Shedding Light on Bulbs

A bulb is a structure that grows underground; it stores food during its dormancy and then supplies energy for an emerging plant. You know what bulbs are if you buy onions or garlic at the grocery. Good ones are dense and have some heft to them, plus a thin papery skin for protection; as bulbs age, their robustness diminishes and they dry out. They sometimes begin to sprout the beginnings of green leaves out of their tops. Gardeners also consider foods like potatoes, sweet potatoes, ginger, and water chestnuts to be bulbs.

Garden bulbs are actually much the same as the ones at the grocery. Good ones have some plumpness and density because they're full of healthy, moisture-filled plant tissue. They really are a package of life! With the right conditions, and in time, they're sure to generate leaves — and the big payoff, gorgeous flowers.

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