Cheyenne Botanic Gardens News and Events

Storing summer bulbs?

Summer bulbs like dahlias, begonias, gladiolas and cannas provide a beautiful show of blooms. Unfortunately these bulbs do not survive the winter in our climate. So you either need to purchase new bulbs every year or you can overwinter the bulbs inside. Overwintering bulbs can save you a lot of money and provide you with a dazzling array of blooms each summer. If you overwintered your bulbs now is the time to check on them.

The best way to store bulbs in the winter is in a bag filled with slightly moistened play sand in a plastic lined cardboard box. Place the bag in a dark place that is also the coldest spot in your house, but not in the freezer or refrigerator. If you have done this. Now is a perfect time to check the bulbs for any rot or excessive dryness. It might be a good idea to re-moisten the sand. The bulbs can be planted out most anytime in Early to mid-May or for faster growth, you can pot them up in mid April and grow them in an indoor windowsill, then place outside after the last frost.

Dahlia bulbs often produce many new side tubers each year and can be divided up into individual tubers if you are interested in multiplying your collection. Before you divide tubers, be sure you get a bud or eye on each tuber. Each eye becomes next year’s main shoot of the plant. New plants make great gifts!