Glads, Iris and Drumsticks
Master Gardener Scoop – September 27, 2017
By Leora McTall, Master Gardener
Fall is in the air, and what do gardeners think of – Spring!
Sounds a little mixed up, but actually gardeners are just planning ahead.
Since spring blooming flowers require fall planting, now is the time to sharpen our shovels, plug in the drill or find our favorite bulb planter.
Daffodils and tulips head the list of springtime beauties, but there are many more spring blooming flowers to be planted in the fall.
Three of these flowers to add to your early spring garden are hardy glads, rock garden iris and drumstick allium.
All of us are familiar with the stately gladiolus, sometimes called “funeral flowers”, but communis ssp. byzantinus, a/k/a “Hardy Glad” is the wild form of the more formal glad sent to comfort mourners.
One of the best features of this flower is the fact that it does not have to be dug and stored every fall, as do the more familiar glads.
These hardy glads are being offered this year by our local Thyme to Garden Club at the 13th annual Bulb Sale in October.
The Henson’s from Iuka give high praise for this brilliant red-violet flower, which they have grown for several years. It makes a lovely cut flower, and blooms at about 20” in the earliest summer.
Rock Garden Iris:
Imagine strolling through your garden on a late winter day, and seeing perfect little 4” tall iris blooming – maybe in your rock garden, along the front of a border, at the edge of the woodland or even in a patio container. A sure promise of spring!
This is another bulb to plant in the fall, and is listed on the Thyme to Garden upcoming Bulb Sale.
Rock Garden Iris (Iris reticulata) prefer full sun and good drainage.
Just remember to plant them up close, or they could come and go before you have even ventured out into the very early spring.
The third suggestion for a springtime flower, in addition to daffodils and tulips, is Drumstick Allium or Ornamental Onion.
Egg-shaped flowers start as tight green buds on top of sturdy stems, then turn reddish purple.
They are a tall (2’ to 3’) eye-catching accent, adding sizzle to your garden.
Drumstick Allium is best planted en masse, then naturalizes easily.
Since it is in the onion family, it is deer and rodent resistant.
Plant in full sun and it requires good drainage, as do most plants.
This Allium is a “historic” from the 16th century. By the way, it looks great planted along with daylilies and true lilies.
Thyme To Garden Bulb Sale:
Our local garden club’s Bulb Sale is October 21 from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 P.M. at three locations: Centralia Historical Museum, Borowiaks IGA and Buchheits.
In addition to the three bulbs described above, the sale offers tulips and daffodils, along with the Breast Cancer Research pink bulbs – “The Cure” tulip and “Accent” daffodil.
Advance order forms are available for your convenience.
Master Gardener Plant Swap:
Don’t forget the Plant Swap on September 30, 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 P.M. at the Nashville Library during the Fall Fest.
Bring a plant, take home a plant