What is Hyacinth?
Hyacinth (Hyacinthus orientalis) also known as Dutch Hyacinth are Spring flowering bulbous perennials that produce the most marvellous fragrance. They are part of the Liliaceae family and originated in Southern Europe. Hyacinths have erect narrow glossy green strap like foliage that roll slightly inward. A central flower spike, during Spring, will emerge which is a mass of tubular style flowers all along the stem. They come in a large variety of colours ranging from burgundy, pink, orange, salmon, yellow, purple, white or blue. When planting, Hyacinth need a full sun to part shade position in the garden with moderately fertile, well-drained soil. In the warmer climates and in areas that do not get Winter frosts, it is best to keep the bulbs in the fridge for one to two months prior to planting to stimulate the chilling period. They are frost hardy when in the ground, however can be susceptible to damage from frost if in pots outdoors. Hyacinths grow particularly well in pots. Choose a pot that is at least 15cm deep so you can get a good base of potting mix. Plant the bulbs 12cm below the surface of the soil. Water in well after planting and place the pot where it will receive at least 6 hours of sun.
Benefits of Growing Hyacinth
Hyacinths are easy to grow. They look stunning when planted en masse in garden beds, borders, containers or rock gardens. Plant them in a place where you can walk by and smell their wonderful fragrance. They are ideal for growing in pots to bring inside to enjoy their beauty. For those with limited space or to teach children how bulbs grow, Hyacinths can be grown indoors in specially designed hourglass shaped glass vases. Growing Hyacinths in vases is a great way to introduce kids to the magic of bulbs as they can see all the different process and stages of development the bulb goes through to produce a flower. Take care however with the bulbs around young children and pets as they can be poisonous if consumed.
How to Grow Hyacinth
Cool, temperate, arid. They thrive in a cold to cool climate.
Height: 20-25cm, Width: 10-15cm
When To Plant Hyacinth
Plant in Autumn.
Soil must be well drained and enriched with organic matter. Before planting mix through well broken down animal manure, Blood and Bone or a complete fertiliser into the soil.
How To Plant Hyacinth
Plant in full sun to partial shade, 15cm apart with the bulb 12cm underneath the soil surface. Note: Hyacinth will not thrive in heavy shade
Hyacinth Plant Care
Water well after planting but not again until after leaves emerge unless particularly dry. Give regular deep watering until the bulb begins to go into dormancy.
Once the foliage of the hyacinth turns yellow they need to be dug up, dried and cleaned with a cloth and stored in a dry and airy place until the next season.
Hyacinths are generally not susceptible to pest and disease problems however keep an eye out for snails and slugs with the new foliage growth.
For best results in the next season remove spent flower stems and continue to water and feed the plant until all the foliage starts to turn yellow and die down.
Recommended Hyacinth Varieties
These Spring flowering bulbs display well both in and outdoors while their unmistakable fragrance is a must have for a garden that’s bursting with colour.