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The Spring Garden - Ranunculus

By far one of the most magnificent flowers of the Spring garden is the Ranunculus. Ranunculus is a vast species with over 600 varieties, and part of the ranunculaceae family (that's a mouth full!). This flower often referred to as the "Spring Rose" originated in Europe and South West Asia.

As there are too many to list I am going to stick to a few favorites of mine and some popular varieties.

1. Purple Picottee - A beautiful purple rimmed white centered variety that almost has a cabbage appearance with its ruffled petals.

2. Venere - Stunning pale pink salmon petals on a strong sturdy 24" stem. Part of the Italian Cloni series.

3. Amandine Rose - One of Hollands most successful exports. Gorgeous deep rose color fully double flower that is known to be robust and prolific.

4. The Cloni Series - The Italian ranunculus Cloni series is a feast for the eyes with fully double petals and a broad range of delicious colors of the blush Hanoi, the rosa and it's soft pink hue along with the pale peach of Blushing Pascal!

5. Butterfly Ranunculus - Bred in Japan these beauties are a little different as they have a unique singular flower structure but with all the delicate beauty and shades of the ranunculus.

How to Grow -

With a couple of tips up your sleeve I'm sure you will have success growing this garden gem.

- Ranunculus come delivered as a small octopus looking corm. In order to get off to a good start I recommend pre-soaking the corm for around 4 hours in a bowl. I have read the super keen also soak under a gentle dripping tap to keep the water flowing with oxygen which prevents fungal producing bacteria from getting on the corms. I have done this and also done without. I do think if you don't want to place under a slow dipping tap you should be ok but definitely dust or spray with a fungicide before planting out as ranunculus is very prone to fungal rot.

- Once the corms are soaked place out in a pot or tray around 2-3 inches deep, 4" apart, with the octopus legs facing down. I think pre-sprouting is a great idea and will always do so now I have tried it. Pre-sprouting just means you put all your corms in a large tray flat and see which ones sprout after about 5 weeks. Sadly not all the corms will sprout as some will just simply not thrive and/or rot. Once you have figured out which ones are viable, which should be at least 70-80%, you can then plant them out in the garden or pots where you would like them without having gaps.

- Water the ranunculus in when you first plant them and then don't water again until you start to see shoots and leaves emerging. It is very easy to rot these plants out with over watering so I would suggest in a hot climate, water only lightly around 3 times a week. I'm in zone 10 and they do well in part sun/part shade. In a cooler climate they may thrive better in full sun.

- At the end of the flowering season, and once the foliage has died back, you can gently pull the corms back out of the soil, rinse them off and dry them out in a shady spot for 2 weeks before storing in a cool dry place to use and divide the following year.

Well I hope that has some of you inspired to grow these gorgeous flowers in your Spring garden and the confidence to give it a go. Corms are available to purchase online. Happy gardening friends and I'll be writing about Daffodils in next weeks blog. Please share this blog with your friends and subscribe to support my new adventure and read cool blogs!


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