Gladiolus is a classic perennial flower that grows tall flower spikes and makes for a great cutting flower. Available in a slew of different colors, gladioli can grow between 2-6 feet tall. The taller versions are usually planted in the back of the garden and staked to compliment flowers in the front. In USDA zones 7 and colder though, gladioli will need to be lifted and replanted again in the spring. Keep reading to find out how to plant gladiolus in your garden and get a beautiful garden full of flowers!
This winter hardy perennial can be planted in the spring once all danger of frost has passed and the soil has warmed up. Grow gladiolus in well drained soil and full sun for best results. Planting gladiolus is easy – read the gardening guide below to find out how to plant glads in your garden!
How to Plant Gladiolus in Your Garden
- Plant gladiolus corms in the spring once all danger of frost has passed.
- Choose a spot with full sun.
- Loosen the soil to 12-15 inches deep using a garden tiller. Mix in a 2-4 inch layer of compost.
- If you are growing gladiolus for cut flowers, plant them in rows as they'll be easier to tend to.
- If you're planting gladiolus with other flowers, plant the corms in groups of 7 or more for a more striking effect.
- Set the corm in the hole about 4 inches deep with the pointed end facing up. Cover with soil and press firmly.
- Set each corm 3-6 inches apart and water them thoroughly.
- If you're planting the tall variety, make sure to set a stake next to the corm at planting time.
- It will take about 60 days for the gladioli to bloom.
- Cover the soil with 2-4 inches of mulch to keep gladioli moist, warm, and to prevent weeds from popping up.
- Keep soil moist at all times, and water regularly, especially if you get less than 1 inch of rain per week.
- Remove faded and dead flowers to ensure continuous growth.
- Once all the flowers on the stalk are gone, cut down the stalk.
- If you live in USDA zones 7 and 8, lay down a layer of mulch to protect the plants in the wintertime.
- For USDA zones 7 or colder, dig out the corms before the first fall frost.
Gladiolus Pests & Diseases:
Keep an eye out on your gladiolus plants for the following pests and diseases. The best way to prevent pests and diseases is to consistency check your flowers and if needed, apply a homemade insecticide.
- Gladiolus corm rot (Fusarium wilt)
- Gray mold
- Aster yellows
- Spider mites
So now that you know how to plant gladiolus, it's time to roll up your sleeves and get to planting!