Tips on planting the bulbs
The bulbs should be planted in September/October (unless they happen to sprout sooner). Until then, store them in a paper bag in cool spot.
Pot size -- Your bulbs will be happy in a pot 1 quart (1 liter) to 1 gallon (4 liter) in size. The pot needs drainage holes
Soil -- Use well draining soil. A typical mix is 2 parts potting soil mixed with 1 part perlite or pumice. An alternate mix is 1 part coir fiber to 1 part perlite or coarse horticultural sand.
Planting the bulbs -- Fill the pot to within 3 inches (7 cm) of the top with soil. Then place a 1/2 inch (15 mm) layer of perlite or sand down, place the bulb on top, lay another 1/2 inch layer of perlite over the bulb, and continue filling the pot with soil. The purpose of the perlite/sand layer is to prevent rot. Place the bulbs at least 1 inch (3 cm) away from each other and from the side of the pot.
Water the soil lightly, so it is slightly moist throughout (not soggy), and keep it this moist until they sprout. Keep the pot out of direct sun, and preferably at room temperature until they sprout. When the bulbs sprout, start increasing the water and move the pot into sun.
Watering: During the growing season, this Gladiolus likes moist soil and shouldn't be allowed to dry out. It shouldn't be kept soggy however. When the leaves start to die back in the summer, withhold all water, since the plant is preparing for dormancy.
Sunlight -- They appreciate mostly-sunny conditions. In warmer climates, it may be a good idea to give some afternoon shade.
Feeding -- During periods of active growth, feed about every 2-3 months with a slow-release fertilizer, such as pelleted or organic fertilizer. The plants do not need a lot of fertilizer to be happy.
Winter care -- The plant needs protection from frost throughout winter.
Dormancy care -- Once the leaves die back in the summer, keep the soil dry until the fall. A small amount of moisture is okay, especially to keep the soil from becoming bone-dry. Store the pot in a cool area (60-70°F / 15-21°C) until the fall. You may instead pull the bulbs and store them in a paper bag until autumn.
Have fun growing them!
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