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Bulb Size: 7 / 8Flower Colour: Mixed ColoursFlowering Time: February / MarchPlant Height: 10cm
Planning your autumn crocus bulb planting
Crocus are available in a variety of colours including white, purple, orange, pink, cream and lilac, which allows you to plan colour schemes for beds and borders or just plan for splashes of mixed colour where it will be most appreciated.
Bulbs are available for planting during the autumn months of late August and mid-November and should be planted before the first frosts arrive. Well drained soil is advisable because wet areas could lead to the bulbs rotting during the winter months.
You should bear in mind that the standard crocus will only reach about 10cm in height, so they should be planted in areas where they can be seen and admired. Also, because the bulbs are quite small they should not be planted too deeply. They can be planted in small or large groups, the latter being the best choice for stunning spring displays. When planning the number of bulbs you will need, you should work on planting at 7cm – 10cm apart for groups of 10-15 or 100 – 130 bulbs per square metre for large swathes such as in grassland.
Ground preparation and crocus bulb planting
If planting in grassland or beneath trees, ensure the soil is not a heavy clay type as this could be prone to flooding. Well drained soil is best and this can be further improved by the addition of compost or leaf mould. Plant the small bulbs about 7cm deep using a trowel or dibber and ensure the pointed end of the bulb faces upwards. Crocus are great for naturalising and will spread far and wide if left to their own devices. However, if naturalising is the long-term plan then the plants will benefit from the addition of a general fertiliser applied liberally after flowering.
If the bulbs are to be naturalised in grassland then it’s best to wait until the plants have died back before cutting or mowing these areas. For pots, planters and window boxes, a soil based compost is preferable to plain peat as the plants need to stabilise their root system for support. If peat based compost is the only option then it is recommended to plant them deeper at 10cm. Crocus bulbs represent excellent value as they can be lifted, dried and re-planted, although plants that are treated this way may produce smaller flowers. In general these hardy little plants will provide much appreciated spring colour with very little after-care and attention.
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