Bulbs do best in well-drained soil enriched with organic matter such as well-rotted compost. They need a spot that’s sunny in winter and spring but tolerate increasing shade after flowering. Cover with a 5cm layer of loose mulch after planting to keep the soil cool and weed free.
To protect emerging shoots and flower buds against snails and slugs, use an iron-based snail bait or check and remove regularly. Most emerging bulbs also benefit from an application of high-potash flowering fertiliser as they begin to grow, and regular watering if it is dry.
For bulbs that are left in the ground to multiply and re-flower the following year, it’s important to nourish the foliage after flowering using pelletised or liquid plant food. Allow the foliage to die back naturally as this is the powerhouse that’s replenishing starches within the bulb and forming the next year’s flower. ©
We are lucky that in most of Australia we can sit comfortably outside at night for much of the year. In the central and northern latitudes, we can enjoy the night garden all year round, and in summer it is often much more pleasant to be in the garden at night, when temperatures drop after a hot day.
We are naturally diurnal (daytime) creatures, and a little light can change how much we enjoy and use our gardens at night. Lighting can dramatically change the garden’s appearance and bring specific plants, elements and features into focus. Candles, torches and temporary electrical lights are cost-effective ways to light up the garden, but they require time and effort to set up. Flicking a handy switch is a lot easier, j Many people use floodlights to light their gardens. While these
If lighting is well designed, your visitors shouldn’t even realise it’s there.