I love surprises especially the kind that are delivered by the post office in a box 😃.
This week, I received one such mystery box. What made this package a surprise was not so much the receiving part (I knew it was coming at some point as I had ordered it waaaaaay back in July) but rather, what was inside. I ordered so long ago, I completely forgot what I had ordered.
I could have looked at my order online at any point in the past few months...but I didn't. Why? Because I thought it would be more fun to surprise myself with what was in the box come the fall.
So excited to see what goodies are in here!
Last year, however, I was at a checkout in late summer and saw a sale bin of Crocus bulbs. Being that I can't resist a good sale, especially when it comes to plants, I dove in and grabbed a bunch of bags. Of course, once I had them in hand, they had to go into the ground, regardless of how busy I was with other things.
When spring arrived, these tiny crocuses greeted me with their cheery colours.
|Tiny but cheery sign that winter is almost over...|
I ordered 11 different bulbs in all. Now, in order to get a truly grand show in the bulb department, you need a LOT of bulbs but I decided to stick with one package each. Not only does this keep the cost down (it adds up quickly!), but I would also like to see how they do in the garden. I'm sure there will be some that I love and end up purchasing more of, while I'll be happy with a "single serving" of others.
So here is the low-down on what was in the box...
Crocus chrys. 'Prins Claus' and Anemone blanda
Anemone blanda - A mix of white and blue anemone that stand 4-6" tall; blooms in early May.
|Scilla siberica species and 'Alba'|
|Puschkinia var. Libanotica (aka Striped Squill) and Iris Reticulata 'Joyce'|
Iris Reticulata Joyce - Small blue flowers and only 6" tall; blooms in early-mid April
|Narcissus 'Blushing Lady' and 'Pueblo'|
Narcissus 'Pueblo' - Bright white blooms on 10" stems; blooms in late April/early May.
|Narcissus 'Stainless' and Tulip 'Angelique'|
Tulip 'Angelique' - My favourite! A double with pale pink blooms & 18" tall; blooms mid-late May.
|Tulips 'World Friendship' and 'Honky Tonk'|
Tulip 'Honky Tonk' - Short (only 8" tall), pale yellow petals with pinkish streak; blooms in Early May.
|Hyacinth 'Carnegie Mix' and bonus gift of Muscari armeniacum|
A free gift with my order: Muscari armeniacum (**) - Blue grape hyacinth that stands 4-8" tall; blooms mid-late May.
** The Scilla Quandry
I always do my research when purchasing a new-to-me plant so I'm not sure what happened in this case but I have since realized that Scilla siberica may be invasive. Many articles don't mention the possibility of invasiveness at all (like THIS one) while others indicate that it's just fine if you don't plant it near a natural woodland (see this Iowa State University article). Even though Siberian squill does go dormant after flowering, the Minnesota Wildflowers site urges people not to plant it in their landscape at all. They contend that Siberian squill tends to escape into the wild & choke out native ephemerals.
I would rather err on the side of caution in this case, so I've decided to plant these in pots. Puschkinia (Striped squill) is related to Scilla siberica but, while there are numerous references about Siberian squill being invasive, I was hard pressed to find the same warnings about Striped Squill. It is supposed to naturalize, but I've seen several comments where folks specifically say that they do not consider it aggressive (or 'spready') in the same manner as Siberian squill. I've decided to plant it in the garden...and then proceed to cross my fingers that I don't regret it!
And since I'm on the topic of aggressive spreaders, unfortunately, the "free gift" that I received with my bulb order would fall into that category. There are muscari cultivars that are not aggressive, but this is not one of them. So unfortunately, this one will not end up in the garden, but will go into a pot, just like the Siberian squill. Do you have any of these in your garden? If so, I would love to know if you consider them a friend or foe in the comments below.
This coming week, I'll be planting these into the ground (or in pots). It's going to be a colourful spring next year....