Planting for Early Spring Blooms

Planting for Early Spring Blooms
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You've waited all winter to see the first signs of life beneath the snow and ice. With a little planning you can make the most of this early spring period by planting a variety of bulbs that will bring you joy.
This is a list of bulbs that are the very first to bloom in the spring:

Danford Iris (Iris danfordiae)

Netted Iris (Iris reticulata)

Snowdrop (Galanthus nivalis)

Winter Aconite (Eranthis hyemalis)

Crocus (Crocus spp.)

Glory-of-the-Snow (Chionodoxa luciliae)

Siberian Squill (Scilla siberica)

Striped Squill (Puschkinia scilloides)

Grecian Windflower (Anemone blanda)

Common Grape Hyacinth (Muscari botryoides)

Early Daffodils (Narcissus spp.)

Today I wanted to talk about two irises. Both have bulbs instead of rhizomes, and bloom about the same time as the crocus. The first is the Danford iris (Iris danfordiae), a charming yellow flower with brown spots that grows low to the ground. It grows well in Zones 4-9, are 4-6 inches tall, and is known for being deer resistant and hardy. The Danford iris also has a sweet scent and works well in rock gardens. It does best in full sun with some moisture, but doesn't do well when it sits in cold wet ground for too long.

The netted iris (Iris reticulata) blooms in shades of blue and purple and appears slightly later than the Danford iris. It gets its name from the net-like skin that covers the bulbs. While the Danford iris has full wide blooms more like the tall irises, the netted iris is made up of long slim petals that form the bloom. They are about the same height at 6 inches and the yellow and purple are striking together. Both types of this dwarf iris need to be planted where it is sunny in the spring. They work well together when you plant groups of them in rock gardens, front borders, under trees or even near a pond. When you notice that the blooms are lessening, dig them up and divide in late summer or early fall then replant.


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at


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