Spring flowering bulbs in the garden are a wonderful element of landscape design. But what if you do not have a plot, there is only a small apartment?
A simple and elegant way out of this situation is to plant bulbs on the balcony.
In spring, your balcony or loggia will attract the eye with unique and elegant compositions.
All kinds of shades and aromas of bulbs in pots and containers will become permanent residents of your home.
will create a warm and cozy atmosphere for many months.
The choice of bulbs for planting on the balcony
For growing on balconies and loggias, choose well-known types and varieties of bulbous.
The main criteria for choosing bulbous:
- Cold resistance;
- Ease of maintenance;
- The duration of flowering;
- The presence of the aroma.
Most often, crocuses and hyacinths are chosen for growing on the balcony, which lend themselves well to distillation.
In addition, popular types for landing in containers in an apartment are:
- Tulips (early terry, Greig, Kaufman, Foster, Triumph, botanical);
- Daffodils (miniature, jonquillium, cyclamen-like, tazceta, terry);
- Fritillaries (Mikhailovsky, Chess, Assyrian);
- White flowers;
- Chionodox (Lucilii and Forbesa);
- Spills (Siberian and two-leaved);
- Irises are reticulated;
When to plant bulbs for a balcony?
Bulbous, which cannot winter on the balcony, exotic species of tropical origin should be planted in April-May.
Bulbs that tolerate wintering are planted during the fall.
The timing of the planting of overwintering bulbs depends both on the species and on whether the balcony is closed or open.
If the balcony is open, then all planted bulbs must undergo adaptation and take root. From the end of September to the end of November, plant crocuses, muscari, small bulbs, such as chionodoxes, on open balconies. From late October to early December – tulips, daffodils, hyacinths.
For closed balconies, start planting all bulbs from mid-October to early December. In this case, you can plant all crops at the same time.
Highlights when planting bulbs on the balcony
- The depth of planting the bulbs is 3 heights of the bulb itself, if the bulbs are very large, then 2 heights.
- Don’t plant the bulbs too tightly, as if placed too tightly, their roots will interfere with each other. There will also be less intense flowering. For crocuses, muscari, small-flowered grouse, the optimal distance between the bulbs is about 5 cm, and between tulips – up to 10 cm.
- For planting, use light soil with good air and water permeability, with a loose structure. It must be nutritious. Ideally, you can use a mixture of garden soil, compost, peat and fine river sand in equal proportions. In addition, biohumus can be added to the mixture.
- Choose a plastic container or a thick-walled ceramic pot for planting. In addition, lay a layer of drainage about 5 cm high on the bottom of the pot. It will prevent excessive moisture in the substrate.
- Choose varieties of bulbs that will look good in the composition.
- For proper rooting, ensure that the substrate is constantly lightly moist.
You can also plant several types of bulbs in one container.
Bulbs are planted in several tiers.
At the same time, the tallest and most powerful plants are planted on a lower tier, and small ones on the upper tier.
The distance between the bulbs in tiers should be different.
Bulbs of daffodils and tulips are placed on the lowest tier. It is followed by a tier of hyacinths, hyacinthoides, muscari. On the upper tier, plant bulbs of crocuses, blueberries, pushkinia and other small bulbs.
Bulb wintering on the balcony
In winter, even the most hardy crops need to be protected from the cold. On closed and open balconies, protection is fundamentally different.
On open balconies, containers with planted bulbs are placed in boxes on foam plates or on a piece of chipboard. Further, the space of the box is filled with sawdust, newsprint.
This is the so-called air-dry method.
Then the box is covered with a perforated polyethylene film or burlap.
In this form, bulbs can be safely moved to the place you need in the apartment. In addition, they will no longer be afraid of any frost.
On closed balconies, bulbs are placed on a foam stand to isolate them as much as possible from heat loss.
Then continue to water until mid-December, so that the soil does not dry out.
After that, wrap the container in several layers with agrofibre, film or burlap.
Bulb preparation for flowering
In order for the planted bulbs to bloom normally after 1-2 months of wintering, they need to be gradually opened.
At the end of February, or in cold weather at the beginning of March, remove layers of shelter one by one. However, be aware of rising temperatures and sunny weather.
If the temperature drops, cover them again.
After the shelter is completely removed and the onset of stable warm weather, start watering the containers, gradually increasing the intensity.
Also, fertilize first with diluted nitrogen, and before flowering with potash and phosphorus fertilizers.
Depending on the type of bulbous, in mid-April-early May, you will get intense flowering.
As a result, containers with bulbs will delight you with many flowers and a delicate aroma for a whole month. In addition, they will help you create a bright accent on the balcony.
Caring for bulbs after flowering
As soon as flowering in the container is over, stop watering and fertilizing. After the leaves turn yellow and die, select the bulbs from the ground.
Carefully inspect the bulbs, discard dry, damaged or fungus-infected bulbs, clean them of old scales and earth.
Dry them on newspaper for a week.
Then store the bulbs in a dark place with a temperature of 15-16 degrees Celsius. In the fall, at the same time as the previous time, plant them in a container or in a flower bed.
Read also Caring for Tulips Year Round.