Sunday, August 13, 2006

My gladioli just keep coming back

I enjoy glads as cut flowers, so each season I have a few growing in the vegetable patch.

I've always read that gladiola isn't hardy for northern gardeners, and that you have to lift the corms each fall, store them in the winter and replant in spring.

That hasn't proved true in my Zone 5 (Canadian Zone 6) garden over the past five years. When I first planted my gladiola corms, I dug them up in the fall and went through the whole business of storing them in the basement and replanting.

Then one year I decided not to bother - if I wanted them again, I'd just buy them. It was a very cold winter, and so I was surprised to see glads come up where they had grown the previous season.

That particular batch kept going until we finally grassed the spot over. It was the mowing that finally did them in.

I planted the ones I have now three years ago. An apricot cultivar whose name I don't know is shown here (I've had a most enjoyable weekend playing with my camera). Each spring I wonder if they're toast, but at least so far they have just kept on keeping on. Chalk up another happy accident in the garden!

I've love to hear from northern gardeners who have had similar experiences. We don't have reliable snow cover where I live in southern Ontario, so I wonder if they're surviving because of deep planting. I dig a trench when planting, so the glad corms go in quite deep - about 8 to 10 inches. Our soil is amended clay loam that's well-drained.

By the way, I buy my glads through Vesey's Seeds. They ship to customers in Canada and the US.

More on happy accidents next time.

1 comment:

  1. I've had mixed success leaving glads in the ground in zone 5, so I generally try to remember to dig them in the fall. But, as you noted, for the price, it is sometimes easier to just take a chance and if they don't come up, buy a few corms in the spring. Of course, if you have special varieties, you might not want to take the chance.


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