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Timing Gladiolus

Posted by chengpu42 8a (My Page) on
Thu, Jun 13, 13 at 0:35

I am trying to grow a bunch of gladiolus for my upcoming wedding on Sept 21st. Can anybody provide some insight on how well gladiolas grow in the PNW. I am located in Auburn, Wa (zone 8a) and most info says they will bloom in 75-90 days. I am wondering in our weather if that still holds true. The soil they are going in is good quality and they are going to get 6 hours full sun everyday from 10am to 4pm the rest will be partial-sun and shade.

I have 110 Green Star, 108 Plum Tart, 90 random purple (from hollandbulbfarm), and 90 random white (from hollanbulbfarm). My plan was to stagger plant them so the projected bloom date will be Sept 16th 5 days before the wedding so the buds should be mid way in flowering. So i would plant 40% on June 9th (90 days out), 40% on June 26th (82 days out), and 20% on July 4th (75 days) out).

How long will the flowers last on the plant if they bloom early (i am guessing 2 weeks), is 90/82/75 days to bloom realistic in this zone, and is targeting a bloom time of 5 days before the wedding about right? Anybody have any insights into timing gladiolas? Does my plan look like it will work?

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RE: Timing Gladiolus

  • Posted by bboy USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA (My Page) on
    Thu, Jun 13, 13 at 14:32

Conventionally June is the last month to plant these; the peak bloom is rather brief as once the bottom half of flowers on each spike has gone over the decorative effect is over, even though the rest of the spike is still opening - glads really only look good when the first few flowers have opened, down at the bottom. And if the ones you have chosen are anything other than miniatures you can expect to have to stake each individual stalk before the flowers open as otherwise the weight of the expanding blooms often bends the stalk over abruptly. Of course, if you are going to be cutting each one in the early stages of bloom maybe you won't have that problem.

Some long-blooming perennials or even annuals, that did not need such precise timing would certainly be a lot less trouble - as long as you are willing and able to care for them the whole time you need them (the glads won't grow themselves either, but other than the staking requirement they are quite easy - unless they get thrips).

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