Sunday, August 22, 2010

Let's Go Tubing!

Tubing on the river is a common summer activity around this part of the South in the hot part of summer.  Around this same time, the tuberoses start blooming with their sweet-smelling spikes of bloom.

The blooms are set on long spikes of buds that open starting from the bottom buds.  The fragrance is very gardenia-like and wafting.  A stand of these can make a whole section of yard fragrant.  The blooms can crisp quickly in the blazing sun, so I tend to pick off the crisped blooms each day and keep the fresh ones on the spikes so as to keep the blooms tidy.  Cut off a whole spike to put in a vase for natural air freshener in your house.

I have way more bloom spikes this year, but they aren't as big and lush as last year.  I think this is because my little bed of tuberoses has become crowded and needs to be divided.  I can leave them in the ground year-round here and they will keep coming back.  I suppose they need protection in winter in zones colder than zone 8.  The variety I have is called "The Pearl."  Mine keep sending blooms up until frost, as you can see from the date in the above picture which was taken last November.  They like a sunny, dry spot.  I suggest they would make a nice additiion to a bulb bed where you might want some blooms later in the year after other plants have finished.


Jan said...

I didn't realize these would do so well here. I'll have to try some, especially if I can leave them in the ground.

Always Growing

meemsnyc said...

Ooh, those buds are so pretty!