Spring forward…plant fall bulbs now for outstanding spring blooms!
Now is the time to plan for a beautiful show of colour with spring-flowering bulbs.
Every bulb has its own period of bloom. With the information on the labels and bit of planning, you will be able to enjoy your displays of colour from the beginning of spring right through until May or June. Snowdrops and crocuses pop their little heads out during the very beginning of spring. Not far behind, comes the narcissi and the first early tulips. In April and May, it is time for grape hyacinths, later-flowering tulips and the impressive fritillaria. Ornamental onions (allium) flower from mid-May right into June.
How to Plant in your Garden:
– amend the existing soil with compost and garden loam to provide good drainage
– plant in a sunny location (they need 6 hours), remembering that deciduous trees will not have leaves on them in early spring
– plant alone or in groupings (eg. 5 or 7)
– dig hole 3x the size of the bulb (eg 2” bulb=6” planting depth)
– place the bulbs as desired and continue to back fill the hole with soil
– use bone meal now in the planting hole to ensure that the bulbs start to root in the fall
– add chicken manure with your bulbs to help keep squirrels away
– generally, plant a bulb twice as deep as it is tall
– for example, large bulbs (tulips and hyacinths) should be planted 6-8” deep with small bulbs (snowdrops and crocuses) planted about 5” deep
– space large bulbs about 5” apart and small bulbs 2-3” apart (no touching in the ground)
– after planting, water the area well, this stimulates bulbs to start producing roots
–add mulch to keep soil temperatures consistent and allow the bulbs to produce roots longer into the fall
– the earlier the roots are formed, the faster the bulb will be able to tolerate cold and frost.