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By Sanbaz

staining blackpool, United Kingdom Gb

i planted my ismene bulbs same time as hollyhocks and begonia but not a sign of life from them yet, are they hard to grow, shall i take them out and try another method to start them off?



In my experience, Ismene (or Hymenocallis) bulbs need a fair amount of heat to start growing, so if the soil is less than 24 deg. C, it may refuse to grow. It may even rot if kept too wet! Hollyhocks like cool soil, and begonias don't need quite as much heat.

3 Apr, 2010


thanx for advice TB, will pop it somewhere warmer and see if anything happens then :o)

3 Apr, 2010


Sanbaz - only a year late with advice, but like you I've failed (consistently) with these.......
However, yesterday I found my first flower stem!
So here's my advice....

The bulbs in a lot of garden centres are rather small, which puts you on the back foot straight away. I bought two large bulbs this year, 70/80mm in diameter, at two quid each.
They were put in five inch pots, buried up to their necks only.
As Tug stated, warmth is important, so mine is in the conservatory. Equally importantly, by keeping them indoors we can control the moisture levels, which is important I believe as my bulbs would put growth on yet wither and die as they had turned to mush. I've kept mine barely moist to start with, increasing the water along with growth (yet trying to keep the soil on the drier side).
Mine have been in barely two months, so they are rapid growing.

24 May, 2011


hi meanie, better late than never and thanx for you advice and good for you to keep trying and now with success, so if i get the chance to get larger bulbs i will and give them another go, great help cheers :o)) post a pic when in flower ok

24 May, 2011


Can I take it that you had no joy?
If they have them again next year (and I remember) I'll grab you a couple. They were sold as loose bulbs at a florists in the covered market in Oxford. I also grabbed some Scadoxus multiflorus bulbs too, which are seriously slow to get going!

24 May, 2011

How do I say thanks?

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