As leaves start to change color, many gardeners grab their trowels and start planting spring blooming bulbs. Depending on your hardiness zone, most spring blooming bulbs are best planted sometime in October. Conversely, late summer is ideal for installing fall blooming bulbs like Sternbergia, autumn blooming Crocus, Colchicum and Lycoris. These bulbs are typically harvested from fields in midsummer and then shipped for immediate planting. They may initially ‘resent’ the move, delaying bloom for a year or so, but eventually their sassy flowers will brighten the fall landscape (assuming they were set in the correct light and soil conditions). Photo right: Lycoris
I love planting these in groundcovers like creeping sedum, creeping thyme, vinca, Leptinella and creeping yellow jenny. When planting these gems, be sure to add some Bulb-tone to the planting hole. It contains bone meal and other natural organics to jump-start growth. Espoma’s Bulb-tone feeds slowly, safely, and provides a long lasting nutrient reservoir for superior results. My friends at Brent and Becky’s Bulbs offer all of the bulbs I mentioned plus many others that are best planted in the fall.