SPRING 2018 TULIP & DAFFODIL TRIALS
I’ve been planting tulips and daffodil bulbs in my Marin County trial garden every December for almost twelve years. The plants come into flower in the months of February through April, a time when temperatures have the potential to climb into the 70s and low 80s; but these are also Northern California’s rainy months, and at times, like the past week, means we also experience occasional hail and gale force winds.
NO MIRACLE MARCH – BUT WELCOME!
Record-breaking storms last year ended the state’s historic five-year drought, but scorching, dry weather — including the hottest opening day in World Series history, 103 degrees in Los Angeles on Oct. 24 — vaporized a lot of the gains. Dry conditions from December through February pushed nearly half of the state back into at least moderate drought conditions, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.
DROUGHT SOLUTION FOR GROWERS
Bulbs are an excellent choice in the garden of the future, and with their natural moisture storing structure, most bulbs tend to be more drought resistant than plants without this adaptation. In our record-breaking California drought, with little precipitation and night temperatures noticeably higher than other parts of the country, landscapers and gardeners must change what we plant, but also when we plant, and how deeply we dig.
SPRING 2017 TULIP & DAFFODIL TRIALS
Planted in cool and mostly dry conditions during the first week of December, I ambitiously chose to double the number of bulbs in my garden. I planted 900 tulips, 175 daffodils and 100 muscari or grape hyacinth. Happily, this year’s garden surpassed my expectations with earliness and days of color, despite warm March temperatures.
The following outdoor water conservation requirements apply to most of us in the industry. Violations are viewed as either a civil or criminal infraction punishable by a fine of $500 per day, and may result in the installment of a ‘flow restrictor’ or a shut off of the water source.
NEW – PRIMROSE
Edible: Makes a wonderfully spicy and colorful adornment to your favorite winter/spring salad. Scientific Name: Primula acaulis | Hardiness Degree : 32°F (0.0°C) | Blooming Season: Early Spring, Winter | Plant Habit: Mounded Spacing : 5 – 9″ | Height: 5 – 6″ (13 – 15cm) Width: 5 – 7″ (13 – 18cm) | Exposure: Partial Sun