So this past weekend was Easter and for many it is a plant giving holiday – we see Easter Lilies and pots of daffodils and all sorts of beautiful spring flowers being bought to help decorate homes and offices.
All of these lovely flowers should be enjoyed – and many can go out into the garden after they have been amazing indoor flowers!
A few thoughts:
Easter Lilies – Our advice – enjoy them – then throw them out as this is not an easy plant to re-bloom. Easter Lilies do not like our cold winters and while not impossible to restart are plants only for the very brave. So we like to keep then as an indoor flower then replace them when they stop blooming. A trick to help keep them in bloom longer is to strip off the pollen parts (officially called anthers) as the flowers open – that will keep them in bloom a bit longer.
Potted bulbs – daffodils, tulips and hyacinths – When we plant these spring flowers bulbs in our gardens we do that in fall – typically after mid – September. These bulbs are planted pretty deeply in the garden – usually about 15 cm (6”) deep – where they root into the soil in the fall – overwinter in the garden then grow and bloom in spring. Potted versions of these are forced to bloom in greenhouses and while the bulbs are a bit tired after that treatment – you can take your potted bulbs and plant them out in the garden. Typically you would dig a hole in the garden about 25 cm (10”) or so deep – add some rich compost to the bottom of the hole as the soil around the bulbs is likely pretty tired. Take off the plastic pot and any wrap and tuck soil in around the root ball. Let the yellowed leaves stay on the plants – and the bulbs will join the rest of your herd.
Mini-Roses – We see a lot of mini-roses sold as potted plants around this time of year. A trick we think work for most is to use them as a container plant on your patio after they have served inside as a potted plant. Put them as a ‘filler’ plant in a mixed container – they love sunny spots and we like to see the amazing little flowers up close- so a patio planter is a good bet!
Hydrangea – We love Hydrangeas – and we see some amazing potted ones in early spring. Problem is that most of the varieties that look so good indoors are not great garden plants – we have better varieties for the garden. That said, it is very acceptable to try to overwinter a potted Hydrangeas after it has done its thing indoors. Use a lot of mulch to help protect the roots and plant then in a protected corner of the garden – preferable near the house.
One of the best things about gardening is that we get to try new things every year! New ideas – new colours – new plants all are fair game. We think that trying to re-bloom a potted plant can be fun – and when it works we feel pretty darn good about our efforts and at the same time don’t worry too much if we fail – as there is always something new to try!
So enjoy your early spring garden plants and have a great spring!