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Heirloom Gladiolus Bulbs

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NOVA LUX, 1965

Bright yet soft, the lemon yellow color of this full-sized glad is just right, carrying across the garden and lighting up bouquets. We’re fans of its classic, triangular shape, too, and the old-fashioned smoothness of its barely rippled petals. 4 feet, from a third-generation family farm in Michigan. Chart and care.

SGL-64
10/$8.50
25/$20
50/$38
100/$72
250/$170

OVATIE, 1969New

Although ruffled glads are the norm today, we love the simple, smooth, barely undulating petals of older glads like ‘Ovatie’ (Dutch for “ovation”) which seem more in tune with modern esthetics. Its warm peach color shades to yellow in the throat and rose on back, making it look as luscious as a real peach. 4 feet, slightly later blooming, from Michigan. Chart and care.

SGL-36
10/$9
25/$21.50
50/$40.50
100/$76.50
250/$180

PETER PEARS, 1958

Named for a honey-voiced English tenor and pronounced “Peers”, this warm, summery flower is a harmonious orange blending to a golden throat (get it?) with a splash of strawberry. Excellent for adding some color or a little height to any garden. 4’, from Holland. Chart and care.

SGL-05
10/$8.50
25/$20
50/$38
100/$72
250/$170

PLUM TART, 1976

Our favorite glad we trialed in 2018, this ruffled, angular beauty almost vibrates with the intensity of its deep, saturated color. It’s also “amazingly healthy and prolific,” in the words of a top professional grower – and in gardens where ‘Atom’ is winter hardy, you may find that ‘Plum Tart’ is, too. 4 feet, from a third-generation family farm in Michigan. Chart and care.

SGL-09
10/$8.50
25/$20
50/$38
100/$72
250/$170

PRISCILLA, 1977

We’ve never offered a bulb from the 1970s before, but when eight of our Maine-grown glads were lost to a brutally hot, dry summer, and two of our Dutch-grown heirlooms went commercially extinct, we knew it was time for ‘Priscilla’. White with ruffled, bright rose petal edges and a lemon-yellow throat, this is not only a gorgeous glad, it’s an unusually hardy and enduring glad – and an heirloom of the future! 4-5 feet, from Michigan. Chart and care.

SGL-67
5/$5
10/$9.50
25/$22.50
50/$42.50
100/$80

STARFACE, 1960Rarest

This just might be the most beautiful glad we’ve ever grown. Charmingly small-flowered, it has upper petals of dappled apricot and lower petals of pale yellow spiked with ruby. Victorian gardeners loved patterned glads like this, and we say it’s high time for a revival! 3 feet, from Maine. Chart and care.

SGL-35
3/$12
5/$19
10/$36
25/$85
Limit 25, please.

TRADER HORN, 1972

Red is the most iconic color for glads, rich, bold, and dramatic in the garden or bouquets. The elegantly smooth petals of this 1970s classic are a bright scarlet delicately brush-stroked with cream. It’s named for the Dutch trader whose autobiography is subtitled A Young Man’s Astounding Adventures in 19th-Century Equatorial Africa. 4-5 feet, from Holland. Chart and care.

SGL-25
5/$6
10/$11.50
25/$27.50
50/$51.50
100/$97.50
250/$230

WINE AND ROSES, 1976

With its bold splashes of burgundy and white, this shell-pink beauty may remind you of exotic Miltonia orchids. It’s a traditional glad, larger than ‘Elvira’ but not too big, delicately ruffled, and like all glads it lasts and lasts in bouquets. 4 feet, from Michigan. Chart and care.

SGL-32
10/$8.50
25/$20
50/$38
100/$72
250/$170

WHY GROW GLADS? They make luscious, long-lasting cut-flowers. They add dramatic spikes of color to the garden. And they multiply and store so easily (if you feel like it; it’s NOT a moral imperative!), you’ll soon have many more.

SMALL IS BEAUTIFUL — More and more gardeners today are rediscovering the charms of species and small-flowered glads. In 2006, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden asked Scott to extol his favorites in an article titled “Glads for Glad-Haters.”

GLADIOLUS HISTORY — The first hybrid glads appeared in 1837, and Victorian gardeners — including Monet and Gertrude Jekyll — loved them. Unfortunately, virtually no glads from the 1800s survive today, and even glads from the 1930s are very hard to find.

GLADIOLUS ARCHIVES — For customer tips and raves, the stories behind the bulbs, links and books, history, news, and more, see our Gladiolus Newsletter Archives.

TIPS FOR SUCCESS — Glads are easy to grow, doing best in full sun and well-drained soil. They’re most often grown as annuals, but they’re perennial in zones 8 and warmer — and often return in zones 7, 6, and even 5, according to many of our customers. See our complete planting and care info here and learn more about overwintering glads in the garden here.

THRIPS are one of the few pests that bother glads. They’re almost invisible but they can be devastating. Learn more.


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