Hyacinths in Texas

ladysmith94(TX)October 27, 2010

How do hyacinths do here? I am in zone 7 or 8 depending which map you use. Just a bit north of Abilene. I have daffodils and may try crocus, but I love hyacinths, and I would hate to waste them, if they do not do well here.

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ibheri

Hi, I'm in Zone 9 and my Hyacinth has been doing well last 2 years. I refrigrate them about 4/6 weeks prior to putting them in the ground and once the bloom period is done and the stems die down I dig them up and save them for next year. I have not really left them in the ground, the lady from whom I bought them in a bulb mart mentioned they won't come back.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2010 at 9:49AM
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rock_oak_deer(8b TX)

That's exactly how I do it too. Refrigerate them and plant them out. I plant them in containers so it's easy to move them around.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2010 at 10:16AM
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beachplant(9b)

I buy a few, force them then toss them. I don't have any where to store bulbs for months at a time.
Anything that grows in Delaware, Michigan, Oregon...it's off the table for me.
Tally HO!

    Bookmark   October 27, 2010 at 11:36AM
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ladysmith94(TX)

Thank you all for your input. That is what I expected, but had to know.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2010 at 2:54PM
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tx_ag_95(7/8 Lewisville)

I planted one package/bulb five winters ago, on a whim. They've come back and bloomed for me each year, even though they've stayed in the ground since I planted them. They are on the east side of the house and there are glads planted around/on top, so maybe they don't get the really bad heat?

I'd get one or two, or as many as you're willing to "waste" money on, and see what happens. Maybe if you tell the bulbs that you don't expect them to come back, they'll do it just to show you that they can!

    Bookmark   October 27, 2010 at 5:31PM
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sowngrow(TX8)

I've grown purple hyacinths for many years. They multiply and come back year after year.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2010 at 9:58PM
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gimmeabreak

What a bunch of baloney I'm reading here! Why would anyone dig up hyancinths or any other bulbs in Texas? The ground doesn't freeze, which is the only reason you dig up bulbs, and is done only in the frozen north where the ground actually does freeze. This is exactly why there is so much erroneous gardening information out there and keeps getting spread even worse. Hyacinths do great anywhere in Texas, especially in zone 8 or colder. In fact, they are up right now and have been up about a month. Their leaves emerge in late summer/early fall as soon as the weather cools off, remain green all winter and burst with blooms in late winter/early spring. Have you never seen the grape hyacinths that have naturalized all over the place especially in lawns? They spread mainly by seed and the bulbs do multiply a lot. I know of countless stands of them that survived zero watering all summer and still put out their new leaves right on schedule. Summer heat has no effect on them because they go dormant in the summer (the leaves dry up but the bulb rests comfortably in the ground).

    Bookmark   October 27, 2010 at 11:31PM
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cynthianovak

gimmeabreak....are you perhaps thinking of "grape hyacinths" aka muscari? Their foliage is up now, they multiply and they are a different bulb.

I'm a fan of hyacinths too. They return if I leaven them in the ground but they are much smaller than the first year. Sometimes it's as if they only have a fraction of the little blooms.

I lift mine out of the deep pots or ground and even if I forget to pop them in the fridge mine are happier than when I leave them. Perhaps it's the heat and perhaps it's the fact that I'm always digging around...smiles

It is true that our ground does not freeze, but when we plant something that likes a chill period the fact that it doesn't stay consistently cold here is to our disadvantage. Not for many muscari but others. It may also be the clay soil and sporadic heavy rains. Some bulbs rot.

Baloney or not bulbs vary just like people in what we want and need. When we plant Dutch bulbs, we need to mimic what they like some way.

respectfully
c

    Bookmark   October 28, 2010 at 2:05PM
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merrybookwyrm

I ordered "Spanish hyacinths" some years back. They get morning sun, the bed tends to dry out majorly in summer, they co-exist with a cedar sage, and they have multiplied slowly. Mine are pale blue, pretty, and delicate.

Maybe if I ever fertilized them, they would spread more quickly. At least in north Texas, these hyacinths don't have to be dug and refrigerated to simulate winter conditions.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2010 at 3:22PM
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ibheri

Wow, its kind of tempting me to leave them in the groud this year, but what if they don't come back the next year, well I'll blame it on "gimmeabreak" :)

    Bookmark   October 28, 2010 at 4:21PM
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cweathersby

Muscari do extremely well here. They multiply quickly and thrive even in dry spots in the lawn, giving a nice spring show even with the competition of the grass and weeds.
Hyacinths come back for me every year, though not with the beauty you see in magazines. I have those bulbs in flower beds. My mother told me they wouldn't come back, but I watched hers come back year after year with that wonderful fragrance and showy beauty SO I went and got some of my own. Maybe they repeat for us because we are a little colder and a little wetter.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2010 at 4:24PM
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cynthianovak

I got some really nice hyacinths from Sam's waiting in the closet. 20 bulbs for $14 or $15.

Did y'all know that part of my Thanks Giving is to watch Sam's put their bulbs on sale. I've been know to gobble up boxes at 75% off. I've only bought the big hyacinths and am patiently waiting to give thanks....grins.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2010 at 9:21PM
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rock_oak_deer(8b TX)

gimmeabreak - You must be thinking of summer bulbs like caladiums that are dug up in the fall in cold climates. The problem in Texas is the weather here is often not cold enough to chill the Hyacinths in the ground. They require a long cold period of 10-13 weeks for best blooming. Hyacinths rebloomed beautifully for me when I lived in New England where the ground definitely freezes every year and we reliably had more than three months of cold. Here it's best to chill them to ensure they get what they need to bloom in the spring.

I have planted Hyacinths and Tulips out when they finished blooming and all I get the next year are a few leaves on the Tulips. The Hyacinth bulbs also rot in the ground here over the summer even though it's not nearly as wet as New England. There are some Tulips for warm climates that I plan to try eventually.

I have attached a link that explains the difference.

Here is a link that might be useful: Chilling bulbs

    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 9:48AM
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beachplant(9b)

yeah, we dig them up because it's NOT cold enough, not because they will freeze.
Hyacinths and grape hyacinths do NOT do well in all parts of Texas. They don't come back here, they don't naturalize in lawns here. We are zone 9b, the bulbs just rot away. Even if you do find a few that make it back next year, be it hyacinths, daffodils or others, they never come back the third year. There aren't masses of them growing around town, I don't see them on the mainland either.
On the other hand amaryllis, blood lilies, lycoris all do exceedingly well, return year after year and multiply like crazy.
This year I bought some daffodils for "southern climates" which when I went to plant them said to chill them for 3 months! Hello! That is not a bulb for "southern climates".
I planted some and put some in the fridge. I don't have high hopes.
Tally HO!

    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 10:43AM
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pjtexgirl(7b DFW)

I'm in 8a so they do well until we have a couple "warm" winters. I just start over with new ones then. Kinda like a biannual sort of.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 11:46AM
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pjtexgirl(7b DFW)

In a pot they'd have better drainage and less cold protection. Maybe that would help?

    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 11:47AM
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rock_oak_deer(8b TX)

Putting them out in a pot could work, but it's hard to know in advance if the winter will be cold enough. Last winter would have worked great, but this winter is predicted to be warmer. Up in DFW area you can plant them out or leave them out in pots and they probably will get cold enough most years. The original question and answers were about reliable blooming.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2010 at 10:37PM
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cynthianovak

some grape hyacinths return like troopers here. Serious "lawn lovers" big them out. But others might give me a year of beauty. pj, see if you have anyone who hates then near year...those are indestructable.

tally....so which bulbs did you get?

c

    Bookmark   October 30, 2010 at 10:06AM
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beachplant(9b)

C, I don't remember! I had the bags laying there and they got tossed in cleaning up. I planted 2 bags before reading, duh, what do I tell everyone? Read the label!
Got a bunch of new amaryllis from Maguires in Australia through a coop, and a bunch of new ones, 1/2 have arrived, from yahoo coop. Some more lycoris bulbs from the Mercer trade.
Tally HO!

    Bookmark   November 2, 2010 at 2:37PM
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cynthianovak

Hey Tally! I just read your post and noticed mine. Today I tossed the batteries from my wireless keyboard. No wonder I have had so many MANY typos lately! It took until it was so bad that I literally couldn't type a word without them.

Let us know what bulbs you ended up with. And of course how they do!

There was a lovely article in the Dallas Morning News garden section about the red spider lilies recently. She spoke to the Southern Bulbs owner and he said it takes 2 years for them to establish and bloom. I did not know that. It makes sense, I wonder how many times this happens.

Listening to rain here. It's a good thing
smiles
c

    Bookmark   November 2, 2010 at 10:44PM
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