Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Garden Where Bulbs Come to Die

Sadly I have learned that most Tulips and Irises  won't grow in my garden.  I thought it was me, that I was doing something to them.  The Tulips would come up, bloom and never come back or come back and never bloom again.  It was the same story for my Irises, though in their case they just never bloomed, standing tall and green teasing me.  Well I finally got a decent garden book "Garden Perennials for the Coastal South" and found out it wasn't me, I was not willfully destroying these hard working bulbs.  Rather it was the fact that these plants just weren't meant for this area.  To grow well here a plant must be able to put up with hot summers, no nighttime cooling, possibility of a sudden hard freeze and be able to fight off fungal diseases that do well in our humid climate.  The plant mustn't need a sustained winter freeze and be able to put up with the occasional summer drought and frequent winter saturation.  In other words don't plant Tulips and Irises here.
That is unless that Iris was meant to grow in a bog!  I've discovered Louisiana Irises, thanks to the book mentioned above, and I placed an order for 8 different Iris's and they came in yesterday.  I planted them today and I am hopeful, we'll see what next Spring brings.  Below are their catalog pictures.  But the sad fact remains, Tulips won't grow here, I can plant them, enjoy the bloom and then dig them up and throw them in the compost heap or move.  So I think I'll just plant more Irises.

Bayou Bluebell                                 Emigre

Beale Street           

                                                                          Laura Strawn

Bellvue's Michelle    

                                                              Grace Duhon

Bryan Bay                               


                                                                        Sea Knight


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