THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HARDY BULBS AND TENDER BULBS…
Image by motodraconis The multitude of flower bulbs available to the home gardener today is simply dizzying. It seems like every year, hundreds of new varieties hit the market, resulting in even more selections that a gardener has to make. With all of the types of bulbs available, it is no wonder that some people may get a little confused when it comes to some of the attributes that different species, even varieties have.
One very important attribute that a bulb gardener must pay attention to is whether a bulb is a hardy bulb or a tender bulb. A new gardener may even be wondering what hardy and tender means when talking about bulbs.
The difference between a hardy bulb and a tender bulb is actually quite simple. A hardy bulb is a bulb that you can leave in the ground year round and will not be killed off by frost or a ground freeze. A tender bulb, on the other hand is a bulb that can be damaged or killed by cold, frost or ground freeze.
What’s more important to the home gardener is what these distinctions mean in terms of their work in the garden. As has already been said, a hardy bulb has less work attached to it. You simply plant them in the ground during the proper season and enjoy them year after year with little effort. The only effort you really need to put into hardy bulbs is a little fertilizing every year and dividing the bulb clumps every few years. Some examples of hardy bulbs include daffodils, scilla (wood hyacinth), muscari (grape hyacinth) and crocus.
Tender bulbs require a bit more work. With tender blooming bulbs, a gardener must plant these bulbs each year and dig them up and store them before the winter cold sets in. While tender bulbs require more work, they are still very popular and some are even grown as indoor plants year round. Normally, tender bulbs tend to be summer or autumn blooming bulbs. This is due to the fact that summer blooming bulbs are planted in spring and autumn blooming bulbs are planted in late spring to summer. Some examples of tender bulbs include amaryllis, spider lily and wood sorrel.
New gardeners should not be scared off by tender bulbs. While they do require a little more work, the flowers they produce are well worth the extra effort.
So, as you can see, the difference between hardy bulbs and tender bulbs is quite easy to understand