|Valentine combo includes Cyclamen, Alocasia, Begonia, Plectranthus, a stem of |
Hippeastrum 'Lime Flare' in a vase, and a little Valentine dog.
|The same Cyclamen on Dec. 28, 2015|
I dove into the exotic bulb world and purchased some unusual bulbs that promised winter to early spring blooms.
I also bought two Cyclamen plants in full bloom in mid-December, and guess what? They're still in bloom! Usually by this time, they've not only gotten tired of pumping out blossoms, they apparently just plain got tired of being alive. The lights go a long way toward keeping them alive and growing.
About a month before I brought home the Cyclamen (mid-November), I planted six bulbs of Scilla madierensis. I was so excited about them I ordered three each from Longfield Gardens and Easy to Grow Bulbs. Before you decide to try these, you need to know they've sold out and will hopefully be available again in the late summer/early fall.
|Dec. 28, 2015|
|By Jan. 6, I had two flowering stems.|
They seemed to stage themselves, the first flower showing up slowly right around New Year's, and the stem on the last bulb just beginning to unfurl and show its flowers.
I might have had earlier flowers, but for a bag of wet potting soil that I purchased in September. When it came time to plant the Scilla bulbs, I opened it up and found it was wringing wet. I scooped out a large potful and spread it out on a flat and put it on a heat mat for two days and it still didn't dry. I put it back in the bag and tried to return it to the garden center, but all the bags were wet there, too.
LESSON LEARNED: don't buy wet potting soil, even if it's still very warm out. I won't be buying soil from this particular garden center. I will only buy potting soil if the bag is light and dry. I'll add my own moisture, thank you.
|Unfurled to maximum size on Jan. 17, this |
Scilla makes a good companion to