Stillwater News Press

Garden

January 7, 2012

In the Garden 01-08-12

One of the best bulbs for naturalizing is known by a number of different names. I recognized it by the traditional bell shaped flowers in a looser, nodding cluster than the classic tight spikes of Hyacinth orientalis.

As botanists shuffled and changed this flower from the genus Scilla to Endymion, I was unsure of the correct Latin name. This is probably unimportant to most readers, but I was taught old school; common names change with regions and without the Latin, proper identification was impossible.

Today, I think the industry has settled on Hyacinthoides to classify wood hyacinth, squill, Spanish or English bluebells. Subtle differences are evident between the Spanish (H. hispanica) and English (H. non-scripta), but planted together, they cross-breed.

If you are shopping for these bulbs, the Spanish tolerates more heat and it is said therefore to be better suited to Oklahoma and parts south. However, H. hispanica lacks the fragrance of the English species, and that is a primary attraction to those like me who like to cut a bouquet to perfume a room.

In late spring, temperatures in Stillwater are usually still moderate enough to plant the English variety, I believe. Remember a bulb’s culture; after it blooms, foliage remains for only six to eight weeks, feeding the bulb for the succeeding spring. With an occasional watering and annual application of phosphorus, either species should have time to gather and store energy and enter into summer dormancy before our temperatures really soar.

Though marketed as bulbs, wood hyacinths have a proclivity to reseed; this is what makes them an excellent choice for naturalizing. Plant the bulbs 3-4 inches deep and 6 inches apart under deciduous trees or in open spaces in dappled sun. (A winter mowing will eliminate dead clumpy grasses that may detract if not obscure your spring flower display.)

It is their ability to spread with little encouragement that brings many gardeners to plant Hyacinthoides. For this reason I strongly urge you to avoid planting bulbs in mixed borders or perennial beds. Every plant has a right place, and this one needs to be in a spot that is not pampered or it will become a weed.

In drifts, bluebells do not need frequent division. As the stand establishes itself you may like to share some of your jewels with friends. In this case, dig and divide in fall. Some people suffer contact dermatitis from handling the bulbs, so be sure to wear gloves when dividing.

LeeAnn Barton, Stillwater, can be emailed at leeannbarton@sbcglobal.net.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Garden
  • Farmers Market 07-31-14

    The Stillwater Farmers Market is open every Monday at Stillwater Medical Center from 2-5:30 p.m. and every Wednesday and Saturday in Strickland Park from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    What’s at the market this week?

    July 30, 2014

  • In the Garden 07-27-14

    Quercus is the Latin name for oak. It is a quirky name; some believe its roots came from the Celtic word for “fine tree.” Anyone familiar with oaks knows they are indeed fine trees.

    July 26, 2014

  • Farmers Market

    The Stillwater Farmers Market is open every Monday at Stillwater Medical Center from 2-5:30 p.m. and every Wednesday and Saturday in Strickland Park at the corner of Hall of Fame Avenue and Main Street from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    What’s at market this week?

    July 23, 2014

  • Grow! 07-20-14

    Roses are a beautiful addition to any garden and landscape. They come in a variety of colors that enhance your yard. However, like other plants, roses are susceptible to disease. One that seems to hit roses the hardest is rose rosette disease caused by the rose rosette virus.

    July 19, 2014

  • Seed to Table 07-20-14

    Weed control is an important part of food production. So, I recently undertook an effort to rid my pastures of a particularly noxious weed.

    July 19, 2014

  • In the Garden 07-20-14

    Mulch is full of purpose. What it lacks in mystery, it makes up in function. Mulch contributes to healthy gardens. No one ponders or debates it, yet many do not take the time to mulch.

    July 19, 2014

  • Farmers Market 07-17-14

    The Stillwater Farmers Market is open every Monday at Stillwater Medical Center from 2-5:30 p.m. and every Wednesday and Saturday in Strickland Park from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

    July 17, 2014

  • Grow! 07-13-14

    If you have no space outdoors for a garden, don’t despair because you can still grow something consumable. Bean sprouts are the easiest and fastest crop to grow.

    July 13, 2014

  • In the Garden 07-13-14

    “Where’s the relief?” That is what I’ve been thinking all week in the garden. I water, wondering if the mist is going to cool or cook the plants. I assumed the last thing anyone would consider this week is planting — anything!

    July 13, 2014

  • Farmers Market 07-10-14

    What’s at market this week?
    Fruits and veggies: Bell peppers, beets, blackberries, cabbage, carrots, collards, cucumbers, eggplant, garlic, green beans, jalapenos, leeks, new potatoes, onions, squash, sweet corn, tomatoes and watermelon
    Baked goods: Biscotti, cakes, cinnamon rolls, cookies, muffins, pies, scones and turnovers

    July 10, 2014

Buy & Share Photos
NewsPress e-Edition
NewsPress Specials
AP Video
Couple Channel Grief Into Soldiers' Retreat WWI Aviation Still Alive at Aerodrome in NY Raw: Rescuers at Taiwan Explosion Scene Raw: Woman Who Faced Death Over Faith in N.H. Clinton Before 9-11: Could Have Killed Bin Laden Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Stocks
NDN Video
Famous Internet Cats Help Big Cause With Viral Video Raw: Obama Gets Hug From Special Olympian Snoop Dogg Narrating Animal Footage Is Perfect Tigers Acquire David Price - @TheBuzzeronFOX Russell Brand Slams Sean Hannity Over Gaza Conflict Segment Chapter Two: Composing for a film in retirement Woman's Dive Goes Terribly Wrong Brian Williams Reports on Daughter Allison Williams' 'Peter Pan' Casting News Did Jimmy Fallon Look Up Heidi Klum's Dress? What Drama? Miranda Kerr Poses Topless Plane crashes in San Diego Costco parking lot Justin Bieber Takes To Instagram To Diss Orlando Bloom You Won't Believe the Celeb Cameos in "Sharknado 2" Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza
Must Read