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When you think of Flower Garden Walk, hundreds of thousands of vibrantly colored outdoor bulbs typically come to mind. However, if you take a stroll down the 600-foot-long path now, you’ll see some empty beds. That's because even though we’re six months away from our spring tulip display, we start the bulb planting process now.
With help from a variety of individuals, including Longwood gardeners, volunteers, students, and interns as well as corporate volunteers from W.L. Gore, we will plant approximately 150,000 bulbs along Flower Garden Walk and Flower Garden Drive.
Following a carefully designed plan, volunteers will use measuring sticks to space bulbs five or six inches apart to ensure all the bulbs are uniform. Meanwhile, in other areas bulbs will be planted in clusters of three or five about a foot apart. This allows our gardeners to plant spring annuals in the open spaces closer to spring.
“Since spring flowering bulbs need a cold period in order to bloom, we plant them between mid-October and mid-November after nighttime temperatures are between 40 and 50 degrees and about six weeks before the ground freezes,” explains gardener April Bevans.
To ensure that the bulbs bloom abundantly in the spring, we lay plastic netting over the beds soon after they are planted to protect them from weather conditions and wild animals. In early spring, the netting is removed and Longwood students and gardeners set up and remove a deer fence around the entire display each evening and morning.
This year, these measures will protect some new additions to our spring blooms, including an unusual Camassia leichtinii ‘Sacajawea,’ and new Tulip varieties such as ‘Seadov,’ Caravelle,’ ‘Lightening Sun,’ and ‘El Nino.’ We will also unveil new colors among the Square Fountain blooms this spring—peach and purple.
Remember to stop by the Flower Garden Walk this spring to see the results of these preparations during Spring Blooms from March 31-May 20.
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Enjoy family-fun activities, an outdoor concert, and behind-the-scenes experiences.
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Get ready for an evening of oohs and ahhs, as Longwood presents spectacular Fireworks & Fountains shows guaranteed to make your summer memorable.
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Registration is now open for our 2013 Continuing Education courses!
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