As the old saying goes:"Don't judge a book
by its cover!" When it comes to gardening, good things come to those who wait. In short, all that's needed is a little faith in nature and to remember that our plants have been grown, cared for and stored properly to ensure your success.
It's important to be patient when starting with dormant plants, but your patience will be rewarded. Like many legendary heroes in literature, your amazing plants will also emerge from unpresuming beginnings.
Understand what to expect when your package arrives. Remember that discoloured or contorted dormant plants, such as bulbs, are not dead or in poor health. Plants are like people: They come in many shapes and sizes, but those physical constraints do not limit their potential.
Overlook the way they look
If you're used to buying live potted plants, receiving your first dormant plant can be a somewhat unsettling experience. Instead of getting a starter plant with leaves and possibly even some blooms, you will instead unpack what appears to be a clump of dried plant material. But don't panic. Many healthy dormant plants will look this way, such as these iris rhizomes.
Each of these is a healthy rhizome
Dormant plants, such as these iris rhizomes, will arrive in different stages of dormancy depending on the time of year they are shipped to you. Don't be concerned, for example, about dry foliage, such as that seen here. All these irises will perform equally well.