Beautiful Bulb Gardens: 10 Tips


The first spring bulb catalog just arrived!!!!!!
Sooooo excited…….

Ok, now that I have had a chance to compose myself, did you know October and early November are the best months to plant spring flowering bulbs in the Sacramento area?

Bulbs are a great way to get a big bang for your buck when landscaping in small spaces! Bulbs are great in colorful pots.  Leave them alone for the winter. Then, when spring starts coming around, put them close to your front door, or any place that needs a splash of color!!

Hurry and order your bulbs so you have time to get them planted for the best blooms in the spring.

Here are 10 steps to getting the perfect bulb blooms.

  1. Order your bulbs from a reputable source. The quality of the bulbs you plant will dictate the quality of the blooms you get next year. There are dozens of online bulb producers who ship top quality products.  Just make sure to check their customer reviews and return policy before buying.
  2. Choose an appropriate location with plenty of drainage and the right amount of sun for the bulbs you are planting. Remember to think about the way your yard will look in the early spring (before the trees have all their leaves).  A shady spot in the fall may have plenty of sun for an early spring bulb!
  3. Plant in the early fall for the best blooms. The bulbs will start sending out roots to gather nutrients until the weather gets cold. The stronger the root system the better the blooms!!!
  4. For a natural effect plant bulbs in clumps or drifts, 3-5 in one grouping is usually a good start. You can also toss a handful of bulbs in the air and plant them where they land. You will be surprised how well that works!!!
  5. This one sounds simple, but you would be amazed how often it is missed. Plant bulbs with the pointy side up. The pointed end is the stem  If you can’t tell for sure don’t worry too much.  The stem will find it’s own way, it will just take a little longer.
  6. Plant bulbs  about three times as deep as the diameter of the bulb. For small bulbs this may be as little as 3-4 inches, but for larger bulbs like daffodils this can be more than 6-8 inches.
  7. Feed your bulbs!!! Mix Bone Meal with the soil at the bottom of the planting hole. Do not just set the bulbs directly on the bone meal, make sure you mix it with the soil at the bottom of the hole.
  8. antelope-orange-yellow-tulip-bed-capital-landscape-webIf rodents are a problem in your area make a cage from the hardware cloth you can purchase at your local hardware store. Just put it in the hole and fill with your bulbs and soil. The roots will grow through the hardware cloth.  The stem can as well, but the bulb will remain safe. There are also bulbs that rodents do not like such as Daffodils.  Planting them alone or with other bulbs can help.  You can alsotry putting red pepper flakes at the bottom of the hole.
  9. Now just replace the soil on top of the bulbs and water them to settle the soil into any air pockets that may have remained.
  10. Wait for Spring!!! Make sure when the bulbs finish flowering in the spring that you cut back any blooms but leave the other foliage. Resist the temptation to cut everything off at ground level. The bulb needs a chance to rebuild its nutrient stores for the next spring. If you cut off all of the leaves you will have little or no blooms the next year!!!
One of my favorite things about bulbs is they quite literally multiply!!! In two or three years you will be able to dig up some of your bulbs and share them with friends. They can of course be left in the ground to continue blooming, but your friends will be delighted when you share those beautiful blooms with them!!
Happy Planting!!!!

2 thoughts on “Beautiful Bulb Gardens: 10 Tips


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