The Survival of Southern Bulbs

I honestly can’t believe it….

This lovely little lady has beat all the odds,, and has finally made her appearance known. It has seven long months since I have seen any sign of life.. Normally, I am not one to yell and scream at nature…especially Winter temperatures. In the South, we welcome a change from the year-round Summer weather. I learned a long time ago that nature is as nature does. But…. let me just say this….there were a few choice words spoken earlier this year during the ice freeze from h#@l. A few days prior to the week-long layer of ice and snow, I had told myself I needed to mulch the delicate dwarf Crinum. I had lost all but four bulbs about ten years ago to a freeze, and I was bound and determined to never let that happen again.

But yet, there I was….standing on a thick layer of ice, looking hopelessly at the ground where the bulbs were dormant.

I was hopeful, but not too hopeful.

Spring came and went. No signs of life. Then early Summer, and FINALLY, the welcoming sight of foliage. I was thrilled!!!!! Southern bulbs, like this lovely Crinum, are equipped to survive just about anything. A small little once-in-a-lifetime ice storn won’t slow Southern Heirloom Bulbs down one bit!!

This particular Dwarf Crinum I received many moons ago from a fellow gardener. He had dug these unknown flower bulbs up from his ranch. I’m still hunting the official name. Casually, I call them Dwarf Crinum, but they really need a much prettier, more whimsical name like Phoebe.

Crinum bloom throughout the hot summer months when deeply watered, or receive an unexpected rainfall. One thing I love about this bulb is it’s surprise factor. One never knows how many blooms the stem will produce. I’ve seen single blooms up to quadruple flowers off a single stem. The delicate pure white petals rarely stay open for more than a day without getting parched from the sun. These beautiful flowers keep my eyes glued every morning to my gardens to see which flowers are blooming. In fact, these bulbs are the flowers that taught me how to observe my gardens each new day, creating the word “survey”….which my family lovingly use to describe my early morning wanderings.

After the flood, I put these beloved bulbs in a garden that receives dappled sunlight. I *might* actually move them to a different home. I kinda think the bulbs would enjoy a tad more sunlight in their current location. I move bulbs like other people move furniture, so moving them again is normal for me. Today I actually dug up about twenty Crinum, and replanted them by the potting shed. I’m trying to simplify and organize….two words that are a struggle for me and my gardens. I’m more of a “busy with a hint of chaos” kind of gardener. There are always new, unfinished projects lurking around the corner. I think that’s why I had seven different compost piles created throughout the four lots. I knew I’d never walk the mountain of clippings all the way to the back part of the gardens. Seriously, I would never be that organized . Now, when I spontaneously dig up a bunch of Crinum, move the Iris and weed the new bed, I have an official compost pile within an arm’s reach.

Genius.

I might just get organized after all. Next, the music library will be completely organized and in alphabetical order. Doubtful, but it could happen one day!

Tomorrow is the Garden Project Day. The guys will be disassembling another garden bed that irritated me. The bermuda grass won, so I retreated. I’m digging up some bulbs for a few orders and I’m going to water my beautiful flower survivor, the Dwarf Crinum. Maybe I will get a bloom soon. One never knows. 🙂

Happy Gardening, my friends!