The best summer bulbs for biodiversity

Summer bulbs create a colorful spectacle in your garden or on your balcony. They will flower tirelessly and are a source of nectar and pollen for butterflies and bees. This is how they increase biodiversity.

Insect magnets

There are several star performers among the summer bulbs that are real insect magnets. Once the threat of night frost has passed, pick a nice spring day to plant them. You can do this until the end of May.

  • African Lily (Agapanthus), flowering period: July-August, in various shades of blue and white, annual. Does well in the border, but feels most comfortable in a pot. A few degrees of frost is no big deal, but it is best to put the lily inside in a cool, bright place in winter.
  • Crocosmia (previously known as: Montbretia), flowering period: August-September in yellow, orange or red, perennial. With their bright colors, these flowers will set your border on fire. Keep the bulbs covered during their first winter.
  • Dahlia, flowering period: July-October in almost any color, annual. The single and semi-double flowers of this superstar are very popular with insects. Flowers for a long time in fall, especially if you deadhead regularly!
  • Green-flowered Galtonia, flowering period: July-August, in white, annual. Bees adore the many small, wonderfully fragrant, bell-shaped flowers of this unusual summer bulb.
  • Variegated pineapple lily (Eucomis), flowering period: July-August in yellow, green or white, hardy to -5°C (will need to be covered), perennial. With a crest of petals at the top of the flower stem, this flower has an unusual appearance.
  • Liatris (Liatris spicata), flowering period July-August in purple or white, perennial. The funny thing about this plant is that its spikes flower from the top down.
  • Tiger Flower (Tigridia), Flowering period: July-October in white, creamy yellow, pink and red, annual. A lesser-known summer bulb with beautiful dotted or streaked markings in the center of the flowers.

Practical tips

  • The packaging will tell you where and how deep to plant the bulbs (or tuber, but for the sake of convenience we will call all of them summer bulbs).
  • Most summer bulbs are real sun lovers. Their demands on the soil are modest; it just needs to be sufficiently permeable to water.
  • Summer bulbs are fun to combine; don’t hesitate to vary with different varieties.
  • Perennial summer bulbs can be left in the ground; they will simply flower again next year.
  • Annual summer bulbs need to be removed from the soil after flowering. Store them in a cool, frost-free place during winter. You can plant some spring-flowering bulbs in their place.

Blue flower Agapanthus, African lily Pink Dahlia with butterfly White summer flowering bulbs (Summer hyacinth) Close up Eucomis summer flowerbulb (Biodiversity)