Freesia freesia

Height 20-45cm (8-18in)

Planting distance 10cm (4in)

Flowers mid summer to early autumn

Well-drained good soil

Sunny sheltered site

Corms available late winter to mid spring Freesias can now be grown out-doors in mild districts, thanks to the development of specially prepared corms (sold as Freesia x hybrida). The colourful flowers (white, pink, yellow, orange, red, mauve, purple and blue) come in a single or double form, carried on 20-45cm (8-18in) high wiry stems. They appear in late summer and have a magnificent fragrance and are excellent for cutting. Usually freesias are sold as mixed collections of single or double flowered forms.

Cultivation

In mid and late spring, plant prepared corms in any good well-drained soil. They thrive in sandy soils. Choose a bed in a sunny, sheltered position: as freesias are primarily grown for cutting, a spot in the vegetable patch would be ideal. Set the corms 5-7.5cm (2-3in) deep and 10cm (4in) apart and give each one a twiggy stick for support. Water frequently during the growing period.

Freesias will not survive the winter outdoors. Lift after the foliage has turned yellow. It’s generally not worth storing the corms over winter – often they fail to flower the following year. Buy fresh ones every spring.

Propagation

Prepared corms for outdoor cultivation are usually exhausted after flowering so propagation is difficult.

Pests and diseases

Aphids sometimes infest the stems and leaves.

22. February 2012 by Dave Pinkney
Categories: Annuals, Biennials, Bulbous Plants, Featured Articles | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on Freesia freesia

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