How To Store Freesia Bulbs In 3 Easy Steps

If you want to know how to store freesia bulbs, you’ll be pleased to know that it only takes three steps. Freesia is a beautiful perennial herb, so it’s useful to understand its storage in winter for spring replanting. However, it’s worth noting that freesia bulbs are not bulbs per se, but instead, are the plant’s corms

The confusion between bulbs and corms are typical to plants like peacock orchids and freesias because gardeners often consider all underground root structures as bulbs. However, it would help you to know their differences in the plants’ overall care and growth. Therefore, the correct term should be the storage of freesia corms instead of freesia bulbs. 

 

How To Store Freesia Bulbs In 3 Easy Steps

How To Store Freesia Bulbs: Step By Step

 

Step #1. Gathering bulbs

One of the practices when growing freesias is storing them in winter for replanting in spring. This is especially crucial in areas that experience harsh winter, but even those that grow in the greenhouse can benefit from it. However, the greenhouse can also work as a storage area for the corms because you can control the indoor conditions much more comfortably.

When gathering freesia bulbs or corms, you want to dig at a depth of 8 inches around the plant. Careful not to damage the plant’s base, you want to lift up the soil in the perimeter to make the removal of corm easier. Be mindful not to use the shovel against the roots and corm as you dig. 

 

Step #2. Preparing the bulbs

Before you store the bulbs, gardeners must do some steps to prepare it. For example, make sure that you clean the corm and remove all the loose dirt and foliage in it. You also want to take out both the old corm and cormels using your hands. 

You’ll find the old corm at the bottom, while the tiny ones growing onto the main corm are the cormels. After the corm or “bulb” is clean and free from these parts and debris, you can consider dusting them with a mix of insecticide and fungicide for protection. 

 

Step #3. Storing and curing

Storing freesia bulbs is relatively straightforward as you’ll just lay them out on a newspaper, making sure that they are not in contact with each other. For the curing location itself, you can use the attic or garage as long as its a cool, dark, and dry, but the greenhouse makes the control of other conditions more comfortable. You can let the corms dry indoors for three weeks to cure and then brush off any remaining dirt. 

At this point, you might also need to remove damaged or diseased bulbs with soft spots. After curing, you can place the bulbs in a paper bag filled with dry peat moss until you use them. The emphasis is necessary on labeling the bags so that you can plant them at an ideal time. 

Additionally, this will help you identify the colors and varieties for planting. The North Carolina State Univesity also recommends maintaining the storage conditions at 77 to 86°F for bulbs. Overwintering and curing freesia bulbs can cause rot on some of them, so it’s best not to use those with soft spots when you replant in spring. 

 

 

How To Plant Freesia Bulbs

Prepare the corms by soaking them in water for half an hour. Be sure to check if the danger of frost has passed before planting, but you can also grow freesia in the greenhouse if you’re unsure of the conditions outdoors. You can always replant outdoors once the climate has settled. 

The ideal location for freesia bulbs should receive full sun and has fertile and well-draining soil. Prepare the site by loosening the ground and dig a hole, thrice the width of the corm. You can also incorporate fertilizer in this hole before you plant the bulbs. 

Remember that the bulbs should have their tips upwards when planting and allocate an inch of space among them. Like other plant bulbs, it’s crucial to maintain the soil moisture upon planting and during the growing season. You can only stop watering when the plants undergo dormancy.  

How to fertilize freesia bulbs? A balanced fertilizer every two weeks throughout the growing season or when the corms sprout until before dormancy should be enough. You can also pinch the dead flower heads to help with foliage growth until your plant shows signs of undergoing dormancy. 

 

Conclusion

The winter is generally a crucial time for plants, and gardeners need to do additional measures until spring comes for planting. Therefore, knowing how to store freesia bulbs or corms is a must-have skill if you want a productive freesia garden. To start, carefully gather the bulbs by digging around the perimeter of the plants. 

Remove the old corm and cormels on your “bulb”, as well as the loose soil before curing them indoors. In a dark and dry room, lay the corms in a newspaper for three weeks. You can then place them in a paper bag with dry peat moss and store at 77 to 86°F. 

The corms should be ready for replanting in spring, but make sure to discard those with soft spots as they are probably diseased and damaged from overwintering. 

 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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