How to grow Dichelostemma ida-maia in a cold climate

Eugene Zielinski
Thu, 13 Mar 2014 21:57:39 PDT
I was able to bloom Dichelostemma ida-maia once when I lived in central
Pennsylvania.  The bulbs were from a commercial source and were planted in
the fall.  The plants came up in spring and bloomed in June.  Central PA is
classified as zone 6 (minimum temperature 0 to -10 F), but I believe the
temperatures were not that cold that winter, more in the zone 7 (10 to 0 F)
The plants did not reappear the following year.  I'm sure it was because I
planted the bulbs in an area where they did not get a chance to dry out
over the summer.
My suggestion is to keep the bulbs in the refrigerator, plant them as soon
as the ground can be worked in the spring, and keep your fingers crossed. 
You may have to lift them after they've died down in early summer and
replant them in the fall.  Mulch them with 8 (or more) inches of leaves
when the ground begins to freeze and remove the mulch in early spring (as
tulips and daffodils begin to emerge).

Eugene Zielinski
Prescott Valley, AZ

> [Original Message]
> From: Gastil Gastil-Buhl <>
> To: <>
> Date: 3/13/2014 2:40:12 PM
> Subject: [pbs] How to grow Dichelostemma ida-maia in a cold climate
> > Michael Tongate wrote:
> >> The students at the local school had a bulb sale. My wife bought some
Dichelostemma (Firecracker). I have read that this is a west coast native.
I live in central New York. How well will it do in my climate? Should I
even try? Do I have to do any thing special? It is an interesting plant. I
have never seen it before. I would appreciate any information that you
might have about it. Thank you for your help. 
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