Gladioli Growing Guide

Gladioli, also known as gladiolus or sword lilies, are flowering plants that belong to the family Iridaceae. They are native to South Africa but are widely cultivated throughout the world as ornamental plants.

Gladioli plants typically grow from 2 to 6 feet tall and produce long spikes of funnel-shaped flowers that bloom in late summer. The flowers are available in a wide range of colours, including red, pink, yellow, orange, white, and purple, and can be single or double blooms. Each spike can bear numerous flowers, with some varieties having up to 20 flowers per stem.

The flowers themselves are quite showy and have a distinctive shape, with three large outer petals, three smaller inner petals, and a central reproductive structure. They are known for their long-lasting blooms, which can last up to two weeks in a vase with proper care.

Gladioli are popular as cut flowers for use in floral arrangements, and they are also commonly used in garden beds and borders. They prefer full sun and well-draining soil, and they can be grown from corms (similar to bulbs) or from seeds. With proper care, gladioli can be a striking addition to any garden or floral display.


Gladioli image

Planting gladiolus bulbs is a fairly simple process that involves planting the bulbs at the right depth and in the right location, and taking care of them properly. Here are the steps to plant gladiolus bulbs 

  1. Choose the right time: Gladiolus bulbs are typically planted in the spring after the last frost. They can also be planted in the winter in warmer climates.
  2. Choose the right location: Gladiolus prefer a sunny location with well-draining soil. Choose a spot that gets at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day.
  3. Prepare the soil: Gladiolus prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. Amend the soil with compost or well-rotted manure to improve drainage and fertility.
  4. Dig holes: Dig holes that are about 6 inches deep and about 6-8 inches apart. If you are planting multiple bulbs, you can dig a trench instead.
  5. Plant the bulbs: Place the bulb in the hole with the pointed end facing up, and cover it with soil. The top of the bulb should be about 2-3 inches below the surface of the soil.
  6. Water the bulbs: Water the bulbs thoroughly after planting, and continue to water them regularly throughout the growing season. Be careful not to overwater, as gladiolus prefer slightly dry soil.
  7. Stake the plants: Gladiolus can grow quite tall, so it's a good idea to stake them to prevent them from bending or breaking. Insert stakes into the ground near the bulbs and tie the stems to the stakes as they grow.
  8. Fertilize the bulbs: Gladiolus benefit from a balanced fertilizer applied in the spring when new growth appears.

With proper planting and care, your gladiolus bulbs should grow into beautiful plants that produce lovely flowers.