Freesias produce colourful flowers along a long stem. These tender perennials are fragrant, grown as much for their citrus-like aroma as for their delicate blossoms. Freesias grow from a bulb structure called a corm. The bulb stores all the nutrients the freesia requires to grow and bloom each year. Freesias are well-suited to both pots and garden beds, blooming throughout the summer. Plant freesia bulbs once all frost danger is past in the spring, and enjoy the blooms in your bulb garden.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Potting soil
- Freesia bulbs
Apply a 7.5 cm (3 inch)layer of compost over a full-sun, well-drained garden bed prior to planting. Work the compost into the top 15 cm (6 inches) of soil to further improve drainage and soil nutrition. Alternatively, fill a 15 cm (6 inches) diameter pot with a quality potting mixture.
Sow the freesia bulbs to a five-inch depth, planting them so the pointed end faces upward. Space the bulbs four inches apart in clusters of five or more bulbs. In pots, space the bulbs 2.5 to 5 cm (1 to 2 inches) apart.
Water the garden bed after planting until the top 15 cm (6 inches) of soil is evenly moist. Water pots until the excess moisture just begins to drain from the bottom of the pot and into the drip tray. Empty the excess water from the drip tray, if applicable.
Fertilise the freesia with soluble bulb fertiliser once the plant finishes blooming. Leave the foliage in place until it dies back naturally in late summer or early autumn.
Tips and warnings
- In areas with mild winters that do not experience winter freezing, freesia bulbs can be planted in autumn for spring blooms. Cover the bed with a 5 cm (2 inch) layer of mulch just in case there are some cold nights during the winter, as mulch helps protect the bulbs.
- Store freesia bulbs indoors in a paper bag filled with dry peat moss. Place them in warm, 25 to 30 degrees Celsius (77 to 86 degree Fahrenheit) room until you are ready to replant them in the spring.
- Freesias are not tolerant of any temperatures under -4 degrees Celsius (25 degrees Fahrenheit); they must be dug and stored each fall or grown in pots that are moved indoors before winter cold.