Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A Sea of Spring Bulbs

There is nothing quite so beautiful as a sea of bulbs spreading across a lawn or field.  The colour just sings to you. 

Like this


What do you mean you don't see anything?  I planted 75 bulbs of Siberian Squill across my front lawn last fall.  They have created a brilliant blue sea, a welcome sight to one and all.

Oh okay we'll get a little closer shall we...


Better?

No!  oh fine


There now you can make them out.  Still fuzzy you say?


Surely you can see them now?  Okay we'll just lay down on the ground here for a better shot ...


This dainty flower is the Siberian Squill.  Doesn't 75 bulbs sound like an awful lot of flowers?  If you bought 75 trees you'd sure notice but each bulb produces just a couple dainty flowers and spread across a large area they look very insignificant.  Now in all honesty I knew 75 bulbs would be a small drop in the bucket but I couldn't afford to buy the amount I really needed so this is a project that will take a few years.  My plan is to continue purchasing 100 or so bulbs each fall and keep adding to the group.  Siberian Squill are also known to seed themselves so my hope is that they will eventually begin to fill in the lawn by themselves.  Eventually that sea of blue will happen but it will take some long term thinking to get there.

26 comments:

  1. I have to say I thought you were joking at first ... but, as the shots got closer, I can see how they would go unnoticed as they really are such tiny little things. Give it a few more years though, with a 100 added every year, and it will look fabulous!

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  2. Bernie, the reality is that it is a bit of a joke! on me anyway. I knew it would be a small show but this is like a show in miniature against that massive lawn. baby steps.

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  3. Many of my gardens are gorgeous in my imagination and almost invisible in reality. Your post reminds me of the 100 daffodils I planted in a soggy meadow, hoping for a sea of yellow. I got one or two, and they have naturalized into about 9 or 10 now several years later. Here's hoping your squill gets going! It will be a softly pretty sweep one day : )

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  4. Yes, but they're blooming! Finally! And yes they'll spread all over eventually, given them a few years! I do love to see a whole lawn covered with them - the colour is just so brilliant! And now I know what they're really called!

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  5. As with any great journey, it begins with the first step.

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  6. Squill seeds about as well as producing little bubils. We dropped one in each hole when we aerated our lawn. First year there were just a few but they have been steadily multiplying.I don't think you will have to add more just give them time and you will have a sea of blue.

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  7. Perfection takes time. :-) I'm sure it will be a blue sea before you know it!

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  8. You are off to a good start. I think it is a fabulous idea and I am so happy that you have some color blooming in your yard! I know it has been a long winter for you but it looks like Spring has finally arrived!

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  9. I planted 90 daffodil bulbs in the septic field and it barely shows up...I am sure the Scilla are so small, they will take a little while to really put on a show....but it will be pretty!

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  10. I think they look great! I hope you will have a sea of blue soon.

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  11. Just remember, we gardeners are known for our patience...If you plant them, they will flower!

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  12. haha - I've done the same thing thinking 100 bulbs would cover acres! Great plan, though, to add to it every year. In a few years, that picture will be totally different!

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  13. Marguerite, I think the only way to approach a project like this is with great patience - imagine having to plant a thousand bulbs all in one season?! Slowly, slowly the carpet will develop. And I am glad that I was wrong - when I first started reading (and peering closely at the photos) I feared this was going to be another tale of bulbs eaten by critters!

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  14. You will love it when they multiply. Many of my neighbours have them and I am now coveting their sprightly blueness.

    I think your ambition for a sea of blue will be beautiful. :)

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  15. Laurrie - my imagination far outdoes my reality. Even so I was happy to see even those few blooms in the yard. First flowers of spring!

    Jane - so glad we solved this riddle for you. Despite the small show it really is nice to look out and see some blooms at last.

    TufaGirl - fateful words. Check back in a couple years and we'll see what we've got.

    Anonymous - they produce bulbs too! yippee. I think I'll continue to add some since I'm awful impatient but good to know they'll spread even faster than I had supposed.

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  16. On My Soapbox - perfection? I'm a long way from that in so many ways ;-)

    Karin - any colour would do right now after all that white!

    Janet - I have high hopes. I hadn't realized quite how small they were but that blue is so lovely.

    Thanks fer! One thing about gardening, it teaches you patience.

    Debbie - that's the key isn't it?

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  17. Holley - amazing how small those bulbs are! I can't even imagine how many bulbs some of the tulip shows and those places plant.

    Janet - luckily the critters haven't found these bulbs or they don't like them (I have heard squill are supposedly vole resistant). Fingers crossed it stays that way!

    Ms.S - the blue really is sharp isn't it? I'm really impressed with how these flowers look, even if I have to get down on my hands and knees to appreciate them.

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  18. lol. yes I can indeed see it in my minds eye. I think gardening has taught me that I can have everything at once, these things take time.

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  19. I am hoping for my own sea of blue, but with camas. i think i planted the bulbs too deep in some places because my sea of blue is green and brown right now :( we'll get there some day!!

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  20. Hi Marguerite, I am sure your sea of blue will appear in a the next couple of years. I planted a handful of these bulbs under my peonies and now the whole bed is covered with tiny blue flowers. I think they must also be long lived bulbs, because there is some in the field beside our home, even though there hasn't been a house there for over 20 years.

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  21. Oh, I almost past the sea of blue then I came onto it. Are they blue bells? I have some also but not sure of the name. Came across blue tulips the other day what a beauty.

    Thanks for stopping by, I'll visit often,

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  22. aren't they the most beautiful blue, I have some near my side door which I have been enjoying so I am pleased to read from other commenters that they seed and spread, I know what you mean about how we see our plantings in our mind and the reality ... still at least your squilla came up years ago I planted 50+ fritillaria across my damp meadow area thinking I would have a springtime sea of nodding snakesheads - nothing, then last year 1 appeared ~ very weird,
    enjoy your sea of blue in your minds eye and I hope it will be a reality in years to come, that's a big lawn though, Frances

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  23. Oh it will be so worth it in a few years! Any color in the spring, no matter how small, is a delight.

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  24. Marguerite, I love your approach of adding about 100 bulbs a year to your sea of squill. Since the bulbs will also multiply if they're in a spot that makes them happy, you will probably get exponential growth in another couple of years. Definitely worth waiting for. When I tried to establish my own sea of blue squill in my front yard about 15 years ago, I had no clue what I was doing, only planted 20 bulbs, and then was discouraged when they didn't amount to anything! lol. I will try this again in a few years when I start re-landscaping the front; you've inspired me! -Jean

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  25. Jess - I often think I'm a patient person but I'm finding more and more with this garden I just can't wait!

    Jenn - love camassia! I'm thinking of some of these for a flower next year but they make a lovely meadow flower too don't they?

    Jennifer - how lovely to hear how these bulbs last. Hopefully they'll be here for everyone's enjoyment for years to come.

    Cindy - blue tulips? wow, I had no idea there was such a thing.

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  26. Frances - only one came up?! you must have been so disappointed. I was worried the voles would get these bulbs so I was thrilled to see they survived. The lawn is HUGE but decreasing. In the coming posts I'll show you the new beds that have sprung up.

    Kim - and what a colour it is! I love this rich blue.

    Jean - and I want to thank you for inspiring this planting! Back in the fall you suggested squill. I wouldn't have known to plant these bulbs and they've turned out beautifully even though they're a bit sparse right now.

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