20 bulbs 260038-20 £4.95

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40 bulbs 260038-40 £9.50

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These magenta spires stud the olive groves in the Mediterranean. Known as 'Whistling Jack' in Cornwall and the Scilly Isles where it is also naturalised. Excellent in borders or grass.

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Genus Gladiolus communis subsp. byzantinus
Group/Species communis subsp. Byzantinus
Type Perennial
Common Name Byzantine gladiolus
Border Position Border (Middle)
Bulb Size 6/+

For more info on bulb sizes, click here.

Soil Type Broad Tolerance
Scent Unscented
Site Full Sun
Moisture Well-drained
Height 60cm (24in)
Spacing Plant 15cm (6in) deep, 15cm (6in) apart (slightly closer in pots)
Sowing, Seeds, Planting Plant fifteen corms every couple of weeks to give a succession of flowers through the summer and autumn. If you have heavy soil start them off in containers in early spring, put them somewhere bright and cold, but frost-free, and water. Wait for them to shoot and plant them out in the garden from May onwards, by which time you’ll have well established plants. Plant the corms 10cm (4in) apart and 10-15cm (4-6in) deep in clumps or lines. Secured deep in the ground, you are less likely to need a stake. For containers plant five corms in a 15cm (6in) pot at 20cm (8in) deep, you can pack them in more closely than in the ground.
Care Tips Water regularly during growing season and stake tall varieties. Lift after first frosts. If you're growing in containers, stop watering at the end of summer and bring the pots indoors for the winter. Leave them in their pots or take them out and dry. Put them out again next spring after danger of night frosts has passed. Find out more advice about how to plant and grow gladioli corms here.
Flowering May - June
Vase Life Remove the bottom leaves. Some people remove the top of the spike to encourage more flower but I think this is a shame as the twists and turns of the spike are part of the appeal.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
  • Sow Under Cover/Plant Indoors
  • Direct Sow/Plant Outdoors
  • Flowers/Harvest
How to plant and grow gladioli

Our guide to growing these magnificent cut flowers - easy to grow and perfect for cutting.


Bulb Delivery - When in stock, please allow 2-3 days for despatch.

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Gladiolus communis subsp. byzantinus reviews

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Reviewed 9th January 2021 by Louisa

Arrived in good time and condition. Have planted in pots but will plnt out in the Spring.

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Reviewed 31st July 2019 by Robert

Mine turned out to be the wrong colour, due to a mixup in labelling, but having them replaced later in the year so full marks for after sales

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Reviewed 31st July 2019 by Nicholas

These were stunning - I saw them on a recent trip to Italy growing wild on the roadside and the ones I grew from Sarah Raven were similar in very detail. I just hope they come again and again!!

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Reviewed 31st July 2019 by Richard

all the bulbs have been planted and this email reminded us about the Byzantus which have not shown an appearence at all

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Reviewed 31st July 2019 by Rosie

Extremely disappointing. Only an third of the bulbs came up, leaves were yellowed and only a few flowered.

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Reviewed 31st July 2019 by Jane

The bulbs all germnated well in pots and I plantes them outside last spring. I look forward to seeing them come up again Next year!

Gladiolus byzantinus

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Reviewed 1st June 2016 by Sue Hiscock

I planted these last year in my rather challenging wild patch, long grass,ground elder and moss, then forgot about them.
Every bulb is now flowering and they look so beautiful. I will be buying more