FierceBlooms Grows Her Own – Narcissi and Tulips

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WORDS: Ricky Bache PHOTOS: Ricky Bache
Honestly, if I knew he had really hurt his back, I would not have had him pick axe the ground now would I? As it was, he said he was alright – although I suspect he was not completely enamoured with this new “fierceblooms grows her own” development.

I had been waiting for the first frosts but rather unusually, they didn’t look like they were coming to our Northern part of the world any time soon. So we ploughed on, literally.

The demise of our resident expert bulb finder meant I could think seriously about planting bulbs.

The previous spring had prompted this mass planting idea. I was looking for narcissi to include in my winter and spring floral designs and I just could not source what I wanted. I resolved to grow my own for next season. I wanted a continuous supply from January to May so I studied form, growing seasons and also importantly prices.

There was another event that meant I was more confident of the bulbs actually making it to the flowering stage in our countryside garden, also known as a countryside creature laden garden. The rather timely demise in the late summer of our resident expert bulb finder, formerly known as Mr squirrel Nutkin, meant I could think seriously about planting bulbs (this was at the expense of my entire harvest of poppy heads I hasten to add but at least he went happy).

I ended up ordering from Sarah Raven. Her prices were competitive (you can get discounts at times also) and she had the varieties I wanted.

It would be an understatement to say I agonised over what to include.

My choices included Actaea, Bridal crown, Felindre, Thalia, Geranium and Pheasants eye. Now I like a yellow daffodil, but these were prettier, with flatter heads and orange drums (that’s the bit in the middle), altogether, they looked much more “cottage garden” and everybody on pinterest seemed to have them!

I like a yellow daffodil, but these were prettier, with flatter heads and orange drums.

While I was at it, I decided to order a few tulips. It would be an understatement to say I agonised over what to include. I haven’t yet dug any more beds so these were going to pretty much take over the allotment (note to self to mention this in Spring to the axe operative).

…in the end, the deal breaker was colour, in Paula Prykes words “to be the muse” for my designs.

I had done some reading on stem strength and vase life but in the end, the deal breaker was colour and those that would give me blooms, in Paula Prykes words “the muse” for my designs. With this in mind, I ordered Apricot Beauty, La Belle Epoque, Angelique, Artist, Double Maureen,’Silver Parrot” and Spring Green. and then took a deep breath.

Read more from Fierceblooms on the floristry blog.

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