Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora 24-36" tall. Glows in the garden!
Midsummer sprays of bright red flowers open from bottom to top on long arching bronze stems, like bursts of flame above gladiolus-like foliage. Lucifer is Dutch for ‘match,’ and in most shops in Holland you can pick up a box of lucifers—they’re kitchen matches.
Grows well in pots. Makes a long-lasting cutflower. Plant in full sun, 3" deep, 3" apart in moist well-drained soil.
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Tender Summer Bulbs
Spring-planted bulbs offer wonderful variety to the cutflower market and are a staple in old-fashioned gardens. Spring-planted bulbs are not hardy to northern climes. Smart and thrifty people lift and store them over the winter; the rest of us treat them as annuals.
Overwintering Summer Bulbs Dig spring-planted summer-blooming bulbs up in the fall after the foliage dies, gently brush off any soil and debris, and dry them. Store somewhere dark and cool (40–50°) in dry peat or sawdust, then replant in spring. You can also grow them in pots and relocate as the weather dictates.
You may want to try leaving the bulbs in the ground if you’re gardening somewhere warmer than Maine. Zone ratings: Crocosmia - Z6. Gladiolus - Z6; maybe Z5 with heavy snow cover.