Leucocoryne: (Zones 1,2,3,4) - Also see general bulb growing instructions

Long lasting pretty cut flower, native to Chile. Plant 5cm deep and 5cm apart and add a good handful of blood and bone or rich compost. Keep moist during growth period. They will naturalise but if dug from the ground allow the bulbs to dry in a frost-free dry area for a few days, then store in paper bags.

Leucojum: (Zones 1,2,3,4) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

These are fantastic naturalisers and will spread on their own. They are early flowering and look great around the base of deciduous trees and the edges of lawns. Plant 10cm apart and 10cm deep. They are much like daffodils and these instructions can be followed.

Lewisia: (Zones 1,2)

Lewsisia are native to mountain crevices in Oregon and Northern California.  The evergreen leaves don't like to be wet and therefore like to be watered from below where they grow a large tap root.  Lewisia grow well in rock crevices in a wall and do very well in "water well" pots (with water coming from below).  They can be grown in garden beds with grit or stones beneath the rosette.  They require very little feeding and enjoy cold winters and near full sun.  Peak flowering time is in November.

Lilium: (Zones 1,2,3,4)

Lilies are excellent growers for the Australian climate.  There are many types and forms of lilies which are relatively easy to grow and hugely rewarding.  Plant your lily bulbs on arrival in well drained soil with a pH of 5.5-6.5.  Position them in a half sun/half shade location.  Lilies are not heavy feeders, but fertilise with blood and bone or general purpose fertiliser at planting and then apply applications of high nitrogen fertiliser soon after emergence. Plant 10-15cm deep and 20-40cm apart. Liliums do not like too much frost so keep them sheltered. Give them regular watering during the summer especially before flowering.  Mulching will help to keep their roots cool.  Crowding can lead to fungus outbreaks on the leaves.  Allow air movement around the plants and divide clumps after a few years.  The bulb will go dormant in winter and the foliage can be cut back.  You can lift when the stem is dead and can be easily pulled out from the bulb, around March - July but note that they do not like to be out of the ground for long.  Roots are to stay attached to the bulb, and kept moist when out of the ground.  These bulbs will naturalise to form clumps over a few years, so give them room to multiply.  Lilies are great in pots, plant in large pots to reduce the chance of blowing over in the wind.  You will have to watch the watering much more closely in a pot.  It is best to use a specific bulb potting mix.

- Nepalense Lilium: (Zone 1,2)

Nepalense like to be near dry in the winter and very cold.  They are stononiferous, meaning it roves underground creating bulbs on runners and popping up where it is not expected, sometimes out of the drain hole if planted in a pot.  They dislike being wet in autumn and winter.   They can be wintered in just damp peat in the fridge.  They require a cool climate.

- Martagon Lilium: (Zone 1,2)

These very special types of lilies require just a little extra care.  They require finding or constructing very well draining soil although they will need to be kept moist.  They prefer part sun, but require a cool to cold environment.  Martagons are not renowned for their ease of transplanting and may take two growing seasons to give you the promised display.  Follow the general lilium planting instructions above but plant martagons a bit deeper to help escape warm weather.

Lilium Growing Tips

1. Get the position right:

  • a.Shade: Australia has a lot of light and increasingly hotIn our climate, lilies generally appreciate some shade, especially the roots.
  • b.Air circulation: Planting the bulbs in areas with good air movement will substantially reduce the risk of fungal diseases in your foliage

2. Get the soil right:

  • a.pH – generally lilies like a pH around 6.Orientals like it a bit more acid while martagons grow best at pH 7. (Refer to the opposite page)
  • b.Drainage isA lot of lilies are lost due to waterlogging in wet or over-watered situations, even in good soils

3. Look after the feeder roots:

  • a.Lilies obtain most of their nutrition and water from feeder roots that emerge from the stem just above the bulb a couple of weeks afterThese are quite shallow and easily dry out.
  • b.Mulching is a great way to keep your lily roots cool and moist, increasing vigour and reducing the need to water so frequently

4. Don’t forget to water:

  • a.Lilies grow through the summer and are winter dormant so, while they are quite tough, they do need regular watering for good performance.
  • b.Watering is especially important from emergence to flowering

5. End of season maintenance:

  • a.Do not lift the bulbs unless they are too crowded or you want to move them.
  • b.Cleaning up crop debris will reduce your disease risk nextEither pull or cut the old stalks after the crop has died back.
Lily of the Valley: (Zones 1,2,3) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

These Convallaria are so pretty and fragrant, a real delight to the senses. They enjoy some shade and can make a lovely show in a rockery or pot. These plants need part to full shade and enjoy moist soils. Plant these rhizomes 5cm deep and 5-10cm apart. Fertilise with blood and bone or general purpose fertiliser at planting and then top-dress lightly in spring. They can be planted with ferns or Dicentra.

Lobelia (Zones 1,2,3)

These tall perennials make an attractive and unusual border plant if you have room. Plant in full sun, in moist well-drained soil, with some added fertiliser. They are frost tolerant. Planting depth is the same as in pot supplied and can be planted 50-60cm apart.

Lupins:(Zones 1,2,3)

Lupins enjoy a sunny, well drained position with wet winters and hot summers are prefered. The plant establishes a tap root, but is planted as small seedling before the tap root develops.  Remove spent flower heads if you wish to restrict plant spread. Good for between shrubs and in borders. Will naturalise. Protect from slugs and snails. Planting depth is the same as in pot supplied and can be planted 50-60cm apart.

Moraea Peacock Iris (Zones 1,2,3) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

Plant these bulbs 8-10cm apart and 5-8cm deep in moderately rich, well drained soil. Plant in full sun to semi-shade.  Water in and keep well watered during growing period, but relatively dry during their summer dormant period.  They are quite hardy and frost tolerant and prefer a cooler climate.

Muscari: (Zones 1,2,3) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

Muscari are great naturalisers and can be left down for several years before they need to be separated. Best when grown in cooler climates. They can be planted in full sun to part shade and look good under deciduous trees. Plant about 5cm deep and 5-8cm apart. Fertilise with a little blood and bone after flowering. Flower late winter through spring.

Narcissus (Daffodils): (Zones 1,2,3) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

Narcissus are excellent naturalisers and can be enjoyed in all climates except subtropical. They are very hardy and don’t mind being a little moist in their dormant period. In warmer areas, deep planting, mulching or shade in summer will protect them in the ground. Flowers are very long lasting. Fertilise with blood and bone at planting in March – June, flowers through summer. Plant 15cm deep and 15cm apart.

Ornithogalum: (Zones 1,2,3,4) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

These bulbs are great for naturalising and indeed prefer being left in the ground. Flowers are very long lasting. Fertilise with blood and bone at planting in March - June. Chincherinchee is a strong grower in some environments. Plant 7cm deep and 15cm apart. Flowers in the late spring to early Summer.

Papaver: (Zones 1,2)

Plant papaver in a full sun to part shade location in moist well draining soil. They enjoy compost and mulch on planting and a soil pH 6+.

Peony - Herbaceous: (Zones 1,2)

Herbaceous peonies come in a variety of forms, singles, doubles and semi-doubles and are often quite fragrant.  These lovely shrubs can grow to around 1 metre high and will normally take a few years to establish and flower well.  They grow from buds on a tuberous root and should be planted on arrival. Blood and bone or compost can also be mixed with the soil at planting.  They will benefit from a soil pH which is neutral (7.0) or at the most, only slightly acidic.  Plant in a full sun to half shade location with the top of the shoots maximum 5cm deep and approx. 1 metre apart.  Peonies are very hard to grow if you don't have a cold winter.  Plant in cold exposed locations with no winter mulch. If the peony is struggling to get established in it’s first year you can break off the buds to put more energy pack into the plant. Peonies are frost tolerant and are heavy feeders and best results will come with some care.  General purpose fertiliser should be applied during early spring and late autumn.   Peonies don't like to be disturbed, but during their dormant months (winter) you can lift and divide a large matt of roots.  Keep moist and cool after lifting. To prevent botrytis returning year on year cut stems back in autumn to 10cm above the ground.  Cut back before leaves drop to ground to prevent botrytis entering the crown.  They like regular watering during summer.  Peonies can grow in pots but it is more difficult, they need winter cooling and heavy fertilisation to make them flourish.

Phlox Paniculata: (Zones 1,2,3,4)

Phlox Paniculata thrive in full sun and provide months of summer colour.  Plant on arrival in well drained soil with a pH around 4.5-7 with some blood and bone, or compost dug into the soil.  Plant with the shoots just on the surface and approx. 50cm apart.  They are frost tolerant and it is best to keep the water up to them in sandy soils to keep the flowers coming.  They are better off in the ground than in a pot.  They can be divided by removing a piece of the crown during dormancy and placing it in another location.  Lift and divide when required - every few years or so.

Pleione Orchids: (Zones 1,2)

They enjoy a cool environment and are grown in light shade to full shade.  The mix should be a combination of compost, leaf mulch or potting mix with composted chicken manure or dynamic lifter.  Plant the pseudo bulb emerging from the surface in a deep pot (12cm+) with more potting mix or leaf mulch.  Flowers will emerge in spring followed by leaves. Water more consistently when leaves are emerging and over the summer months.  They are strong feeders and liquid fertilisers are recommended over the growing season, especially ones high in potash.  Granular fertilisers are not recommended as they can burn the pseudo bulbs on contact.

Pulsatilla: (Zones 1,2,3)

Pulsatilla are great in your rock garden.  Growing to approx 25-30cm in height, they like a ful part sun location. Plant in reasonably well drained soil and keep moist in a dry summer.  They are frost tolerant and drought resistant.  Planting depth is the same as in pot supplied and can be planted 50-60cm apart.

Ranunculas: (Zones 1,2,3,4) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

These small tubers can grow throughout Australia. Plant claws down 5-7cm deep and 5-10cm apart any time from late summer to early winter. When the foliage is yellowing off they can be lifted and stored, however new stocks each year give the best display. Flowers early spring.

Salvia: (Zones 1,2,3,4)

This lovely plant can grow to 80cm high and 70cm wide. The mass of flowers and lovely grey green foliage are all fragrant. This is an Australian hybrid therefore tends to be drought hardy after it has become established. Grows in full sun and flowers in summer responding with a second flush if trimmed back. Mulch in winter if heavy frosts are expected. Prune back in spring to prepare for the summer show. Planting depth is the same as in pot supplied and can be planted 50-60cm apart.

Sanguisorba: (Zones 1,2,3,4)

This summer flowering perennial has attractive, deeply divided blue green foliage.It is a compact, slow spreading plant which is deciduous in autumn. Loves full sun or partial shade and is happy in drier areas. Flowers stand on wiry stems 50cm tall. Suggested for borders, between roses and in ornamental grass plantings. Planting depth is the same as in pot supplied and can be planted 50-60cm apart.

Santolina (Zones 1,2,3)

These perennials flower for months and need little care except for a light trim in winter. Useful in borders as low hedging or bedding fill in. They like a hot sunny position, and are drought tolerant and moderately frost tolerant. Planting depth is the same as in pot supplied and can be planted 60-70cm apart.

Saxifraga: (Zones 1,2,3)

Saxifraga is a low moundin g plant, that prefers a full sun to partial shady location.  Ideal between pavers and in a rockery.  Native to Iceland, it makes small cushions and shoots up straight flowers to approx 10cm.  It is drough resistant and frost tolerant.  Likes a well drained soil and a moist environment.

Scilla: (Zones 1,2,3,4) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

Performs best in the cool areas of Australia, as the cold ensures that the stem elongates for elegant blooms. If planting in warmer climates, ensure bulbs spend at least 6 weeks in the crisper. Wonderful in pots, and companion plant with white muscari and violets. Plant March to May, 10cm deep and 10cm apart, flowers late spring.

Sedum: (Zones 1,2,3,4)

Sedum should be planted on arrival.  Choose a place in the garden where they will receive full sun.  Plant crown just below the surface and approx. 50cm apart.  They enjoy some compost dug into the soil on planting and some blood and bone in spring.  They grow to approx. 90cm and are a good cut flower as well as a good potting plant. Dead foliage can be cut back in winter while it is dormant to approx. 10cm above the ground. They are frost tolerant.

Sparaxis: (Zones 1,2,3,4) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

Native to South Africa, they enjoy a warmer spot. Hardy with little water requirement. Can be top dressed with fertiliser after shooting. Plant 5cm deep and 9cm apart and water in well. Will naturalise and dividing is only necessary if crowded.

Tree Peony: (Zones 1,2,3)

Tree peony’s exotic blooms are highly rewarding but require an experienced hand to establish.  Tree peonies require a high pH 6.5-7. Most soils will need amending to achieve the desired pH with Ag lime or dolomite.  Test pH to confirm.  They enjoy at least half a day of sunlight and like to be sheltered from strong winds.  Good drainage is essential.  Their growth habit is similar to the herbaceous peonies or spring bulbs in that they are activated by cold which stimulates the roots.  Fertilise with NPK with high P (phosphorus), K (potash) and low N (nitrogen) plus some Ferrous Sulphate around the base once a month in winter (when they do nearly all their feeding).  In spring they come into leaf and then flower once established.  In year one buds are small and badly formed so are best pinched out (removed).  In summer the plant ceases growth so an established plant requires little water at that time, but may need a little bit in dry patches in the first two years.  Mulch around base.  Potting is possible.  Use a good quality mix and add two or three handfuls of dolomite or Ag lime. Be patient and enjoy your rewards.

Trillium Seedlings: (Zones 1,2)

These rare seedlings should be planted on arrival ready for flowering this spring to early summer.  Plant with the hood just above ground and approx. 15-25cm apart.  They enjoy some compost dug into the soil on planting and some blood and bone in spring.  They will naturalise and die back during winter.  They are frost tolerant and prefer a half sun to full shade location.  You should plant in well drained soil with a pH approx. 4.5-7.  They grow to approx. 20cm in height and are not a potting plant.

Tritonia (Zones 1,2,3,4) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

Plant these bulbs 8-10cm apart and 5cm deep in well drained soil.  They prefer a sunny location protected from wind. Regular watering is needed in the winter and spring and especially just before flowering.  Keep fairly dry over summer and autumn. They are frost hardy and will perennialise. Excellent for rockeries and pots.

Tulips: (Zones 1,2,3—4 as annuals) - Also see general bulb growing instructions

Tulips: (Zones 1,2,3- 4 as annuals) - Also see general bulb growing instructions

Tulips should be planted in late March – May, in full to partial sun. March planting is only for zones 1- 3, May for Zone 4. Once buds appear, a little complete fertiliser can be mixed into soil, and a high nitrogen topdressing should be applied at emergence. Water in as bulb is shooting, and water well after flowers die off to ensure good bulb growth for next year's flowers. Lift bulbs when foliage is yellowed, and store in net bag in ventilated, cool area. Flowers in spring.

Refrigerating Tulips

Tulips love a cold winter, a mild spring and dry summer. You can't control everything about your climate but you can control the winter period quite easily. If you live somewhere that doesn't get any winter frosts your ground does not get naturally cold enough for tulips. You will need to give them a winter before you plant, this can be done by putting your bulbs in a fridge for about 6- 8 weeks before planting. If growing in warmer climates planting is best in mid May so put into the fridge mid- late March.

Things to remember about putting bulbs in the fridge

1.Don't freeze them 2.They need air flow around them. 3. Open the paper bags. 4. Store away from ripe fruit and vegetables. 5. They will grow taller, and flower earlier as a result of refrigeration, and this effect is cumulative.

In warm climates tulips grow well as annuals. Plant the bulbs up in large pots in late May after 8 weeks of refrigeration and put the pot in the coldest part of the garden (no sun) until the shoots are 5 cm high. Then move the pot to your favourite position and enjoy the spectacular growth and flowering of these energetic bulbs.

Verbascum: (Zones 1,2)

Enjoy less fertile soil with good drainage and full sun. Fairly short lives lasting only a few seasons, however they will self sew. Cut away spent flower stems soon after flowering. Old stems are quite ornamental dried.

Water Iris: Zones 1,2,3,4)

Laevigata are best positioned in full sun. Plant in consistently wet soil, semi submerged or in a completely submerged pot. If planting in a pot a 20cm one will suffice. Pots placed 5-10 cm under water will need stones to hold the potting mix in place. Can be fed in spring before flowering and after flowering. You may need to divide rhizomes in small pots yearly. Can be cut back in winter to 5cm above crown. Blood and bone added to a pond seems to make excellent fish food.

Watsonia: (Zones 1,2,3,4) - See also General Bulb Growing Instructions

Watsonia is a hardy South African export and cousin of Gladioli. The flowers rise above the sword like foliage 1-1.5m. Best planted to the back of the border where they can be left to naturalise. Plant corms point side up 15cm deep and 15cm apart in free draining soil. Enjoy full sun, blood and bone at planting and each autumn. Can be grown in pots.

Zantedeschia (Calla Lily): (Zones 1,2,3,4)

Zantedeschias are fantastic in pots with their decorative leaves and long lasting flowers.  Plant  with some blood and bone or general purpose fertiliser and re-apply annually. In the garden plant in rich well drained soil with a pH of 6-7.5.  Adding some organic matter will help them to thrive.  Plant rough side up and the smoother rounded side down. They like a full sun to half sun situation and do not generally like frosts.  In cooler climates where there are severe frosts it is necessary to lift and store the rhizome for winter.  Store in a ventilated place for a minimum storage time of 10 weeks, although they can remain in storage for as long as 8 to 10 months.   If you have trouble making them flower you may need to move them for more sun.  They need around 6 hours sun per day to flower well, giving them more shade will result in more foliage but decreased flowering.  Water before hot conditions prevail.  It is important that Calla lilies never dry out, nor are water sodden. They grow to approx. 65cm in height.  They will naturalise and can be left in the ground for several years, before lifting  and dividing.