Tulips are not the only spring flowers that bloom from bulbs. There are many others that brighten the the landscape once winter snows disappear. Spring brings blooms in white, yellow, purple, blue, pink and sometimes orange, and the flowers' bright colors are a welcome sight after a long, gray winter. Most spring flowers do come from bulbs or corms. They need to be planted in the fall and go through a cold period to activate their growing process.
Crocus flowers grow in an elongated, star-like fashion and look like a trumpet when not fully open. The flowers grow in a variety of colors including purple, yellow, orange and white, and some have stripes. Crocus flowers grow from a corm that should be planted in the fall about three inches deep in clusters. The leaves of the plant are similar to grass, with a silver stripe running down the middle. Crocuses grow very close to the ground and like sun but will tolerate partial shade.
The hyacinth is probably one of the most fragrant spring flowers. The star-shaped flowers grow on a column. They may grow up to twelve inches high and come in several colors including pink, white, blue and creamy yellow. The leaves are very narrow and there are only four to six of them per plant. Hyacinths grow from a bulb and should be planted in full sun in the fall.
Daffodils have a sunny appearance. They have six lower petals in white or yellow. A trumpet-like set of petals that form a cup come from the center and can be white, pink, yellow, orange or a bright orange-red. There are even some daffodils that have a green cast to them. The leaves are shiny green and very narrow, and the flowers grow on stalks about twelve to fifteen inches in height. They enjoy full sun and are planted from bulbs during the fall. Plant the bulbs about six inches deep and six inches apart.
The allium, also called the flowering onion, is a member of the onion family but is ornamental. The bulbs should be planted in the autumn at a depth of eight inches deep about one foot apart. The leaves are long and narrow, about eighteen inches high and two inches wide, and are a beautiful blue-gray color. A stalk emerges from the leaves about three to four feet tall and at the top grows a globe-like flower. The flowers that appear on that globe are tiny and a beautiful lavender color.
Grape hyacinths look like little tiny clusters of grapes on a stalk. The flowers are oval and cluster together at the top of a long, slender stalk. There may be twelve to twenty flowers in the cluster. Grape hyacinths do not get very big, growing only to about six inches high. Some do get taller, but rarely get more than one foot high. The leaves are slender and dark green and the flowers are purple or white. These flowers also grow from a bulb that is small and should be planted in the fall three inches deep and four inches apart.
There are many different Iris types, the most common being Dutch Iris and Bearded Iris that grow in the late spring. The iris grows from a bulb planted in the fall at five inches deep and six inches apart. The plant grows up to two feet high and has dense, lance-like leaves that might top two feet themselves. The dainty flowers grow at the top of stalks and look silky and frilly. The bearded variety have a fuzzy beard that comes from the center of the flower. They come in many colors, including white, yellow, orange, blue and purple, as well as several that combine two colors. They should be planted in full sun, and they spread from year to year. If they do not flower, it is time to pull some up and give others some room.