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Devon, United Kingdom Gb

Is there a way of making sure that freesia bulbs grow?
I have been both succeessful in the past and have also failed miserably!




I think the best way to ensure success with freesia is to plant fresh new bulbs every year. Those will most likely give you a good show. Anything else that grows consider a bonus.

22 Jan, 2018


Thanks Bathgate, I have replanted old ones in the past and ..........nothing!!!

22 Jan, 2018


Me too. I got one nice season out of them, then nothing.

22 Jan, 2018


Freesias are native to Mediterranean climate areas of western South Africa. They need excellent drainage, ample sun, and protection from cold, soggy soil or frozen soil in winter, in both the UK and New York. They grow like weeds where I am, but are tougher to carry over from year to year in colder climates. To store them, don't do cool, do warm and dry, around 26º C (80º F) and 20% humidity are ideal.

23 Jan, 2018


Thanks. That clears up the
mystery. I thought a squirrel ran off with my flower bulbs or something!

23 Jan, 2018


many of the florist ones sold in the uk are grown in the channel islands on very sandy soil in poly tunnels. I was 'blown away' when we went to Guernsey and visited a freesia grower. they did sell them for you to grow your self but did say they were unlikely to re-flower as we are too cold and wet.

when I've grown them I have used a very sandy mix and started them off in pots before popping in the garden.

23 Jan, 2018


Many thanks.

I now realise that the wet, soggy, clay soil of Devon is NOT what freesias thrive on!! I have planted them in pots so hopefully they will stand a chance at least.

23 Jan, 2018


I went out and checked, and the first of my regular freesia opened today. We have been having a warmer than usual winter, so they have growing, along with the babiana. I have some in a pot that gets neglected, but they come back every year.
An interesting point was made on the pages of the Pacific Bulb Society: That bulbs of freesia hybrids get heat treated before being sold so they will grow & flower in the summer. However, they revert to be a winter-grower in their second year which may explain why people have trouble getting a repeat.

24 Jan, 2018


Interesting Wylie. A little while ago I was saying that mine (under glass) flowered in late winter like the wild ones on the Med, but somebody told me that there are two distinct varieties that flower at different times.

Perhaps the summer flowering ones could be planted in light soil in a pot sunk in the border and lifted into suitable conditions to overwinter. Worth a try?

26 Jan, 2018


There are 14 species of Freesia with F. grandiflora and F. laxa being summer rainfall types. These 2 are open and flat in form. The bulbs that are generally sold are hybrids, which are the ones in the photo Wildrose posted. None of the parents of the hybrids are the summer growers. I found a mention that the process of heat treating the bulbs means exposing them to temperatures of 25-30°C for 6-12 weeks. Also:
Most of the info is in the comment section.

26 Jan, 2018

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