Answer: The damage you describe sounds like Gladiolus Thrips (western flower thrips). These pesky little insects damage flowers to the point where they shrivel up before opening. Their feeding also leaves white spots or streaks on flowers and leaves. To fight gladiolus thrips, just before planting gladiolus corms, soak them in a solution of 1;1/4 tablespoons Lysol in a gallon of water. Storing corms at 40F to 45F also effectively eliminates remaining thrips. Generally, trouble with gladiolus thrips is much less serious when bulbs are planted early rather than late. Don't leave corms in the ground from one year to the next, particularly in an area where neighbors grow gladiolus. Dig them early in the fall, before they're mature, and cut off the tops, which harbor most of the pests. Then treat with Lysol and store them for replanting.
Best wishes with your glads!
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