Crocosmia lucifer in bloom.
image by Semnoz:commons.wikimedia.org
Crocosmia are perennial flowering plants grown and propagated by underground corms. They grow bright green strappy foliage with multiple bright red, yellow and orange blooms atop tall slim stems. Hardy in USDA zones 6 through 9 crocosmia thrive in full sun to partial shade exposures and bloom throughout the summer. With their dramatic color and architectural bloom structure, crocosmia are particularly stunning when planted en masse.
Prepare a soil bed for your crocosmia corms that is well tilled to a depth of 6 inches to allow easy root penetration into the soil. Amend the soil with compost to make it nutrient rich and aid in drainage.
Bury your corms lengthwise in the soil, two inches deep with the eyes up. Plant multiple corms 8 to 10 inches apart to allow the corms plenty of space to naturalize and multiply over several seasons.
Water your corms when you plant them, and then water only periodically until green shoots begin to appear in early spring. At that point begin regular irrigation to keep the soil consistently moist but not overly wet. Mulch over the plantings with an organic material such as cocoa hulls or shredded bark to prevent moisture loss to evaporation and keep down weeds.
Feed your crocosmia with a good quality granular flowering bulb fertilizer in early to mid-spring after growth has appeared above the soil and once again in the summer. Follow the dosing directions on the package and apply over pre-moistened soil to prevent burn and speed nutrient uptake.