What are True Flower Bulbs?

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What are True Flower Bulbs? - Provided by eHow
How to understand what a true bulb is; get professional tips and advice from an expert on picking, buying, and planting flower bulbs in this free gardening video. View Video Transcript

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Yolanda Vanveen

Video Transcript

YOLANDA VANVEEN: Hi. This is Yolanda Vanveen on behalf of Expert Village. Today, we're going to talk about what is considered a true bulb. Here, I have a few flower bulbs that are considered true bulbs. And the first--when I think of a true bulb I think of something very simple like a Tulip bulb. Now, it looks perfectly like a little Hershey's Kiss candy. It's easy to plant, you can tell which way is up, the tip goes up, and I like to put them in nice groups of three or more and true bulbs have all of their energy stored inside and when they multiply, they make little babies or bulblets. And so, as they multiply, they just keep clumping and clumping and clumping. We've got Lilies. Garlic is really a Lily, so each clove will actually grow into its own bulb. So, over the years, you'll notice you'll have--there's quite a few Lily bulbs around it and I always say keep the mamas together with the babies when the babies are smaller than the mamas, but since the bulbs are bigger then you can separate them. I've got little Iris reticulatas which are these tiny little bulbs and they are also considered a true bulb, although the Bearded Irises are not true bulbs because they're more of root, so this is a very different plant; although they're in the same family, they're two types of bulbs totally separate from each other. This is the Amaryllis belladonna, also known as the Naked Lady and the same thing, it looks much like a Tulip or other type of bulb, and it grows to about 2 or 3 feet tall and it's just a beautiful plant. Here's another type of Dutch Iris, and there's 1500 types of Iris and every bulb looks different. So, I always tell myself I don't know how they could be related to each other but they all have kind of three-pointed flowers so they're considered Irises and they are bulbs 'cause they go dormant for a part of the year. Daffodils, here's an example. We've got a mama Daffodil with a baby Daffodil so these are considered true bulbs and I wouldn't actually separate the baby until it's bigger and I would just plant it together because you'll find in the future that when you leave them in groups, family groups, they'll do a lot more than when they're off all by themselves in a corner. This plant is called the Scilla peruviana and it's actually from Southern Spain. It has a big blue flower on it and it's considered a true bulb just because it's a clump. So, you can see how it multiplies. And the same thing, you could separate it out like it is or leave it together. When I plant my bulbs, I like to keep them in groups. I've got Crocus and Crocosmia which are corms, which are considered true bulbs as well, and they grow the same way in groups and they multiply; the seeds actually drop and develop into bulbs as well on pretty much all true bulbs. So, you can never run out of them. It's just once you plant just a few, you'll have lots of them. So, in the next segment, we're going to talk about what is a tuber, a root, or a rhizome.