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Spring Blooming Bulbs

September 29, 2021


Spring into early season blooms

Spring-blooming bulbs, such as tulips, hyacinths, crocus, and daffodils, should be planted in September through October when evening temperatures average between 40° – 50° F.
Ground temperatures reaching 40° – 50° F. Summer-blooming beauties such as dahlia and gladiolus are best planted in the spring after all danger of frost has passed.

Healthy bulbs

Choose healthy bulbs without mold or bruising and select the right location. Most flowering bulbs prefer full sun, which  most planting sites receive in the spring as the trees don’t yet have their leaves.
So don’t overlook a spot in your garden just because it’s a bit shady in the fall. It is best to apply fertilizer and lime according to the results of a soil test. The soil pH for most  bulbs should be between 6 and 7.

Planting bulbs

Depending on the bulb, follow the recommendation on the label for planting depth. As a general rule, plant big bulbs about 8″ deep and small bulbs about 5″ deep. Set the bulb in the hole pointy side up or the roots down. It’s easy to spot the pointy end of a tulip, and tougher with a crocus. If you can’t figure out the top from the bottom, plant the bulb on its side, in most cases, even if you don’t get it right, the flower will still find its way topside.

Nurture your bulbs

Time to water

Now that the bulbs are planted, back fill with soil over the hole, lightly compress the soil but do not pack it. Water once to stimulate root growth and to fill any air pockets. There is no need to water continuously unless you live in an area with low precipitation in the winter months.

Watering Can

Planting container bulbs

You can leave your flower arrangement in its pot until the flowers are done blooming for the season. Once the blooms start to die, take the bulbs out of the pot, and plant them in your garden bed in the fall, spacing bulbs 4-6 inches apart.

Help your bulbs grow!

Be sure add Espoma Bulb-tone® and Espoma Bone Meal fertilizer to the hole at the time of planting. When backfilling with soil, cover them up with a couple inches of Bumper Crop® Soil Builder to keep the soil loose and protect against hungry rodents.