The Q&A Archives: Storing And Planting Ranunculus

Question: Ranunculus are a tuber type plant and I am wondering what the best way is to store them during the winter months. When do I take them out of the ground? Or do I even need to? Mine are done blooming for the season and I want to dig them up to make room for my annuals until next spring. Thank you.

Answer: There are nearly 250 species in the Ranunculus group and the most commonly grown is R. asiaticus, the Turban Ranunculus. These perennials grow happily in full sunshine in average garden soil with regular watering in the spring and summer. Plant the tubers in the spring and water thoroughly, but don't water again until sprouts show. If overwatered, roots will not form and the tubers will die. Plant the tubers 6-8 inches apart and about 2 inches deep. Ranunculus leaves are a bright, fresh green and the flowers are 3-5 inches wide, in many shades of yellow, orange, red, pink, cream and white. Large tubers may produce many 1 1/2 foot tall stalks with 1-4 blooms on each stalk. They make supurb cut flowers.

In cooler climates such as yours, they are planted in the spring, and lifted in the fall. The tubers should be dug after the foliage dies down, and stored for replanting the following spring. Store in a cool, airy place over the winter months.

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