It’s still wet and rainy here in Southern California, so I can only look outside at my balcony and enjoy my plants from indoors. I have a few seedlings growing, but am thinking about adding bulbs to grow in some of my pots as well. So, this post is going to be about how to grow bulbs, specifically in pots.
What is a Bulb?
First of all, what is a bulb anyway? They look like, funny, huge seeds that are covered in dirt.
Bulbs have all the nutrients the plant needs to survive, which is especially important during the colder months. These nutrients also help the new plant grow healthy.
Bulbs vs. Seeds
There are some differences between seeds and bulbs, which may make you favor one over the other. I have more experience growing plants from seeds, but have grown plants from bulbs as well.
Seeds are perennial, annual, and biennial, while most bulbs are perennial. Bulbs do not need as much care as seeds do to grow. Bulbs can also be moved around easier than plants grown as seeds.
Different Types of Bulbs
There are several different types of bulbs. There are true bulbs, rhizomes, tubers, and corms. Below is more details about each type of bulb.
True bulbs-These bulbs are similar to an onion in that they grow in layers. The tube bulb contains a small version of the flower that will bloom.
Rhizomes-The stems of these plants grow horizontally to protect itself from the elements above the soil. This is also done to make room for new plants to grow from these stems.
Tubers-Tubers look similar to potatoes with their rough skin and eyes. Flowers bloom from the eyes of the tubers.
Corms-Corms do not have layers like true bulbs do. They contain material that will help keep the flowers and leaves healthy.
Best Flower Bulbs
There are many beautiful flowers you can enjoy growing from bulbs. I’m going to limit my list to flowers bulbs that grow well in containers, since that is all I have to grow my plants in for now! These plants also grow well in the zone I live in as well, so keep this in mind when looking for flower bulbs to plant in your containers.
Dahlias-These large flowers come in a variety of colors, as well as sizes. These bushy flowers are related to daisies and zinnias.
Ranunculas-Also called buttercups, these flowers look similar to roses in that the petals grow on top of one another, in a spiral similar to roses. You can find these in all types of colors.
Tulips-Like the above flowers, tulips come in all kinds of colors for you to enjoy. They have cup-shaped flowers, which can add depth and variety to a container filled with different types of flower bulbs.
Lillies-These huge flowering plants come in subtle and bright colors, making them a popular plant to have in a container, or any type of garden.
Daffodil-Daffodils come in bright yellow with trumpet like middles for the flowers.
Canna-Cannas are tropical plants with tall, bright colored flowers.
Gladiolus–Gladiolus are part of the iris family. The are also called the sword lily, due to their tall leaves and colorful flowers that grow in spikes.
How to Grow Bulbs
Once you’ve bought your bulbs, its time to plant them in your containers! Make sure your containers are large enough for your plants to grow into. Check that your containers have drainage holes so that water does not sit at the bottom, rotting out the roots.
Next, you want to have plenty of potting mix for your bulbs. There are plenty of great organic and synthetic ones to choose from. I use Miracle Gro Potting Mix for most of my plants and they love it!
Choose which bulbs you want to plant and if you are going to mix and match different types in one container. Plant your bulbs several inches deep to give them plenty of room to grow. Make sure to water the bulbs once they are planted.
Then, watch as your bulbs grow into beautiful flowers for you to enjoy! Now you know how to grow bulbs in containers! What bulbs have you grown or are planning to grow?
Let me know in the comments section below. Happy planting!