This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V21", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
" To give a succession of flowers through the Summer a portion of the plants may be started about the middle of February, and a further supply in March; let the pots be proportionate to the size of the tubers - 7 inches in diameter will be large enough for the second season. In potting just leave the crowns of the tubers on a level with the surface of the soil, and immediately they are potted place them in a temperature of 60° at night, and 5° or 10° warmer by day; if not, put in heat as soon as potted, the roots will rot; the soil ought to be in a slightly moist state when used, and little water should be given until growth has commenced. Treat them throughout the season as recommened for the preceding Summer as to heat, shade, air, light, and moisture. As already pointed out, their satisfactory flowering will depend upon their receiving abundance of light; a shelf over a path within a few inches of the roof is the best place for them, for in such a situation not only do they get the requisite amount of light, but they also receive more air, both being so essential to short sturdy growth.
This Summer they will bloom well, and increase considerably in the size of their roots, yet it is in the third and fourth years after sowing that they will make the finest display.
When the bulbs get large they may be divided, retaining to each portion some of the buds with which the crown is furnished; but the most general method of propagation, and by far the most expeditious, is by leaf-cuttings. If the leaves be taken oft* in the Summer when fully matured with a portion of the leaf-stalks, and this portion inserted in 5-inch pots, drained and filled with half peat, or loam and sand, with 1/2-inch of sand on the top, and kept in a brisk heat, slightly shaded, and the soil moist, they will form healthy bulbs before Autumn; or, if the variety that is to be increased be scarce, several may be produced from single leaves by cutting through the midrib on the under side in four or five places, and laying the leaves flat down on the soil in pots or pans, prepared as above, but sufficiently wide to admit of their being so placed. Over each place, where the midrib has been severed, secure the cut parts on the soil with a pebble about the size of a cockle, at which points bulbs will be formed, which, when the top has decayed in the Autumn will require to be wintered, and afterwards grown on in every way as recommended for the plants raised from seed".