I am soooo ready for spring. Ready to get outside and start a flower garden.
Here are a few flowers to start your garden:
- Pansy. You can start pansy seeds indoors 6 to 8 weeks before you plan on transplanting them. Plant seeds in late winter for early spring and summer flowering, or plant seeds in the summer for winter flowering. Plant in moist, humus-rich, well-drained soil. Pansies like sun and cooler temperatures. Space the plants about 7 to 12 inches apart. They will spread about 9 to 12 inches and grow to be about 6 to 9 inches tall. More information on Pansy HERE
- Iris. Plant them in a sunny spot in late summer. The plants need well-drained soil and at least six hours of sunlight per day. A full day of sun is even better to keep the rhizomes dry. (The rhizomes are the fleshy rootlike structures at the base of the plant.) Prepare their beds. They recommend a low-nitrogen fertilizer and a soil pH slightly less than 7, which is neutral. Apply a granular fertilizer twice a year — in early spring and just after bloom when the rhizomes are forming the next year’s flowers. Water only if it is extremely dry or after transplanting. Give them room to breathe. Bearded iris require good air circulation. Plant them a minimum of 16 to 18 inches apart (less space for dwarf irises and more for taller varieties). Do not mulch. Mulching retains moisture, and too much moisture will cause soft rot of the rhizomes. Read more about Iris HERE
3. Daffodils. Be sure to plant daffodil bulbs with the pointy end up and the fatter, somewhat flattened end down. Plant your daffodils twice as deep as the bulb is tall. In other words, if a bulb is 2 inches from the base to the tip, you would dig a 6-inch deep hole to put the bulb 4 inches below the soil level. Deep planting helps prevent frost heave and protects the bulbs from accidental damage from spades and rakes. You don’t need to measure the hole, you can just best guess it. Larger bulbs go deeper, of course, and smaller bulbs go closer to the surface.
Plant the bulbs more deeply in sandy soil, and more shallowly in heavier, clay-type soils. You will want to cover the bulbs with soil and then water them well after you’re finished planting them. Mulch the area with pine bark mulch, chopped leaves, or whatever you usually use as mulch to help protect it. In zones 6 and 7, garden daffodils will bloom in April, but sometimes sooner in a mild winter region (zones 8 and 9). Of course, this means they bloom later in colder regions.
Growing daffodils is very reliable and they will come back year after year. Combining them with other kinds of plants such as perennials, annuals and shrubs, will make your garden a livelier and most interesting area. Read more HERE
- Plant in spring or early fall.
- Most large-leafed varieties require dappled shade; avoid deep shade or full sun. A sunny spot that receives a few hours of shade is perfect.
- Soil should be well-drained, humus-rich, moist, and acidic (pH 4.5–6).
- Amend planting areas with compost, peat moss, or a substitute, only if your soil is poor.
- Azaleas and rhododendrons have shallow root systems and need moist soil and mulch to keep them from drying out.
- When shopping for plants, pay attention to when they flower. Early varieties can blossom in March, late ones into July or even the fall.
- Buy plants that are a deep green (not yellowed), not wilted, and well watered. Check the soil in the container with your finger and avoid plants that are bone dry.
- Space plants 2 to 6 feet apart. Dig a hole as deep as the root ball and 2 times as wide.
- Set new plants so that their top roots are at soil level or slightly below. If you plant them any deeper, the roots may rot.
- Fill the hole half full with soil, then water it well to settle the soil before filling with remainder of soil.
- Read more about Azaleas HERE
5. Bloodroot. A bloodroot is a white wildflower that’s popular with gardeners who want attractive plants for the shady areas of their gardens. The flower is 1 1/2 inches wide with several contrasting yellow stamens. It blooms from a 6- to 8-inch stem that has a single 4- to 8-inch light green rounded leaf. Although white, the flower got its name because its roots have a bloodred sap that Native Americans used to create dye.
Bloodroot is a low maintenance flower and is generally very easy to grow. But there are a few mistakes gardeners should avoid in order to guarantee their wildflowers thrive. Read more HERE