Fall's first bite is in the air and you know what that means: it's time to bust out your winter bulbs and start your fall planting! Not sure what to plant this year? These five winter bulbs will melt your heart come spring.
If you haven't figured it out yet, I love allium. When it comes to winter bulbs (or garden herbs or border flowers!), allium are my favorite. Wherever they are, I just can't seem to get enough of these perennials in my life. And, with so many varieties, who can blame me? Pretty in purple, white or yellow, allium can be small and stately (like garlic chives and drumstick allium) or huge and bold (like the Gladiator and Globemaster varieties).
There's something strangely sentimental and old-timey about crocus. A traditional winter bulb that's perfect for fall planting, crocus are early bloomers that eagerly peek out of the spring ground in a pretty palette of ivories, yellows and lavenders. Plus, they smell wonderful. Plant in groups for aromatic, eye-catching displays.
You can't talk fall planting and winter bulbs without mentioning tulips (Tulipa). With dozens (upon dozens) of varieties to choose from, tulips are pretty much the world's favorite fall planting flower. And, with so many hardy cultivars that are eager to perennialize available, the only reason not to grow them is to deny your squirrels the fun of finding them.
If you're going to talk tulips, then you need to talk daffodils too. Another winter bulb that's popular for fall planting, daffodils (Narcissus) are the quintessential spring flower. Bright, bold and often early on the still-snow-covered scene, daffodils bring a much-needed splash of cheery color to an otherwise still dreary winter landscape. Plus, squirrels and bunnies hate daffodils bulbs so they're a great way to keep squirrels out of your garden.
Want to put a little forest in your fall planting this year? Try Jack-in-the-Pulpit for a winter bulb that is sure to catch everyone's eye come spring. An exotic looker, Jack-in-the-Pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum) is a woodland wildflower that grows well in either wildflower or shade gardens, where it often naturalizes.
So what are your favorite winter bulbs, and what's going in your garden this fall?
(Images graciously provided by Swirus71, cendol, vikush, Stuart Sipahigil and Plusverde. Thanks!)