A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 2 – Crocus

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“Towards the Sun” – Spring 2013 – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA

“A Plant a Day till Spring” will highlight one plant a day, starting on the winter solstice (December 21, 2013)… And ending on the vernal equinox (March 20, 2014)… If all goes to plan I will be starting with old Snowdrop photos from 2013… And ending with new photos of Snowdrops in 2014…

Crocus is a genus of flowering plants in the Iris family… They are typically very early blooming flowers… Though autumn blooming varieties exist… They are perennials that grow from corms… The name of the genus is derived from the Greek language and translates to “Saffron”… A variety of crocus is in fact the source of this spice…

Crocus flowers and leaves are protected from frost by a waxy cuticle… In areas where snow and frost occasionally occur in the early spring, it is not uncommon to see early flowering crocuses blooming through the snow…

Some crocuses seed prolifically and are ideal for naturalizing… They can become invasive if not kept in check… Crocus look stellar when naturalized in a lawn… It is important to hold off mowing till a few weeks after they bloom… The simplest way I have found to accomplish this is to literally peal sections of sod back with a flat spade… Place your crocus bulbs how you like… And carefully replace the sod over top…

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“Cluster of Crocus” – Spring 2013 – Whitney Avenue – Wilkinsburg, PA

Crocus are extremely easy to propagate…  Although tolerant of overcrowding… They will lose some vigor over time… The process starts by digging up the existing Crocus corms after they die back and remove the smaller corms that have grown around the base… If the original corm is still producing foliage and flowers… Put it back in the ground… But if the corm is spent… Remove it leaving a few of the smaller corms to replace it… The recovered corms can now be planted wherever you decide to put them…

Newly planted Crocus corms are a favorite of squirrels, mice and voles… These pests will quickly dig them up for food… You can discourage these pests by placing a cage of chicken wire over your new planting… I find that once established the pests tend to leave them alone… If you can get your corms through two seasons of growth… And learn to successfully divide them… You will have more than you will ever know what to do with…

plant Petunias and question everything – chriscondello

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5 thoughts on “A Plant A Day Till Spring – Day 2 – Crocus

  1. narf77 says:

    There is always something out there ready to eat whatever you are about to plant…here its possums and wallabies. The wallabies eat everything from the ground up to about a metre high and the possums take it from there and the curious thing is that you never know what is going to take their fancy! I love crocuses. I only discovered them when we moved from hot Western Australia (my home state) to Tasmania where the winters are cold enough to do justice to a spring bulb showing. Glad to see that some of them are prolific and it might be time to get hold of some for Serendipity Farm. Looking forward to tomorrows plant 🙂

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  2. Caging the bulbs! That’s a GREAT idea!
    Did you try or are you just going to do it?
    I think a rat could eat them chewing up through the wires, so they should have like a coat of soil inside the cage….

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    • C.Condello says:

      I have caged in the past… Mostly tulips and what I consider “high value” bulbs… I always do it with the bulbs that I am propagating myself…

      You have no idea how nice it is to hear someone else has issues with rats in their neighborhood… You are absolutely correct… A rat will chew through anything… From personal experience the rats don’t mess with my gardens unless there is no garbage available to eat… Which in a neighborhood like mine that is not really a problem…

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  3. Thank you for sharing, I love spring bulbs, especially Crocus.

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