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A garden enthusiast who loves to travel and capture the beauty of places and freeze the memories of her travels in photographs, as well as document her experiences in verse...thankful for the simple pleasures in life.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Fertilizer Friday, Blooming Friday and Seed Week: Glamorous Gladiolus

This is a very special post for me. This Fertilizer Friday,I get to flaunt a particularly precious flower to me - the gladiolus. I had grown glads before. I used to get the corms from the Cameron Highlands. However, for a very long time, there weren't any available up in the highlands, and I had lost my source of corms. I pined for glads in my garden for years. Then just four months ago, I managed to get three packets in New Zealand. They were all out of glads and these three packets were obtained from different towns. I found Her Majesty, Dark Eyes and Tout-a-Toi!!!


In November, I planted all three packets. Her Majesty was of course given her own kingdom, Dark Eyes given her own private sanctuary, secluded from prying eyes, and Tout-a Toi ( translated as All-a-thee...could it mean 'all of you', I wonder?) were placed all together in a comfy home of their own.

In just days, the spears appeared, inciting so much giddy enthusiasm on my part that I watched over them like a mother hen watches over her chicks. I watered them ever so faithfully twice a day. Our weather was not so kind to them at that time, so I was careful to tend to their need for refreshments.


I was rewarded, and these shoots grew fast and in 70 days, they formed buds.
Another kodak moment! In fact, many kodak moments to celebrate this occasion.

When the first petal peeped from out of the bud, flashbulbs went off by the second. I almost wanted to give out cigars and put in an ad in the local dailies. Dark Eyes was the first-born. She was so glamorous, looking mysterious and exotic as she bloomed. 


Next to arrive was Her Majesty. Straight-laced and proper, a true Victorian. She grew to be such a beloved queen in my garden haven. She is all sweetness and light,never haughty nor naughty! Graceful and charming to all who come to her court.


But where's Tout-a-Toi? We await her arrival with great anticipation.

Gladioli blooms signify infatuation.If you receive a bunch of glads from an admirer, he or she is telling you that you have pierced the heart of the sender.The flower is also a symbol of faithfulness and honour.What else could you ask for - a smitten admirer who will be steadfast and loyal to you! 


For kebunmalaykadazangirls' Seed Week, here are some tips on how to raise gladiolus plants.

They are really easy to grow. Plant the corms shallow,about 6-8cm under the surface, the tip almost showing on the ground.They need to be about 12-15cm apart. The soil should be well-drained. Mix in some plant food with the soil to ensure bigger blooms. The plants will flower in about 70-80 days from planting. Gladioli plants prefer a sunny position.  

The plants will require staking, especially if planted in an open location. When the blooms have faded, they can be removed, but the leaves should not be removed. New corms will grow on top of the spent corm, and smaller corms called cormels will develop at the base of the new corms. Cormels can bloom 2 or 3 years after replanting.

And how does this post relate to  Blooming Friday's theme of 'scent' when the gladioli flowers do not have a fragrance, you ask? Well, for those of you who have been growing scent-less glads, here is the scoop. 

Headlines read "Deliciously fragrant gladiolus discovered!"
There is one species, native to South Africa that releases a fragrance at night. The scent is said to be a mix of honey-suckle and almond! As a cut-flower, it continues to produce that special blend of perfume. It has been described as an elegant species, with large, nicely-shaped blooms. 
It is ...the Gladiolus tristis.

Sadly, I don't have that species in my garden, but would be ever so grateful to anyone who has, to send me some corms. Who wouldn't want a tryst with Galdiolus tristis in the still of the night, drowning in her fragrance of almond-honeysuckle delight?! It would be a rendezvous to remember.

For more Fertilizer Friday, Blooming Friday and Seed Week, please click on the links at the bottom of the page.


  1. Rosie they are so gorgeous and your photos are excellent!

  2. I have to remember this plant name. I might ask my mother to grow it. They are very lovely flower! About the nasturtium seeds, email me your address (

  3. Wow..lovely photos!
    Have a nice weekend!

  4. Wow, I am very jealous! I can't wait to plant Glad corms again. I love the photo of Dark Eyes with the moisture on the petals!

  5. @ p3chandan - Thank you. These flowers are just in time for Chinese New Year. Hope the sun comes out again in the next few days so that my flowers can smile.

    @ Malay-Kadazan girl - Your mum will love the flowers.

    @ IreneL - Thanks, Irene.

    @ PlantPostings - Hope rabbits don't like glads!

  6. I used to plant Glads every year when we lived at the other house. I have not planted them for a while now, and I didn't realize how much I'd missed them until today! thanks for the reminder...I think I will be picking up some when I am out and about next! thanks for linking in today...I have enjoyed it very much! I hope you will join me again next week!

  7. Hi! I've been searching for Glads long time. Do you sell them? I'm thinking to plant them in my parents house to brighten up their mood a little. Please contact me; Thank you!

  8. Hi. just wandered to your blog via Google search. Looks like you are very good at growing gladiolus. Can you please help me with identifying my gladiolus-looking plant? Thank you! The photo is the last one on
    Thanks in advance!

  9. hi, you have a nice looking gladiolus in blooms. Did you dig your corm after the leaf turn brown? how long did you "rest' the corms before you plant it again.


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