them in there. I would protect them from heat and try to keep them moist, but remember that they are shipped bareroot, which requires that they be out of the soil for several days. So I would guess, and it's just a guess, that two or three days would do not harm. Just don't let them dry out.

I think that alliums are just fabulous. I don't think you can have too many. Their bulbs take up very little room in the ground, and because they seed, they amuse you by popping up in unexpected places.

Enjoy!

(Zone 4b)

It is that time of year when spring blooming bulbs become available (actually things come too early at Costco...today there were artificial fully decorated Christmas trees on display!).

Anyways their prices for bagged bulbs are very good. For example their bag of 3 Allium "Globemaster" is about half the price I have seen them for sale elsewhere.

I was on the hunt only for Alliums. And so I visited 4 Costco's in the past week and today I got what I wanted...I bought 7 bags of the "Globemaster" (7 x 3 bulbs each) + 1 bag of "Purple Sendation" and "Mount Everest".

Bring on the fall...I'm ready

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

I was at Costco on Sunday, but they had mostly tulips (lots of beauties) and narcissus, hyacinth and a few others that I no longer plant. I wonder if we get them a bit later because we're in a warmer zone. I'll have to check tomorrow.

Marcia

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Yes, sadly I stopped planting hyacinths too. All of mine were doubles. I had one double dark blue that actually cam back and multiplied each year, hyacinth King Codro. I was able to just leave them in the ground. But I moved them in pots and they did not survive. I could kick myself.

It was astounding. I started with 3 and ended up with more than a dozen. But the other doubles - Ben Nevis, which is white and Chestnut Flower, which is pink, fade down to nothing.

I did end up ordering more of my favorite and reliable daffs: Mount Hood the division 1 trumpet from Brent and Becky (from whom I ordered lots of chionodoxa and some allium oreophyllum) and Mrs. Backhouse, from Old House Gardens. It's the first "pink" historically. Mount Hood starts out with a slightly yellow cup and then turns all white. I took some of each from my old house and then remembered that they bloom early enough to plant in partial shade under trees.

I also had the habit of digging up my tulips and drying them. So I have a lot of turkestanica, a species tulip. Each year I have five or six more.

And I have enough spce in sun for 10 White Trumphinators. I can't resist those guys.

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Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Donna, one year I planted lots of fragrant hyacinths, and there were quite a success. The next year they came up but never bloomed. Crocus, too. All in huge containers. I went back to Costco today, but did not see any allium. I did, however, buy a few fritillaria. I promise to plant them in containers early (on the sides) with lots of spinosad to protect them from lily beetles. This will be my last try with them. Will still keep one eye open for allium, but am glad I ordered online last month.

We still have quite a few tulips, and I figure what comes up comes up. The daffodils that were here when we moved in are still blooming. We have got lots of muscari, crocus and other blue/violet plants that come up in March. These early bulbs are harbingers of glorious spring and summer blooms. When reticulated iris come up through snow, we know we're on our way.

I am digging up Conca D'Or lilies and doing the container thing with spinosad. Five of the six bulbs grew to 5 feet with large, beautiful blooms. One grew to about 2 feet but failed for grow properly. Doing the same for many of the others. I am truly on the warpath with the red lily beetle. I hope they never get to the Midwest.

Due to the gentle winter weather, early spring and kooky warmer days with tropics-like downpours that last 15 minutes, we seem to be feeding our nicest foliage to the insects.

All in all, it has been a grand summer with lots of work. And so the cycle starts again.

Marcia

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

Marcia,

I'm curious. Are you saying that your crocuses are erratic in their return? I have put in lots of the old heirloom crocus vernus, like Pickwick, King of the Striped, Vanguard, and my favorite, Remembrance. I put these where there were no squirrels, and I was puzzled that they did not come back. The white ones (Joan of Arc) never repeated. Did this happen to your too?

I love iris reticulata. In the past years I have grown Harmony and J S Dilt. I am probably going to get them again when I have figured out my new yard.

But what I CANNOT resist is chionodoxa. I grew the white ones around a linden. When nothing else is blooming, the grasses have been cut down, and things look ratty, there they are. They tend to spread, and they get along very well with tree roots. And they are gorgeous! (Pics 1 and 2)

Then here is Pink Giant. Much larger. I grow it with my white and pink and white daffs, but they actually bloom sooner! So instead of getting them together I get them in succession, which is fine.

Then there is the brilliant blue of tiny sardensis, which I grow with lilium candidum and near my peonies.

They are all inexpensive to buy, and they all multiply.

When choosing between chionodoxa, I always remember what Brent and Becky noted. Scilla face down, while chionodoxa face up. It's like they are smiling at you.

And NOBODY has them. And they're cheap!

But

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Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

I'm not sure I know the difference between chionodoxa and scilla. Another part of my "blue" garden, along with centaurea and wood hyacinth.

When I couldn't ID them, I figured they were scilla as there are so many of them, some under the tree, others in the sunny bed. I guess the scilla are the blooms close to the ground. We also have star of bethlehem plants which are highly invasive, yet I like to look a their striped buds. When I pull them there are huge clusters of bulbs.

A couple of years ago, when I thought we might be moving, I planted huge tubs on my sunny back deck: tuliips, hyacinths with fritillaria and crocuses in the fall. The tulips were magnificent as were most of the others. I did not plant the frits right, and they came up but rotted. I planted one frit in the front garden, and the lily beetles destroyed it. The soil in the tubs was rich in compost. When the tulips died down, we planted tomatoes on top, and they did very well. Tomatoes on top of the hyacinths, and lilies mixed in deep below the crocus tub. What a success! The following year half the tulips came up and were very pretty and there were a few crocus. This year the tulips sprouted but no blooms. A few crocus, but none to mention. Since there were so many crocus bulbs, I recall planting some in the front bed, and I think there were some from the prior owner. They bloom reliably.

I try to keep track of where I plant things, but the front bed is no more than100 square feet and maybe less, and we make the most of it. Once the early spring bulbs are gone, I always like to have something in bloom: allium, clematis, peonies, lilies, irises (bearded and ensatas) and dahlias with a few annuals in containers. Lunaria and monarda find the way as do the baptisia and amsonia. All in bloom at different times. And I really cut back the baptisia and amsonia to keep from hogging space and sun. This year I put callas, caladiums and coleus in containers for a little curb appeal.

Someone posted on one of the threads a request for perennials so there would be minimal work involved. I don't think that exists. There is not a plant we have that does not require maintenance, even if it is to deadhead spent blooms and dead foliage. I do, however, love the "set it and forget it" of fall bulbs and hope we don't have underground critters.

On the plus side, I expect my American Meadows allium bulb order to come within the next month, and I expect to order A. Christopherii from Brent & Becky's, based on your photos and recommendation.

Elgin, IL(Zone 5a)

I ordered some crocuses to see if they do better here. I'm going to have to do some serious black pepper sprinkling, since there are lots of squirrels.

You are right - I can't think of a perennial that doesn't require some kind of maintenance. I did find that you can layer successfully and ease the work. I put chionodoxa on top of tulips. The chionodoxa bloom while I am waiting for the tulips, because my tulips are May blooming. Then I have allowed nicotiana alata and verbena bonariensis to seed throughout the tulip beds. They hide a lot of things, including peony foliage. This picture shows the bed in which I have about 75 daffodils. Verbena b does not have a deep taproot. You have to watch out for nicotiana alata, because it can grow a superficially deep, and easily removed but rather large rootball - when you pull it up it can dislodge other plants. I also find that it stays open if I put it on the north side of my house. At the end of the season, or the beginning of the next one, I pull them up, and then the chionodoxa and daffs beneath them come up the next year. This is an area lots of passersby see, and I want it to look nice, but I don't want to spend a lot of time. The arbor and the 2 Kentucky Coffee trees belong to my neighbor. I really like taking neighboring properties into consideration when I landscape.

This is in September. The effect lasts until very late in the season. This was a very foggy day. I love fog.

And here is a scilla - they face down.

http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.pacificbulbsociety.org/pbswiki/files/Scilla/Scilla_Spring_Beauty1_JL.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.pacificbulbsociety.org/pbswiki/index.php/Scilla&h=465&w=620&sz=60&tbnid=f64e9bVL4aA0sM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=120&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dscilla%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3Du&zoom=1&q=scilla&usg=__IfzQ0LJohIsH3Y06LKzf9etdUws=&docid=J9gT_SwygmibfM&sa=X&ei=psEvUKuGA6rLyQGa5IGgBA&ved=0CFkQ9QEwAg&dur=270

This message was edited Aug 18, 2012 11:11 AM

Thumbnail by DonnaMack
Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Hmmm. I'm going to have to go back and look at early photos. I always get soo excited when I see early blooms. I like layering bulbs with the large lily bulbs and tulips deepest. The person who digs up my garden will be wondering for a long time about what grew there. Except for the sedum; that will be obvious. :)

Stamford, CT(Zone 6b)

Well, I guess I am set. The American Meadows order should be here soon, and I spent a good hour in Costco today, eyeing the bulbs that came in this week.

Each year their selections improve. Now the proud owner of 50 bulbs of Iris Reticulata Harmony. Beside Gladiator and Globemaster Allium bulbs, I brought home Purple Sensation, Mount Everest, Atropurpureum, Nigrum and one more that I left in the car, but it a large purple bulb. The bags of bulbs here in Connecticut sell for $11.49 (I think). Globemaster and Gladiator packages have only 3 or 4 bulbs per package, while there are 20 Purple Sensation and 10 Mt. Everest in one package. The Altopurpureum are packed with 15 bulbs together with 25 Nigrum. They also had Drumsticks, but this year the Drumstick Allium did not fare too well, probably due to the dry weather, but I expect them to come up again next year.

Sooooo, if you are a Costco shopper and like to plant spring bulbs in the fall, now would be a good time to start checking out the bulb department. First their beautiful tulips, narcissus, crocus and hyacinth came in followed by some fritillaria bulbs. Followed by ALLIUM! These are all quality bulbs with somewhat limited assortment.

And Donna, they had Scilla today, too.

(Zone 4b)

cathy, in my August 15th post I described going to multiple Costcos only in search of alliums. A couple of the stores were already sold out of this variety but visiting enough stores did net me all that I wanted. I look forward to putting them in the ground this fall.

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