Michael Mace via pbs
Thu, 08 Oct 2020 20:13:43 PDT
Elaine wrote:

> my saffron bulb has sprouted!


>So now I wonder, since it sprouted, do I give it more sun gradually
bringing it up to full sunlight for? 2-3 hours a day?

I don't think you need to be too gradual about it. Crocuses are pretty
tough, and if the leaves just started to emerge the transition to more sun
should not be too stressful. They should be OK if they get at least a half a
day of full sun, by the way. They like sun but you don't have to bake them
on your driveway.

>How much water should I give? I?m in 9b, California San Francisco Bay Area,
and it does get pretty dry. Drench it every ?3 days?

What sort of pot is it in, and what is the soil like? When I use pots, they
are usually 8-inch (20 cm) plastic, and I water once a week. Maybe a little
more often if the weather is really dry.

A clay pot will need more frequent water, and a smaller pot may need it as
well. The big thing is not to let the pot totally dry out, but not to let it
get stay waterlogged either. You're after a nice evenly moist situation,
with some air capable of entering the soil.

Regarding the danger of mice and other little critters eating the corms,
that is indeed a very significant danger. I embed half-inch chicken wire in
the top of the soil to prevent that. You could even lay it on the top of the
soil in your pot, being careful to position it so the leaves of your bulb
are not smashed. The worst mice/rat attacks seem to happen in summer, but
I've also had pots attacked in winter while the corms are in growth. It's
awful to go out to check the plants and find little holes dug in the soil
and no bulbs to be seen.

Screenhouses are also very effective at keeping out the rodents here. So far
they haven't been smart enough to chew through the screen.

>Mike Mace, are you in SF Bay Area too?

Yup, in glorious San Jose at the south-eastern edge of the city. The coyotes
were wailing a few minutes ago, and a couple of weeks ago a bobcat got two
of the neighbor's ducks. Yikes! I wish the bobcat would eat the rats


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