Golden State Bulb Growers

Home Garden

GSBG provides current information on the best plant care practices for the varieties that we sell.  The following will provide the necessary information for success in a home garden with our plants: calla lily care for cut flowers, calla lily flower bulb care, growing tuberous begonia bulbs, growing scilla peruvianna and growing pineapple lilies.

Calla Lily Care: Cut Flower

Follow these five simple steps to care for your fresh cut calla lilies:

  1. Remove all packaging from your fresh cut calla lilies.
  2. Fill a vase with 3/8” of water and add plant food. With a sharp non-serrated knife, cut approximately 1/2” off of the bottom of the stem. Place callas in vase immediately after cutting.  Limiting the amount of water you place in the vase is very important.
  3. Display your calla lilies away from drafts, direct sunlight and excessive heat or cold.
  4. Change water in the vase every 2-3 days or when the water becomes non- translucent.
  5. Before placing your bouquet back in the vase, trim approximately ¼” to ½” off the stem.

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Calla Lily Care: Flower Bulbs

  1. Find an area where the callas will receive full sun and soil is free draining. (In hotter climates, callas need partial shade during the hottest part of the day.)
  2. Dig 3″ deep holes that are about 1′ apart.
  3. Place bulbs in the hole with growing points facing up. Leave tops of the tubers exposed when filling the hole.
  4. After planting, generously water the calla tubers to settle the soil. Roots and sprouts will form a few weeks after planting.
  5. Keep soil moist but not soggy after the first watering. Calla bulbs will rot in saturated conditions.
  6. Any full spectrum fertilizer at standard rates will keep calla plants healthy and the foliage green.
  7. In Fall the leaves will begin to naturally turn yellow as the bulb begins its dormancy cycle. Allow the foliage to die back completely, do not cut back.
  8. In areas that experience freezing temperatures dig up tubers and store bulbs for next spring. Bulbs can be stored in paper or mesh bags.

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Growing Tuberous Begonias

  1. Fill a flat box or small pot with potting soil at least 2 ½ inches deep.  Any porous, slightly acidic soil is satisfactory. Peat moss soil mixes are best to retain moisture and create slightly acidic conditions.
  2. Place the tubers hollow side up with the top just below the surface. Keep the soil moist but not soggy. Multiple small tubers can be planted in a single pot. This works particularly well with hanging basket varieties. Begonias will bloom 12 to 20 weeks after planting.

Sunlight: Full sun in the morning with afternoon shade.

Water: Begonias need to be kept moist at all times. Begonias prefer cool, moist conditions. Spraying plants with water on hotter days will help maintain cool conditions. Avoid saturating the soil, over saturating the soil will promote rot.

Fertilizing: Any mild fertilizer can be used at intervals throughout the season. For best results, fertilize lightly in the first few weeks of planting.  Once blooms appear begin regular fertilization. We recommend using Romeo Plant Food.

Diseases: Begonias are susceptible to various fungi and bacteria. An environment with good airflow is essential to maintaining healthy plants. Prevention is the only cure for powdery mildew. Use fungicides only as directed on the label.

Dormancy: In autumn after leaves turn yellow and the blooming season is over, water should be withheld and soil should dry completely. Tubers may be lifted or left in pots and stored in a cool, dry non-freezing place until planting time again next spring.

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Caribbean Jewels Scilla peruvianna

Planting: Plant the nose of the scilla bulb 1-2″ deep and 8-12″ apart. For a fuller scilla plant, multiple bulbs can be planted in a container.

Sunlight: Full sun to part sun. Best location is under a deciduous tree.

Watering: No need for watering, winter rains are sufficient for scilla peruviana to grow.

Fertilizing: Scilla grows successfully outdoors in poor soils. Lightly fertilize if planted in containers.

Dormancy: Scilla peruviana naturally goes dormant in dry summer climates. Scilla is best adapted to Mediterranean climates. It will re-sprout from a dry bulb with cool autumn temperatures and rain.

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Aloha Lily Eucomis 

Planting:  Aloha Lily Bulbs can be planted in either containers or garden beds. They prefer deep, well-draining soil and are best-suited for medium pots 6-8”, 1 gallon, or 2 gallon containers. For a fuller Aloha Lily, multiple bulbs can be planted in a container.

Sunlight: Aloha Lilies prefer full sun. In hotter climates, they need partial shade during the hottest part of the day.

Watering: Keep soil moist but not soggy.

Fertilizing: Any full spectrum fertilizer at standard rates will keep the plant healthy and green.  Over fertilizing may result in tipburn, which is where the leaves appear to be burned.

Dormancy: After blooming, Aloha Lilies will continue to grow green foliage in order to store energy in the bulb for next year’s growth. In the beginning of fall, leaves will begin to turn yellow as the tuber begins its dormancy cycle. At this time discontinue watering and allow for the soil to dry out.

Frost: Aloha Lilies can handle moderate frost. It is best to mulch areas where the ground will freeze.  In areas where winters reach 10° F or colder, dig up tubers and keep in paper or mesh bags and protect them from freezing.  If tubers are in pots, it is ok to leave them in soil if it is completely dry.  Place containers outside and begin watering the pots the following spring after the last freeze.

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