Ranunculus blooms in the spring and early summer. A member of the buttercup family, ranunculus produces flowers in a variety of bright colors. Each flower has layers of petals and looks similar to a delicate rose. Encouraging your plants to grow full and produce an abundance of blooms keeps the ranunculus and your garden looking its best. Once established properly, ranunculus provides a full bed of bright blooms in season.
Plant ranunculus in a well-drained, full-sun bed. Too little light causes the ranunculus to grow sparse and leggy and also inhibits proper foliage size. Soggy soils lead to rot and plant death.
Sow large ranunculus varieties at 10 to 12 inch intervals. Sow small tubers 4 to 6 inches apart. Planting too far away creates a sparse bed, while planting too closely together causes plants to become thin and leggy.
Deadhead the ranunculus as soon as the flowers begin to fade. Snip the flowers off with a pair of shears directly behind the flower head, preventing the ranunculus from setting seed. Deadheading encourages further bloom, making the ranunculus plant look fuller.
Fertilize the ranunculus in spring and fall with a bulb fertilizer, applying it at the rate recommended on the label. Proper soil nutrition encourages full foliage growth and may prolong flowering.
Divide the tubers every three to four years so the bed doesn't become overgrown, which may lead to thin growth and inhibit flowering. Dig up the tubers once the foliage dies back in summer, and cut apart the roots, leaving two to three buds on each tuber piece. Replant the tubers at the recommended spacing for the ranunculus size.
Things You Will Need
- In areas that have prolonged freezing temperatures in winter, dig the tubers up each year and store them in dry peat moss until the following spring.
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