We offer the following information to help you enjoy great results with spring-planted flower bulbs.
BLOOM TIMES FOR SUMMER BULBS
Every yard and garden can benefit from the beauty of spring-planted bulbs. Wonderful on their own, they are also good companions for annuals, perennials, shrubs, and groundcovers. Many of them grow well in containers, too.
Each type of flower bulb blooms on a different schedule. Asiatic lilies, for example, flower in early summer, while pineapple lilies bloom in late summer. Dahlias start blooming in midsummer and continue right through the fall.
When selecting spring-planted bulbs, it's helpful to know when they will bloom. This way, you can plan for a succession of colorful flowers all season long.
KNOW YOUR HARDINESS ZONE
How do you know which plants will be winter hardy in your area? The USDA has divided the US into climate zones based on average minimum winter temperatures. These climate zones range from zone 12 (tropical) to zone 2 (Arctic). To find your hardiness zone, click HERE.
All plants and bulbs are given a hardiness rating that lets you know how much winter cold they will tolerate. Many summer-blooming bulbs, such as caladiums, canna lilies, and elephant ears, are tropical plants that can't survive cold winters.
Gardeners in northern areas can still enjoy growing these tender bulbs during the summer months. Simply treat them as annuals (buying new bulbs each spring), or bring the bulbs indoors before freezing temperatures arrive in the fall.
WHEN TO PLANT SUMMER BULBS
Summer bulbs should be planted in mid to late spring after all danger of frost has passed. Night time temperatures should be averaging at least 60°F, and soil temperatures should be 65 to 70°F. Bulbs such as caladiums and elephant ears will not grow in cool soil, so it's best to wait an extra two weeks before planting them.
Gardeners in southern areas (dark purple) should plant January-March
Gardeners in central areas (medium purple) should plant March-May
Gardeners in northern areas (light purple) should plant April-June
PART SUN areas get 4-6 hours of sunlight per day.
SHADE areas receive less than 4 hours of sunlight per day.