Need ideas: Pink/Burgundy/Blue garden-perennial bulbs

phylrae(z5a/centralNYS)August 25, 2010

I'd like to tuck in some interesting PERENNIAL (z. 5a) bulbs that will bloom in different true (not purply pinks) pinks & burgundies & maybe some true blues in my front half-sun, half-shade (it's mostly dappled sun) perennial bed (which will consist of heucheras, alchemilla mollis (lady's mantle), geranium Rozanne, weigela My Monet (green, white, pink overtones)...persicaria Red Dragon, Lobelia Monet Moment, spirea Dart's Red, sedum Purple Emperor, long-established echinacea Doppleganger and maybe some pink lamium. (The sedum, lobelia & spirea will be in the sunniest parts) I am taking out a few daylilies that are orangey/red. Thing is, I don't want ugly foliage that persists or takes up too much space, and I don't want to have to lift bulbs. Any recommendations?

I was looking at John Scheepers multi-flowering hyacinths, but don't know what they mean by hardy to zone 4....does that mean they will return reliably? I was thinking of allium spaerocephalon & lilium speciosum rubrum/alba in the back (4' tall). Any other ideas? Thanks so much!

:0) Phyl

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iris_gal(z9 CA)

Yes, hardy to zone 4 means they will return in zone 4 & higher (but not necessarily in warm winter zones). Of course dependent upon soil & light.

Speciosum rubrum is my most favorite lily. Muscatel is my favorite pastel pink.

The only burgandy (non-tulip) bulb I can think of is Fritillaria meleagris or Fritillaria persica.
There are very deep red Asiatic lilies (Monte Negro, Landini). Lilium Nepalense for a 2-color cream and burgandy.

For truer blue Allium azureum. Wish it liked mild winters!
Drumstick Allium (A. sphaerocephalon) has always been a burgundy red here now that I remember it.

I had the multi-flowered hyacinths - in a pot so they didn't do as well as they would have in the ground. Rather inconspicuous I thought. I would definately put 2 bulbs per hole.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2010 at 9:28PM
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vetivert8(NI-NZ zone 9a)

Iris reticulata will give different shades of blue and, possibly, a 'wine-red' version. If your dappling comes from deciduous trees your timing might let the reticulatas come through flowering and then into good leaf growth before it becomes too shady.

Chionodoxa also give a pleasant blue and will be out in flower before the Alchemilla and the Heucheras are in full array.

Anemone blanda will give you a pink but you will have to give it some protection as its range is only down to zone 6. They do well in pots. Anemone nemorosa Robinson's is a delicate lavender-blue. It goes quite well with Pulmonaria - particularly those with strongly silvery leaves - and should be fine in your zone.

Corydalis and Colchicum might also be worth exploring. If you can provide winter protection - Rhodohypoxis can give a long display in either strong pink or soft. The little double is pretty but only buy it in flower as some of the doubles are seriously more weirdly interesting than genuinely double.

And Erythronium revolutum or hendersonii, of course.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 6:42AM
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Wow, thank you both for all the input....I will google your recommendations! I guess I didn't think any hyacinths were hardy around here....thought everybody had to replant (I've never grown them). I had totally forgotten, too, that I was wanting that fritillaria melagris....thanks again! :0) Phyl

    Bookmark   August 26, 2010 at 7:05AM
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