This bulb's long-lasting flowers scent the garden. Here's how and when to plant them

Julie Chai,  – July 21, 2006

Known for their intense, luscious fragrance, tuberose is a welcome addition to the summer garden. Native to Mexico, tuberoses grow from rhizomes, and have long-lasting blooms in summer or early fall that make perfect cut flowers.

The look: Tuberoses have single- or double-flowered white blooms on stems that reach 3½ feet tall. Grassy leaves reach about half that height.

Planting: Tuberoses require four or more months of warm weather before flowering, and many nurseries sell blooming plants in summer. If you want to plant from rhizomes and live in a warm-weather area, you can plant outdoors in the ground. Space rhizomes 2 inches deep and 4 to 6 inches apart. In cooler areas, start them indoors in containers and set out when the ground warms in spring.

Care: Plant in full sun or light shade, and give regular water. Stop watering when foliage starts to turn yellow in fall. Leave in the ground where winter temperatures stay above 20 degrees, or dig and store in a cool, dry place.

Companions: Grow in clumps or alongside canna, ferns, Crocosmia, agapanthus, and Plectranthus.