An all-time favorite, Gladioli are usually grown for elegant flower arrangements but they are also a great choice to fill your borders with bold colors! Sometimes called the sword lily, the most widely used English common name for these plants is simply Gladiolus. They come in a rainbow of colors, and their long stems mean you can grow armloads of flowers in a small space. Their sword-like foliage and tall, impressive flower spikes, make striking accents in the mixed flower border. They are also key elements in a shrub border and amongst perennials.
- Lasting a week or more in the vase, gladioli are one of the best flowers for arrangements
- Gladiolus will grow in any good garden soil but do need full sun and good drainage
- Plant bulbs 4 in. deep in clay soils and 6 in. deep in others; the deeper the planting, the less need for staking
- Space plants 5 in. apart
- For the best appearance and straightest stems, be sure to stake your plants
- Space planting times at two-week intervals from early spring to late June, to ensure a continuation of mid and late summer blooms
- When flowers begin to develop, increase water and fertilizer