How to plant freesia bulbs: A guide

Gardeners’ World expert gives advice on watering plants in pots

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Planting your freesia bulbs is all about timing to give these bright petals a chance to bloom in your summer garden – and knowing how to plant them properly for strong-rooted growth is key to securing a repeated flowering period year after year. Caring for this perennial is just as important as planting it correctly and this is how you should do it.

When to plant freesias

Freesias are best-planted in well-drained soil as they are prone to rotting when waterlogged.

While these pretty-petalled plants are versatile in where they can be planted, they are not a frost-hardy species so can only be planted outdoors in spring or early summer.

The exact planting time depends on where you are growing your freesias as their blooming period will vary depending on their growing environment.

With September right around the corner, the time is right to be planting freesias in your favourite pots around the house.

Freesias grown indoors should be planted in autumn to bloom in late winter.

You can repeat the planting process from January to March for an early summer freesia bloom in your home.

Outdoor growing freesias should be planted from April to June and should begin to shoot around a month after planting.

How to plant freesias

On its website, Gardener’s World says: “Plant freesia corms in well-drained soil or potting compost pointy-end up, at a depth of three to five centimetres and spaced five centimetres apart.

“Water well and then stand the pot in a cool, shaded, frost free place – a temperature of around 5°C is ideal.

“After three to four weeks when shoots appear, move into a warmer and sunny position.”

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The colourful display offered by freesias is ideal for a scented retreat in your garden and their colour range looks nothing short of spectacular during their five-week flowering period.

Offering zingy yellow, pinks, reds and pastel shades, freesias can spruce up a dull corner of your garden or add a pop of colour to a white backdrop in your home.

These highly perfumed and easy to grow plants also come in white petalled varieties and fill your home and garden with a pleasant scent throughout most of the summer – and even in winter if you’re planting indoors right about now.

Re-use your freesia bulbs

One of the best things about freesia bulbs is that they can be recycled and grown once again the following year after flowering.

When freesias reach the end of their flowering period in summer, all you need to do is cut the faded flowers and stems and reduce your watering routine as the leaves fade into a yellow hue and die off.

Dry the bulbs and store in a cool, dry environment ahead of the following year.

Top tips

Freesias are an overseas plant so enjoy more tropical climates similar to their South African roots.

They do best in warm, sheltered environments with lots of sun and look lovely on well-lit window-sills and look effortless when potted around porches or conservatories.

It’s important to keep your freesias balanced with warmth as over-exposure to heat can result in weak, spindly growth and defeat the longevity of these stunningly bright blooms.

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