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Bulb Time!

Posted by evonnestoryteller 5-6 (My Page) on
Wed, Oct 7, 09 at 22:40

It is that time of year that I always purchase too many bulbs and go crazy planting them. It is that happy crazy that I enjoy.

Invasion of my daylilies is attempted once again with large cupped daffodils and a bulk bag of multi-colored tulips. I purchased four gladiator allium for my front garden in hopes of getting those child's head sized blossoms. In the very front of the front garden I mixed multi shades of blue grape hyacinth, wild tulips and mixed anenome. I always install more crocus into the lawn every fall.

I bet I have more, but I don't recall what.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Bulb Time!

I'm awaiting arrival of some Allium bulbs that I bought at the Chelsea Flower Show in London last May. Should be here any day! I've never grown any Alliums before, unless you count chives, which have great flowers!


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I've cut way back on the bulbs I plant lately because it seems I never get around to planting them. I've actually turned to buying just a couple dozen tulips, which I plant in pots. They don't return reliably for me, so I pot them up and treat them as annuals. And I do always add some minor bulbs like crocus or snowdrops to the garden, but only in small quantities (maybe 25 each) every year.

I will say, though, that just last night there was a bulb-forcing talk at my library which I organized. I've never forced bulbs, but after this talk I'm all fired up and ready to go, lol! I think it's safe to say I will be doing some bulb purchasing in the next few days!

:)
Dee


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RE: Bulb Time!

storyteller,
I usually try to stay away from bulbs because most of them dont allow me to change my mind and easily transplant them once I have come to my senses and realized they have been sited poorly. However your thread reminded me of how much I have always wanted some of those big ball alliums so off I went to Brent and Beckys and couldnt contain myself. I am curious when sighting alliums what would folks consider most important, hiding the dying foliage with companion plants, its structural impact in a late spring garden, or grouping these with other blooming or non- blooming for larger impact?


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I love buying bulbs, the bag is so full of potential and promise of spring beauty. However, they tend to accumulate in the garage, because I don't seem to find the time to plant them with the shorter days. I usually stick with crocus, hyacinth, and alliums, as they cover the breadth of the season with color instead of lingering foliage, and those little red beatles seem to leave them alone.

Alliums I do like for their flower and structural impact of a floating purple globe. The foliage on the past due allium is so minor, that I don't try to hide it. For more interest try leaving the dried allium flower in the garden. My girls like to pick the dried allium to use as magic wands.

Alliums are


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I finally bought, received and planted some allium bulbs this fall. I have 3 gigantium bulbs and 8 purple sensation, I think they were called. For years I admired them in other people's gardens, and only recently found out what they were and where to obtain them. I'm hoping they thrive.

I forced mini daffodil bulbs one year and it was a really nice touch of springtime in winter, indoors. I keep thinking it would be nice to repeat the experience but have never gotten around to it.


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I leave the dried flower heads on the alliums too! I painted mine blue this year which added a very bright splash of color to the garden. However, the brittleness of the flower head after the painting made it break apart in the hard rains.


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RE: Bulb Time!

  • Posted by claire z6b Coastal MA (My Page) on
    Fri, Oct 9, 09 at 13:19

According to UPS tracking, my shipment of tulip bulbs is "out for delivery" so they should arrive today (John Scheeper).

Usually I avoid tulips because of the ravenous squirrel population, but some freebie Carnaval de Nice tulips have come back for at least three years now.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

They're in a peony bed and the shape of the flower echoes the later peony flowers, so I decided to plant some more C d N, and found them at John Scheeper.

Of course while I was at the site I couldn't resist ordering other tulips (there may have been an order minimum, always my downfall).

10 TULIP ELEGANT LADY
10 TULIP MARILYN
10 TULIP YONINA

This will probably make my squirrels very happy next spring....

Claire


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I LOVE THOSE TULIPS!!!


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Claire, those are SO pretty. How nice that they return for you. I might have to get some next year. Not this year, tho -- and here's why:

Scene one: Back last April, I ordered 300 daffodil bulbs. Five varieties. Then I had a major "senior moment", forgot that I had ordered, and at the end of the month, ordered another 300. SO, there I was a couple of weeks ago, realizing I would shortly have over 600 bulbs to plant. Yikes!!

Scene two: The bulb shipment arrived yesterday. Holy Goddess of Growing Things!! Instead of 100 'Fortune' daffs, they sent 500. 100 'Barrett Browining' they sent 520. Instead of 50 'White Lion' I got 250. AND they didn't send any of two other daffs I had ordered, so those will still be coming -- another 200 if they get it right this time.

Scene three: So I phoned them and the outcome is definitely in my favor. They will be sending the other daffs I didn't receive, AND I get to keep all the mixed-up extras!! =)

Scene four: Planting mania! Thank goodness for a willing husband to help dig. And I am sharing lots with friends and relatives, even the two guys who are here working on renovation projects today. I hope I am still able to move this aging body after planting. But, OH! how glorious it will be come spring!!


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OMG! Roxanna I'm glad to hear that you have a small army of helpers! Happy digging and please post lots of photos come spring. I love daffodils. Your property will like like spring in Varekyno (sp?) in the movie, Dr Zhivago! You really hit the jackpot with that outfit where you placed your orders!


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wow, Roxanna, I would love to see pictures of next spring, too.
I spent too much time and $ on fall shrub and perennial sales so I limited my bulb purchase to some pink tulips with variegated foliage. I think the resident coyote has kept the squirrel population down but I know we have at least one brazen, thieving chipmunk that likes tomatoes and maybe tulips. Last years tulips made it ok, at least most of them. I saw a tulip growing by the edge of the brook that I know I didn't plant. A friend said all of her bulbs got re-planted last year by some critter.


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if i live through the planting of all these bulbs, i'll post pics when they bloom. on the other hand, if i keel over and my husband eventually finds my cold, dead body still clutching the trowel, i have given him orders to just sift some compost over me and hold a small family memorial service... at least there will be flowers! =)


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ROFL


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ROTFLMAO too! Here's hoping it doesn't come to that!


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That's funny! I hope your yard looks like Holland next spring!

Years ago in a state of youthful exuberance, I bought 150 naturalizing daff bulbs from Whiteflower Farm plus Queen Elizabeth tulips. Got so excited, I ran around the yard like Maid Marian on a weed high stuffing those little buggers everywhere. No sooner finished and in the house washing my hands, when I spied a chipmunk literally digging up a QE tulip and dragging it away! *&%# I yelled and went charging after him, to no avail, of course. When spring sprung, I had exactly two (2) daffodils and one (1) tulip. Chipmunks were gone and for years I was convinced they got so fat that they couldn't get back out of their little hole in the ground houses! Soooo frustrating. Want pictures for sure, roxanne.

Kindly,
Jane


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RE: Bulb Time!

Xmas tree store has a bulb planting trowel on a short shovel handle apparatus. It actually works pretty well. I was surprised but it has saved my knees.

For some odd reason, which defies the law of conservation of mass, whenever I dig a hole I never have enough dirt to backfill it! This bulb do-hickey retains the backfill dirt in the tool until I push it out with a stick. I felt like the daffodil johnny appleseed this weekend!


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"...For some odd reason, which defies the law of conservation of mass, whenever I dig a hole I never have enough dirt to backfill it!..."

OMG! Too funny! I find I have the same problem, lol!

:)
Dee


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oh, Jane, i feel your pain -- and to think i used to love chipmunks. now i curse whenever i see them, which is often. on the other hand, i don't believe they can be blamed for the loss of your daffs -- since they are poisonous, they are usually exempt from being eaten by anything. wonder if they were just "bad" bulbs.

by the way, do you know about Bulb Insurance? it is made of ground oyster shells, sold by Gardener's Supply, and works quite well to foil the critters who munch underground. i use it for tulips as they are considered fine eating by critters, but don't bother using it for my daffs. i just received a bag of it today, so now i can plant my tulips (if the weather would improve - it's 31 degrees at the moment).


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All this time I was wrongly blaming the Chip and Dales of the world. Thanks, Roxanna, for setting the record straight. No, I didn't know about the oyster insurance (good info to pass along) because I gave up planting bulbs after the rather expensive lot failed - and that was 35 years ago, lol. The few bulbs I plant now are raised in the house for winter blooming in the window! Glad you cleared the chipmunk name, and I'll never know what happened to those 148 bulbs. I know moles were building condo villages back then, but, it is a long gone cold case now. We'll all await your 'Holland' heaven next spring. Thanks for the info.


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RE: Bulb Time!

  • Posted by claire z6b Coastal MA (My Page) on
    Thu, Oct 22, 09 at 16:27

A couple of days ago I got an email notification that a shipment from Brent and Becky's Bulbs was on the way and would be delivered today! I'd completely forgotten about this order and I discovered that I had 120 bulbs to plant somewhere.

I looked at the list and looked out at the fall jungle of asters and goldenrod and ornamental grasses and whatever and just thought WHAT WAS I THINKING! THERE'S NO ROOM OUT THERE!

After a day or so of panic, I remembered that I usually make a note when I order bulbs of where I planned to put them. I rooted around and found the note from last May and realized that the order made sense. The garden is very different, even sparse, when the pierises and azaleas are blooming.

I planted 80 of the bulbs today, being overseen by some very wary turkeys who were torn being fleeing and eating, and I'll plant the rest tomorrow.

Roxanna, are you still planting? I haven't seen any sad notices in the paper....

Claire


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I have about two hundred bulbs to plant this weekend. Can't wait to get them in the ground!

Lisa


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Very pretty tulips Claire! This thread reminds me there is a pot of hyacinths sitting out by the bird feeders, I will plant those this weekend in a new bed I've been working on.

Bulbs are so cheerful in the Spring, they look so pretty naturalized in between the perennials. I love to put daffodils in between the daylilies too!

In early April the crocuses pop up -

Then in late April the hyacinths and daffs -


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Claire, you were just being funny, right? am i still planting?? does the earth circle the sun? hee. i am doing the best i can, more slowly than i would like, tho. only managed to get 50 planted today. here's the usual routine:
dress appropriately for grubbing in dirt. rub gloves-in-a-bottle into hands so washing up afterwards will be easier. remind self to order more of this fabulous product from lee valley tools (fabulous company). gather up both large rubber baskets filled with tools, bulbs, oyster shells, bulb booster, kneeling cusion. trudge out to the area in need of bulbs. lay down tools, etc. and go drag the hose up. oh, da*m, DH left it tangled -- i'll deal with HIM later, he's a dead man. grrrr. spend 20 minutes de-tangling hose and dragging it to location. bloody tiring, that. rest a few minutes. prod self to get started.

heave self up and then immediately into kneeling position. groan as body creaks. ignore it. begin attacking the soil with my hand mattock-- what will we find here? sandy loam (wouldn't THAT be a treat)? clay? ah, joy, some rocks the size of my fist... and more even bigger. le sigh. whack, hack and dig out with my trusty small shovel -- thank heavens i can use this little item whilst kneeling, so i don't have to do the vertical rise-and-groan bit.

dig to China. well, okay, 6 inches or so, but it might as well be to China. sprinkle bulb booster on bottom of trench/hole to feed the bulbs. sprinkle a bit of soil so roots wont burn. place bulbs. fill to top of bulbs, press down and water in well. add remaing soil and water again.

rise to vertical if possible, gather up tools, etc. and move on to next designated area. repeat until exhaustion sets in, darkness looms, or bored with the whole mess (whichever comes first) and lug everything, including remaining unplanted bulbs - which have multiplied when my back was turned, i swear it - and go to bed.

repeat whenever the weather cooperates, isn't actively snowing, or until the ground freezes hard.

i may still be doing this until Thanksgiving...


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LOL, Roxanna, sounds like you were describing me! I really do love bulbs, but I do find planting them tiresome. I always hear about how easy they are to plant, and I guess they are, but there's something... dare I say boring? about planting a couple hundred of them! I never seem to dig the hole deep enough, especially after digging several holes, although things usually turn out okay in the end.

I just got my box from Scheepers yesterday evening. I tossed it in the garage - no planting today. Had to work and it's pouring out anyway. Hopefully tomorrow I can get some planted.

:)
Dee


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roxanne, don't forget the good way to use up a lot of your bulbs- mass planting in pots- as taught by the Fine Gardng article i posted a while ago. Such a windfall!!
best,
mindy wow, imagine having the #1 geranium in the world named after you!! gardeners you meet will have no trouble remembering YOUR name!


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Mindy, poster = ROXANNA

#1 geranium = ROZANNE, I assume?

Pretty close...:)

I just bought a Rozanne from Bluestone this fall, had to get one because so many people have raved about it. She is planted out with some Digitalis purpurea and some Aquilegia seedlings. Can't wait to see what flowers next year!


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LOL, i have been called "RoxannE' many times, -- even my mother would call me that (tho she spelled it, when she did so, as "Roxann" - no E). and she ought to have known better since she named me for HER mother! but it is Roxanna, with an "A". =)

that geranium is the closest to my name other than a lovely potentilla i saw many years ago, which actually was "Roxana". unfortunately, i didn't get one, and now can no longer find it anywhere. doesn't that just figure. le sigh.


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There seem to be seeds online, but I do not recognize the companies.

http://www.esveld.nl/htmldiaen/p/ponrox.htm
Photo of Roxana

Here is a link that might be useful: Potentilla


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I just pruchased saffron crocus bulbs too. I always wanted those! They blossom in the fall. :) Now I am looking at the parrot tulips because the Mardi Gras tulips above are so pretty!


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thanks, evonne, for the seed link. sadly, i am the world's worst at growing from seed. in 40 years, i have never been successful at it. bummer! especially as so many things can only be had by that method. but i definitely have a black thumb with seeds. =(


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I picked up manure at Agway and they were having a 2 for 1 sale on bulbs.
:-0
I got flame tulips, a large bag of Ice Folly daffodils, another large bag Tequile Sunrise tulips, a red, white and blue mixture of crocus because I never had any red crocus and 2 boxes of Camassia. I never heard of Camassia, but it says on the box they are native to North America. They had these other crocus with red stripes... never saw them before, can't find them online... got those too.

Holy crimoly! I thought I was done!


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Red crocus? Huh, never saw those before! Can you please post pictures in the spring? I'd love to see those!

Roxanna, have you tried winter-sowing?

:)
Dee


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OOPS! It says red white and blue crocus. Lol. You will laugh when you read the description. The photo is the same so I have to go read more carefully. I am betting this is what I have:

Here is a link that might be useful: Red, White & Blue Mix of Tulips & Crocus


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Dee ~ no, i haven't yet tried winter sowing. i fist found out about such a thing last year by chance. it is intriguing! since i am at my wits' end right now, still planting my bulbs, and with the garden/yard clean-up still ahead of me, i don't think winter sowing will be happening this year. but i'd certainly like to try it sometime. maybe it will be the answer to my "death to seedlings!" and i'll have better luck. =)


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Here are the crocus with the purple reddish stripes that I got. :) At least these are really crocus.

Here is a link that might be useful: Wild Crocus: Minimus


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Oh darn! No red crocus! Oh well - but those crocus minimus are GORGEOUS! I just might have to buy some!

Roxanna - it's WINTER sowing, lol! You have plenty of time! I don't even start mine until the last week of January or the first week of February. I can't recommend it strongly enough. I never grew anything from seed because I just had no luck - or would forget to bring stuff in after a day of "hardening off outside" and they'd die overnight on the front steps. But since finding WSing, I now sell cutflowers at the farmer's market, that's how successful I've been in starting from seed. I do hope you will give it a try!

:)
Dee
Who keeps remembering every day when she sees this thread that she STILL hasn't even opened the box of bulbs she got last week!


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It has been awhile since I posted, but I can't resist a friendly taunt: you guys are planting wuss quantities of bulbs!
My DH and I planted about 700 muscari bulbs last weekend. another 800 to go, and another 700 coming from Colorblends this week. What was I thinking? I have a dream.....A vision anyway of a great sweep of blue muscari all along the wide back border, circling the maple tree (before they drought to death by maple roots in the summer) enveloping the leatherleaf viburnum. Oh I could go on, but we will know the truth late next spring. And don't go pointing out that they only need to buried 3 inches compared to the 8 inches daff gardeners have to excavate. A back is a back is a back is sore after an afternoon of digging, squatting (who squats?) sitting, hauling one's increasingly large rump across the damp soil.

A joint effort has its funny moments. Sometimes we lose track and plant and then the area is excavated again, revealing the bulbs planted a half hour before. Or an area gets filled before the bulbs are set just right, burying some that are sideways, upside down, on top of each other, etc. There's the foot or two that just gets skipped.

This is a time when being compulsive would help, but neither of has it in us.

If someone really wants to lord it over because you have tulips and daffs you have to plant soooo deep, well....I've got .....a hundred....? I can't bear to think about it....


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now, idabean, do be more sympathetic to those of us who are doing daffs -- those extra inches WE have to dig are definitely to be taken into consideration, LOL. picture me, if you dare: vertically-challenged, over 60, overweight, over-ambitious, hauling MY over-sized arse around the acreage with my nose nearly touching the soil as i hack and scrape my holes. too many rocks, the soil is chilly now, and my back has given up completely, to say nothing of my wrists.

thanks goodness i plant my daffs by the trench method, clumping the bulbs in groups of 5-25. it's still a lot of digging! but here's a hint for you: when you have covered up your bulbs, mark the spot with a sprinkle of bulb food. this keeps you aware of where you've put them!

i adore your vision of a sea of blue. i saw something similar once -- a slope near a great copper beech tree covered in blue scilla that was divine... always wanted to try it, but i never seem to order any of the small bulbs. of course, after this year's mammoth daff order-by-mistake (total of 3400 bulbs by my count they sent by their error) i may never plant daffs again. why would i need to, LOL? but perhaps i'll consider getting a bunch of scilla and -- what am i thinking?? more digging???? let me re-think this for a while.... =)


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I look forward to the spring photos!


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I don't do bulbs...well I planted some daffodils a few years ago. But circumstances are GIVING me bulbs so I thought I'd come here and ask and VOILA - an entire thread!

So the question is (and seemingly answered): can I still plant bulbs?

Darling mother is gifting me with a gazillion bulbs that she purchased (not really knowing what they are, etc.) and I can't get them until next weekend. I'd be able to get them in the ground before Thanksgiving and we haven't had a freeze yet (just barely a frost).

So I'm safe? Sorta? Kinda?


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I think you can plant bulbs into December in zone 6, as long as the ground is workable, there should be enough warms down below for the rooting to continue...at least that's what the article I found says....

I'm debating on whether to get some more bulbs for my garden. There is always room for more!

Lisa

Here is a link that might be useful: Planting Bulbs


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Idabean, WOW on the Muscari, and I would love to see pics of those when they bloom!

Fgirl - how great to get bulbs from your Mom - definitely go ahead and plant them. Water well and throw a little bulb fertilizer in the holes with them - when I do this even the hyacinths give me pretty good blooms.

I sort of had bulbs foisted on me too - the previous owner planted them all - lots of them, all kinds, everywhere. The middle of the Vinca, the middle of the lawn, in dense shade. New ones are still coming up every year. For years I have (hopefully) moved them around for better effect, and given tons of them away. They have definitely "grown" on me - they are so pretty and cheerful in the Spring after a long dreary winter.


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Thanks so much. Just when I thought my gardening was "done" for the year (at least until winter sowing) looks like I'll be out digging in the dirt some more!


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Ah, I was hoping my post would bring some commiseration. Roxann, I bow to you. 3400 daffodils. How can I even compare 2000 muscari that only need to be planted 3-4 inches deep. How in the heck did they get an order that wrong? How many did you mean to order? 3400 calls for a crew of young people with backs...Are they mixed?The daffs, I mean, not the people. I hope you have the acreage to let the foliage ripen. How many times have I made the mistake of planting dafs in the main beds where they stay for months and months letting the foliage "ripen." It feels like a real waste of real estate by June.
We should all know how much ibuprofen is left before we head out to the garden at this time of year.

Cheers!
Idabean


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I should be pretty darn excited to learn that I can plant bulbs up until December and that bulbs are 2 for 1 at Agway. I think the cold puts a damper on things for me. I barely got 30 bulbs planted this weekend. Lol.


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update for idabean ~ i meant to order around 300 bulbs, five different daffs and one tulip. placed the order twice (my fault, due to major senior moment three weeks after placing the first order). 6 months later, when the order arrived on my doorstep, i was swamped by THEIR mistake -- i figure that where i said i wanted 20 BULBS, on the form, they mis-read it as 20 PACKAGES -- and every package had 5 bulbs in it. and in reality, they doubled that amount, for reasons i cannot imagine. feeling generous that day? new help that can't do math? who knows??!

all i know is that they let me keep everything since it was their error. and things on my 3 acres ought to look splendiferous next spring! i did give lots away to family and friends, even the six ladies at the local library got some. and it took forever to plant them, even with my husband digging most of the long trenches... i usually plant daffs amongst my daylilies so the ripening foliage is fairly well hidden .

can't wait to see it all!!!


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Seeing this thread again has reminded me that I still have two packages of tulips to plant. Those are not such a big deal because they will go in a pot and they're fairly cheap.

But I also have 3 allium Globemasters to plant. Those were planned for the ground, which is now covered with snow (though I'm sure it won't last long) but the bulbs are expensive so I have to get my butt in gear.

It's supposed to be 52 degrees tomorrow. Why is it always warm and/or sunny when you can't get out in the garden?!

:)
Dee


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