Saturday, October 27. 2018, I will be delivering 2 lectures on fall planted bulbs at Rutgers Gardens in New Brunswick, NJ. These lectures are open to the public for a fee of $50 per lecture. More information is available at the following link: http://rutgersgardens.rutgers.edu/fallclasses.html
This morning lecture will discuss flower bulbs that should be planted in the fall and will take place from 10 – 12 noon as follows:
An In-depth Lecture on the Rare, Magnificent Spring Blooming Flowers Whose Bulbs Must Be Planted in Autumn
It’s fall, time to think SPRING!! This is a detailed lecture designed
to introduce/remind you of the bulbs, besides tulips, daffodils and
crocus, that can populate your garden with beautiful blossoms and feed
the newly awakened pollinators throughout the spring. Critter-resistant
bulbs, pollinator friendly bulbs, forcing bulbs and growing bulbs in
containers will be discussed. This lecture is beautifully illustrated
with photos and there is a free bulb gift for each attendee.
This afternoon lecture will discuss vegetables and flowers that should be planted in the fall. Details as follows:
From Garlic to Lupines
A Detailed Lecture on the Crops for Fall Planting
We all love our spring planted gardens, but some would argue that the greatest excitement and satisfaction in gardening comes from the fall planted flowers and vegetables. After completing the fall clean-up of your garden, put it to rest by planting some flowers, vegetables and herbs. The cold winter months nourish and strengthen many sets and seeds. Onions, garlic, leeks, parsnips, elephant garlic, lupines, poppies and some herbs should be planted in the fall in the Mid-Atlantic. This lecture will provide the ‘how-to’ for the vegetables, flowers and herbs that can be planted in autumn and that can survive the winter planted in containers.
I will bring vegetable sets, flower bulbs and seeds to sell. If you live in the New Jersey, down state New York, Delaware, Pennsylvania or Maryland areas, this is an event worth attending. Rarely will you have the opportunity to learn about bulbs and then be able to purchase them on site. Please join us.
Paperwhites – you either love them or hate them. Their fragrance is either sweet pleasure or the cause of some mighty headaches. Paperwhites belong to a class of daffodils known as Tazetta Narcissus. All Tazettas share these common qualities: their flower stems produce multiple blossoms from 3-20 per stem; their flowers are fragrant with Paperwhites having the strongest fragrance of all and they all can be forced in water without a 10-13 week stay in the refrigerator.
It doesn’t get any easier than forcing Tazettas in water. Place some small stones, marbles or glass beads in a bowl, and then arrange a few bulbs on top of the marbles, beads or stones fitting them snugly against each other. Fill the bowl with water to the base of the bulbs. DO NOT COVER THE BULBS WITH WATER. Maintain the water level at the bottom of the bulb. Bulbs do not need sunlight and can be grown in lamplight. In a week to 10 days, the bulbs will sprout and in about 30 days they will bloom. Once the bulbs start to bloom, if you keep them in a cool area like a north facing window, the blooms will last longer.
This newsletter discusses Paperwhites and two of their cousins. In addition, Narcissus Cragford and Narcissus Canaliculatis are also Tazettas that force well in water and are availableon our website..
I have already written about Thalia in the 9-29-2018 newsletter. Thalia was introduced into cultivation in 1915. Known as the “Orchid Narcissus”, this lovely plant produces up to 5 slightly drooping, ‘chaotic’ white flowers with a slight pinkish tinge. The ‘chaos’ produces the effect of a drift of white blossoms dancing across the garden. The blossoms are quite long-lasting.
Thalias are as tall as Paperwhites, but do not produce as many flowers per stem. Their fragrance is much more subtle, and for people who cannot stand the fragrance of Paperwhites, Thalias are a delightful alternative.
Don’t Miss Out on Fall Planting Bulbs – BUY NOW!
Silver Chimes is a tall, strongly fragrant Tazetta narcissus with white petals and a pale, lemon yellow cup. A single flower stem can produce up to 7 blossoms. Though the fragrance is strong, it is nowhere near as strong as that of the Paperwhites.
Silver Chimes is an old narcissus that was developed more than 105 years ago by the Martins, a father and son team from Truro, Cornwall, UK.
Don’t Miss out on Paperwhites – Buy Now!
Many people do not like paperwhites for 2 important reasons: they can’t stand the heavy fragrance, and they can’t stand that paperwhites often get leggy and fall over. We can’t do anything about the fragrance, but we can help you with the legginess.
IF YOU WANT SHORT PAPERWHITES, GET THEM DRUNK!!
Anna Pavord in her extraordinary book, BULB, tells this charming story:
“A horticultural student at New York’s Cornell University accidentally spilled some of his alcoholic beverage into a pot of paperwhites that had just sprouted. A few weeks later, his fellow students noticed that the plants that had imbibed were shorter than others, even though the blooms were the same size.
Four months and three trials later, the findings were announced: a few drops of alcohol result in stalks that are 40% shorter, which means they do not flop over.
The best way to ply your paperwhites with liquor is to place pebbles in a container, add water just to the top of the pebbles and rest the bulbs on the pebbles. Once sprouts are 2 in. tall, carefully pour out the water and replace with a mixture of nine parts water to one part alcohol.
Keep in mind that paperwhites prefer hard liquor: rum, gin, tequila and vodka have all proved effective.
Wine or beer can damage the bulbs, so choose your potent potable responsibly. Cheers!”
If you are enchanted by the idea of enjoying a bowl of blooming fragrance in your home on a dull gray, frigid, wet November-February day, then try some Paperwhites or their less fragrant cousins, Tazetta narcissus Silver Chimes or Tazetta narcissus Thalia.
Celebrate your uniquely American horticultural heritage
Harvest Your History
Seed Your Future
on orders $50 and above
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