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Tips to get rid of those leaves

November 01, 2008|By BOB KESSLER
(Page 2 of 2)

A basement or crawl space works well. Check on them periodically to ensure they are not drying out. If needed, add a little moisture to keep the tubers plump. In the spring, divide the clumps, making sure to include an eye or bud that is attached to each tuber close to where they were joined in the clump.

· Gladiolus - Corms can be dug about six weeks after they finish flowering or when the tops start to turn slightly yellow. After digging, wash off the soil and cut the tops to within an inch of the corm.

Leave the corms outdoors in the sun for a few days and then move them to a light, airy place. Spread them out and allow them to cure for two to three weeks.

"After they are dry, remove the old corm located under the new corm by twisting it off," he said. "Do not remove the papery husk from the corm. Place the corms in an open flat or in onion bags or nylon stockings. Store at 40 to 50 degrees in a well-ventilated area. The small cormels (baby gladiolus corms) can also be saved for future planting. Keep in mind; however, it may take two to three seasons before they will produce blooming-size corms."

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· Tuberose begonias - These should be dug before any frost hits them. Dig them with the stems attached and allow them to air dry. Remove the dry stem.

Tubers can then be stored in flats or containers with dry sand, peat moss, or vermiculite. While bulbs are in storage, check on them periodically during the winter. Slightly dampen the peat moss if bulbs show signs of shriveling or drying out. Also, if any of the bulbs show signs of decay or other soft rots, remove them immediately.

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