Summer is officially upon us in the UK and the garden is ready for pops of colourful flowers. If you’re seeking a breathtaking display, consider adding summer bulbs to your garden. Options include iris, gladioli, astilbes, peonies, hostas and echinacea, which bring a kaleidoscope of hues, textures and fragrances to your outdoor space. This year we’ve planted out the varieties listed above, which we got from Dutch Grown, that we’ve grown on from bulbs. Watch our latest vlog to see us plant them and we share some facts about each variety below to inspire your green thumb.
Iris: Known for their striking blooms and delicate petals, irises are an exceptional addition to any garden. These perennials come in a myriad of colours, including purple, white, yellow, and blue. The name “Iris” originates from the Greek goddess of the rainbow, symbolising the diverse range of colours found in the species.
Gladioli: Tall and elegant, gladioli add a touch of grandeur to gardens. With their vibrant, upright flowers, they make a statement in any floral arrangement. Interestingly, the name “gladiolus” is derived from the Latin word for “sword,” referencing their sword-shaped leaves. Gladioli symbolise strength and moral integrity.
Astilbes: Astilbes are the graceful ballerinas of the flower world, known for their feathery plumes in shades of pink, red, purple, and white. These shade-loving perennials thrive in moist soil and provide a delightful contrast when paired with dark-leaved plants. Astilbes are native to Asia and were introduced to Europe in the 19th century.
Peonies: With their captivating scent and lavish blooms, peonies are a favorite among garden enthusiasts. These romantic flowers come in a wide range of colours, from delicate pinks to vibrant reds. Peonies are native to Asia, and in Chinese culture, they symbolise wealth, honour and prosperity.
Hostas: Hostas are renowned for their lush foliage, which ranges from variegated greens to striking blues. These shade-loving perennials are perfect for adding texture and depth to your garden. Hostas are edible, and their young shoots are considered a delicacy in some Asian cuisines.
Echinacea: Also known as coneflowers, echinacea blooms bring a burst of color to any garden. Their daisy-like flowers come in shades of pink, purple, and white, attracting butterflies and bees with their abundant nectar. Echinacea plants have been used in traditional Native American medicine for their potential immune-boosting properties.
Now that you’re acquainted with these summer bulbs, here are some general planting tips to ensure a successful garden.
Choose the right location: Most of these bulbs prefer well-drained soil and adequate sunlight. However, astilbes and hostas thrive in shady spots.
Timing matters: Plant bulbs in the spring, allowing them enough time to establish before the summer heat arrives.
Soil preparation: Ensure the soil is loose, well-draining, and enriched with organic matter to promote healthy growth.
Planting depth: Follow specific guidelines for each variety, as planting depths can vary. As a general rule, most bulbs should be planted two to three times deeper than their height.
Watering and maintenance: Regular watering is crucial, especially during dry spells. Mulching around the plants helps retain moisture and suppresses weeds.
By incorporating summer bulbs such as iris, gladioli, astilbes, peonies, hostas, and echinacea into your garden, you can transform it into a vibrant tapestry of colors, fragrances, and textures. These stunning varieties offer not only visual appeal but also interesting stories and traditions from around the world. So, unleash your creativity, and let these summer bulbs paint your garden with nature’s most alluring hues.