Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

GARDEN JOBS

Iris Ayes

October 05, 1986|GEORGE HARMON SCOTT and BILL SIDNAM

Bearded iris can still be divided and planted, as can Spuria and Siberian iris. The bulbous Dutch iris should be planted soon; if you wait until December, the bulbs may be too dry. Anyone interested in the many kinds of iris should contact an iris society through the Los Angeles State and County Arboretum or South Coast Botanic Garden.

Buy tulips, and keep them in a place where the temperature is below 50 degrees Fahrenheit but above freezing; the crisper of a refrigerator is ideal. They should be planted about Thanksgiving or later. Most tulips come from areas in the Near East, where the growing season may be only two to three months. Between the very cold winter and the very hot summer, the bulbs must act quickly. Here if planted too early, while the soil is still warm, they start to grow. As the weather gets colder, they may give up their bloom in an attempt to go dormant. Hyacinths and crocus are a bit the same way.

Shallots thrive in almost any soil and need very little care. They are sometimes available at local nurseries, most mail-order seed companies stock them, or you can plant the bulbs found in the produce section. Plant them one inch deep and two inches apart in a sunny area; they'll be ready to harvest when the tops turn brown and topple over. Pull the bulbs, and, keeping the tops on, let them dry in the sun for one week. Then remove the tops and store the bulbs in a dry area; they'll keep for up to a year. Leave a few bulbs in the ground to multiply. From a fall planting, this usually occurs in early spring.

Elephant garlic produces huge bulbs with cloves that have a milder flavor than other garlic types. It is quite expensive at specialty produce markets, yet it is simple to grow in the garden or in a container. October is the time to plant it here, and cloves should be available in local nurseries this month.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|