Six on Saturday 6th July 2019 – Summer Bulbs

Lillium Elodie

I have a passion for bulbs, as well as ferns and some other groups of plants, but bulbs I really love.  I love that there is so much energy and possibility packed into a small bulb, or corm.  I love that bulbs send up their flower, like a rocket, and then die down allowing space for something else to shine.


I’m especially proud of the clumps of Watsonia as I grew them from seed some years ago.  The clumps have got so big that they have been divided and moved around the garden. Watsonia isn’t a plant I see much in English gardens, but a few years back when I visited gardens in Ireland it was everywhere.

Asphodeline lutea

I’ve included Asphodeline lutea as I was super excited to spot it’s flower spikes yesterday.  Like the Watsonia I grew it from seed a few years ago but it has never flowered, there’s just been some wiry leaves but this year there are two flowers spikes.  Hopefully in the next few days the flowers will open.


Brodiaea has been growing in my garden for a few year’s now, the original bulbs were bought from a supermarket and it seems to just seed around the garden, popping up here and there as in the gravel outside the seed where I would never have managed to plant it.

A tiny little allium, label missing, which grows in my front garden.  I do like alliums and have all sorts that appear throughout the year but I’m appalling at labelling and when I do remember to include the label the birds remove it.  But does it really matter, its a cut clump of alliums which I suspect I bought from an AGS plant sale when I was dabbling in alpines.

Crocosmia Lucifer

And my sixth bulb is Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ which also grows in the front garden is at the other end of the size spectrum to the allium.  There are two forms of Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ one flowering before the other and I have the early flowering variety.  It’s a rather glamour bulb – tall and dramatic.

Those are my Six on Saturday at the end of a warm week which has benefited the bulbs greatly, especially those from South Africa.

For more Six on Saturday posts check out The Propagator’s blog

Author: Helen Johnstone

I live in Malvern, Worcestershire and am a very keen gardener. I started the Patient Gardener Blog in January 2008 as a way of recording what was happening in my garden and connecting with other like-minded people. I started a second blog PatientGardener 365 January 2013 in order to try and post a photo a day to capture what is growing in my garden or places I have visited

13 thoughts on “Six on Saturday 6th July 2019 – Summer Bulbs”

  1. Each are so beautiful! And like how you said this about bulbs –
    “like a rocket, and then die down allowing space for something else to shine.”

  2. I know what you mean about bulbs, especially when they’ve overwintered in the shed and look gnarled and wizened only to produce a beautiful flower a few months later.

    1. Oh dear, next years seed list just got a bit longer. Truly there’s no such thing as too many plants when you can mix them amongst other plants in an already full garden.

  3. I love the Watsonia – I’d really like to grow that one…and I love the Brodiaea too. (I have it on my own blog this week. 🙂 )

  4. I am increasing the number of bulbs that I grow, to include summer flowering ones as well as the usual spring variety. You have some beauties here and I have made notes of the names! I particularly fancy the Watsonia.

  5. You got some nice ones there. I grew lily this year for the first time since growing it as a cut flower crop during an internship back in 1986. Watsonia is a bulb that I want more of, just because they are so resilient once established. There is a nice big clump growing on the side of Highway 1 through ‘Watsonville’ (really).

  6. Ooh I like the watsonia! Well done for growing from seed. Quite a while to get something worthwhile. I have a few like that which haven’t yet flowered, some hesperantha (this year maybe?) and some species tulips too. Rewarding. Gardening is a long game.

    1. I do like challenging seed sowing – a real sense of achievement when they finally flower

  7. I am also a fan of bulb plants. Especially liliums which I grow every year. I love they way they bloom and also the variety of colours they offer. This year my favourite one is pink and white. However, I also saw a big liliums which are similar to the trees owing to the fact that they are so high. Have you ever heard about them? Or maybe you have grown them?

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